This is the last Friday that we will have to endure without the NFL in our lives for the rest of 2015. Let that sink in.
The footballiest time of the year is on the horizon and it’s a great time to be alive. The Dallas Cowboys kick off their season next Sunday at home against the New York Giants. How many days away is that exactly? Tony! Tell us!
Thanks, Romo. I can’t wait to try a crownie or two, or seventeen, in 9 days.
That’s right, baby. 9 days. SINGLE DIGITS.
Our Countdown To Kickoff series here at Inside The Star has reviewed the Greatest Cowboys to wear each jersey number. We started 90 days ago with #99 so if you have some time on your hands (like 18 hours) go back and read them all! I’ll share my crownies with you.
I hope you practiced your spin move. We’re about to get going with the Greatest 9 in Dallas Cowboys History. Let’s roll.
The Following Players Have All Worn 9 For The Dallas Cowboys:
*Active player on the Dallas Cowboys roster
Herm Edwards once said, “You play to win the game!” That’s why we’re all here, right? That’s why we lift all them weights. We spend each and every season believing that this is the year. This is our time.
The Greatest #9 in Dallas Cowboys History has played each and every snap of his career with a sense of greatness that exemplifies that exact hunger and drive. He has played not just as if this is the year, but also as if this snap, as if this throw, as if this is the moment.
He has given us his absolute all.
The next time that you see the Dallas Cowboys on a football field it will be for real. Games will count, statistics will be recorded, and the journey will officially begin towards Super Bowl 50 in Santa Clara, California.
When the game is over and confetti rains down in Santa Clara, Jim Nantz is going to hand over the Vince Lombardi Trophy… to the Greatest 9 in Dallas Cowboys History.
Do you remember what you were doing on October 23rd, 2006? Let me remind you.
“Romo! Romo! Romo!”
The chants were deafening within Texas Stadium as the Dallas Cowboys trotted to the locker room at halftime on Monday night against the New York Giants. This was Monday Night Football. The New York Giants were in OUR house. The house of the Dallas Cowboys. Where we demand excellence.
The lives of each and every Dallas Cowboys fan were made better at halftime when then Head Coach Bill Parcells (now Pro Football Hall of Famer, mind you) decided to pull quarterback Drew Bledsoe in favor of Antonio Ramiro Romo.
Signed as an undrafted rookie free agent in 2003, Tony Romo was relatively unknown. After failing to get drafted, two other Eastern Illinois alumni showed some interest in Romo: Mike Shanahan, then Head Coach of the Denver Broncos, and Sean Payton, then Assistant Head Coach/Quarterbacks Coach for the Dallas Cowboys. Romo felt that he had the best shot to make the Cowboys roster so he packed his bags and set sail for Dallas.
Tony entered that 2006 Monday Night Game against the Giants the same way that he runs out on the field today, with sheer joy and love for the game. That’s what has made Romo special all of these years, he plays the game the way that we all wish that we could, and with an attitude that we all wish that we had.
Teach Me How To Romo
The early days of Tony Romo were some of the most incredible games to watch for Dallas Cowboys fans. In his first career start at Texas Stadium he showed us the way that he can lead a team as the Cowboys gave the 9-0 Colts - and eventual Super Bowl XLI Champions, by the way - their first loss of the season.
Oh and a week later he threw for 5 touchdowns on Thanksgiving – no big deal.
Thrilling victories have become a staple of the Cowboy QB. Just a week after tossing those 5 touchdowns Romo went up to the Meadowlands and won a thriller against the G-Men. He has become synonymous with epic games.
In 2007, the Cowboys traveled to Buffalo for another Monday Night contest. Despite throwing 5 interceptions, Romo rallied the team and was able to put up 9 points in the final 24 seconds to squeak out a 25-24 victory. With Tony Romo as your starting quarterback, things are always interesting.
2007, St. Louis Rams, you know what play I’m talking about.
Sharing this clip bc Im a fan not because Im trying to get rich from highlight clips. The No Fun League is pulling all these clips off YouTube.
