… And Jerry(Brown) and Josh(Brent) were ball players. We do what we know how to do and on Sunday we know how to play football. We do so today with our teammates and their families on our minds and in our hearts’
FOX sideline reporter, Laura Okmin, said QB, Tony Romo, told her that before his Dallas Cowboys played the Cincinnati Bengals when she asked him how the Cowboys were going to play this game while dealing with the tragic, fatal, car accident the day before. That accident took the life of Cowboys practice squad LB, Jerry Brown Jr and left the driver – Jerry’s good friend and Cowboys teammate, NT Josh Brent, under arrest for intoxication manslaughter. (An unimaginable tragedy and my thoughts and prayers go out to Jerry Brown Jr’s family and, also to Josh Brent and his family.)
The Cowboys came from behind and won this imperfect but hard fought, emotional game 20 – 19 in dramatic fashion, a Dan Bailey field goal as time expired. As important as the win was for their slim playoff hopes, as good as it was to see that our Cowboys don’t quit, the entire game experience remained overshadowed by the prior day’s tragedy. As well it should have.
All would be understood and accepted, no matter how the team, together or individually, responded to such a terrible event. Our Cowboys played and won. That’s a good thing. Winning the game wasn’t necessary, but it was good just the same. The Bengals played hard and played to win. There are no gimmies in the NFL, the Cowboys earned this win. But even if they would’ve lost, the very fact that these Dallas Cowboys – players, coaches and staff – flew to Cincinnati and played their scheduled game tells me all I need to know.
Now I understand, not dissimilar to all of us in dealing with loss in our respective walks of life. We go on. I get it how the Dallas Cowboys were able to play this Sunday – how the Kansas City Chiefs were able to play last Sunday. Tony Romo said it. They’re football players, they do what they know how to do, and on Sunday they know how to play football.
- Artie Cappello