The Big Mac Blog

Dak demotion for Romo assumes too much

Two consecutive ish games by starting QB Dak Prescott has some Cowboys fans calling for Tony Romo to start.
Two consecutive ish games by starting QB Dak Prescott has some Cowboys fans calling for Tony Romo to start.

Pipe down you Romo-sexuals, for it’s not going to happen - so all ye gather ‘round for this latest history lesson in Mac Attack’s Pompous Tales Of Never Being Wrong.

Twas January of 2007 when the Dallas Cowboys were preparing to play an NFC wild card game in Seattle against the Seahawks when NFL Hall of Famer John Madden was on a conference call; he noted that when you go with a young quarterback you’re going to have an inconsistent offense - that’s what the Cowboys had become by January of ’07 when Madden made this observation.

Tony Romo was in his first year as the team’s starting quarterback, and in the week of the team’s wild card playoff game against the Seattle Seahawks the ease at which he had previously moved his team had ceased.

Opponents were figuring him out, coach Bill Parcells was pulling the leash on Romo, and the Cowboys offense had become erratic. Tony looked like a first-time starting QB who may just not make it.

In October and November of that season, the Cowboys were 6-3 and Romo had thrown for 13 touchdowns, five interceptions, a little more than 1,600 yards and completed just under 70 percent of his passes.

In the final month of the season, the Cowboys were 2-3, Romo had six touchdown passes with eight interceptions and his completion percentage dropped to 60.

Here we are in 2016 and the same thing is going on with Dak Prescott; before December, the team was 11-1 and he had thrown for 18 touchdowns, two interceptions and had completed 67 percent of his passes.

His early success defied all conventional NFL thinking, and re-inforced what we already know – “scouts” guess on prospects like the rest of us.

In the first two games of December, Dak is 1-1 and he is completing 52.7 percent of his passes with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Now he looks like a rookie ... because he is.

Dak was spotty, at best, in a close win at Minnesota and not good in a loss against the New York Giants on Sunday night in New Jersey.

The Giants secondary did not give him much room for open receivers, said receivers didn’t help him too much but no matter, Dak was a dog in NYC.

Like the villagers storming Frankenstein’s castle, the Romosexuals are swarming the Stars in Frisco saying the Cowboys must put Tony in right now, to which neither head coach Jason Garrett nor assistant head coach Jerry Jones agree.

While playing a rookie quarterback is normally a sure ticket for an erratic offense, the problem with re-inserting Romo is that it assumes he will be the same player he was in 2014.

The premise of playing Romo again assumes that 2015 occurred in a vacuum; that he is not 36; that he has not suffered major injuries in the last few seasons.

Romo has not played an NFL regular season game since Nov. 26, 2015. That’s when he suffered a season-ending broken clavicle against Carolina.

In Romo’s four starts in 2015, he completed 68.6 percent of his throws with five touchdowns and seven interceptions.

Then he had to recover in early 2016, and upon his return he was (again) limited in training camp. When he did play he appeared to be slow and laboring. Then he suffered another broken bone in his back in the preseason, to which he required surgery and rehab again.

These things take a toll on a young body, never mind an older body that has suffered multiple major injuries.

Romo never had rocket launcher arm, but it was his feet, decision making and ability to throw it accurately that made him so effective over the years. He could throw the ball on the run effectively, second only to Aaron Rodgers.

To re-insert Romo now is to assume all of those facets work the way they did in 2014, a season where he could have been named the NFL’s MVP.

The decision making is likely the same, whereas the rest can’t be assumed to function on the same levels as ‘14. And then there is the assumption he can take a hit, to which nothing suggests of late he can.

After starting out brilliantly for the first three months of the season, the Cowboys offense finally looks its driven by a guy who is in his first NFL season.

The Cowboys are going to stick with Dak, even if it means their offense may be a little erratic.

To hand the keys back to Romo, at this point, is premature because it assumes too much.

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