All off-season long we’ve discussed expectations of a certain Dallas Cowboys quarterback. It has been questioned if Tony Romo is the next Dan Marino and it has been questioned about the what if’s (i.e. what if Romo didn’t bobble the snap etc etc) But should the expectations of the Dallas Cowboy fans and the media be higher for Tony Romo or Jason Garrett?
If asking Dallas Cowboy fans who are just that, fans of the game and tend to take a break during the off-season as well as asking fans of other organizations they will be the first to tell you Tony Romo is a choke artist. He can’t win the big games, he cracks under pressure. We’ve heard it all from so-called sports experts, want to be sports experts and fans of the NFL in general. Taking a closer look though is it really Tony Romo’s fault? Does he consistently call his own plays as say Ben Roethlisberger, Tom Brady or Peyton Manning does? To the best of this writer’s knowledge he is given the play calls from Jason Garrett with two options one which will more than likely be run and a play he can audible too. Tony Romo has played for Dallas one season longer than Jason Garrett has been a play caller for Dallas.
In 2006, they went to the playoffs without Garrett calling the plays. In 2007 they went to the playoffs and lost to the Giants. Since then it’s been a roller coaster ride. However, fans seem to want to blame someone and in the end it is more than likely going to be the quarterback whether deserved or undeserved. Tony Romo is statistically a top 5 quarterback and he has very good 4th quarter stats regardless of what you hear from the main stream media. Yes he might go down as a similarity to a Dan Marinoor a Danny White typed quarterback, someone who can’t win the big games or an elusive Superbowl Ring, but is it completely his fault?
Now let’s look at Jason Garrett. There are two main things that have always made this writer question the play calling that has been going on since Garrett took over as offensive coordinator in 2007. The first is the embarrassing close out of Texas Stadium. Being from Maryland, I heard a lot of local media report over and over on that game. The thing that has always stuck in this writers mind is an interview locally (not sure if it was nationally noted as well) where a Ravens player was interviewed and said by the end of that dreadful game, Garrett’s play calling was as easy to predict as a Dr. Seuss book. The other bothersome thing has always been with the amount of talent on the field and yet they are unable to execute the plays called. The next game that swiftly comes to mind is the dreaded Detroit game last season. With a pretty solid lead, the Dallas Cowboys come out throwing the ball? Garrett has always been too quick to abandon the run in a lot of games. It’s not inaccurate to say that the days of “ground and pound” football are by the wayside for now and this is the time of the quarterback but every offense needs a balanced play calling or as close to one as they can get. When comparing stats on Jason Garrett there are two major stats that have gone down over the course of Garrett’s play calling those are Red Zone Scoring Percentage & Red Zone Scores per game. In order to win games there has to be scoring in the red zone in particularly.
In this writers humble opinion, Jason Garrett has more to prove to fans this season than Tony Romo does especially with all the rookie head coaching mistakes and clock management problems and first and foremost, offensive play calling.