Tony Romo has demonstrated this uncanny ability to make plays when things seem like they’re about to come crashing down. It’s not a skill that can be taught, it’s just being special… and that’s what Romo is.
Consider that Tony Romo went from undrafted rookie to star quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys. How freaking incredible is that? It’s literally the American Dream.
There is a magic about Romo, there’s no doubt about that. It’s a combination of a lot of things, really.
There’s grit - and Tony Romo is a warrior. The guy suffered broken ribs AND a punctured lung and still came back to rally his team to victory over the San Francisco 49ers in 2011.
How about that time he actually broke his back against the Washington Redskins in 2013 and, with the season on the line, still threw the game-winning touchdown to DeMarco Murray? His will to win is unmatched.
If you’re going to go to battle, Tony Romo can lead you there.
Over the course of the last few seasons in Dallas he has really embodied the “C” that he wears on his chest. Dez Bryant, one of the most passionate players throughout the entire NFL, lays out for Romo. He's the type of quarterback that players want to fight for. He brings out the best in his teammates and raises the overall caliber of play.
As obvious as it is, there is a magic to Romo’s magic. You simply cannot explain some of the plays he makes or how he makes them. Need some proof?
This exhibit is a vintage JJ Watt from 2014, only last year’s Defensive Player of the Year. While he wasn't at the jugs machine catching passes for no reason at all he completely whiffs here when Tony puts on the classic Romo Spin Move.
Not enough for you?
How about when he put the same move on Bruce Irvin one week later?
This pass came on a pivotal 3rd and 20 which kept the drive alive, allowing the Cowboys to put the exclamation point on their signature win of the 2014 regular season.
So much is made about comparing quarterbacks to one another.
Super Bowl Rings, MVP trophies, and passing yard titles are always the determining factors, but I think we should consider something else.
Tony Romo has developed into one of the most dependable quarterbacks in the National Football League. With him under center, you always have a shot. Always.
Excluding 2010 (Romo only started the first 6 games before suffering a season-ending injury), with Tony Romo under center the Dallas Cowboys have never - not one single time - played a game where they were mathematically eliminated from playoff contention.
That’s right, every single game that Tony Romo has ever played for the Dallas Cowboys has mattered. Among all other notable NFL quarterbacks, the same can only be said of Tom Brady and Joe Flacco.
Think about that. You have not once gone Christmas shopping with the Cowboys out of it. That is an incredible gift that Tony Romo has given us over the course of his career. He can never be counted out.
#9: Tony Romo
This era of Dallas Cowboys football will hold a special place in all of our hearts when it is over. Tony Romo has been the epitome of stability for the Dallas Cowboys since he stepped into our lives on the evening of October 23rd, 2006.
Among many, many others… Tony Romo’s Cowboy resume includes:
- 2,743 Completions (2nd in Dallas Cowboys History)
- 33,270 Passing Yards (1st in Dallas Cowboys History)
- 242 Passing Touchdowns (1st in Dallas Cowboys History)
- 257.9 Yards Per Game (1st in Dallas Cowboys History)
- 97.6 Career Passer Rating (2nd in NFL History)
October 23rd falls on a Friday this year, but guess who the Dallas Cowboys play two days later on Sunday? The New York Giants. It will mark the 9-year anniversary of when #9 marched his way into our lives.
When teams win championships there is always a certain magic that surrounds them, things that happen for no reason other than destiny. The Greatest 9 in Dallas Cowboys History, Tony Romo is that magic. This season feels like destiny.
Check back tomorrow to read about the Greatest #8 in Dallas Cowboys History!
Cowboys Defense is Ready to Win Now, Time for Offense to Prove the Same
The Dallas Cowboys lead the NFC East at 1-1, and have a favorable schedule ahead of them. With such an inexperienced roster, early season growing pains were expected, and likely should be still as the team comes off their first win to play in Seattle on Sunday.
Through a season opening clunker in Carolina and hard-earned divisional win against the Giants, the Cowboys have exceeded already high expectations on defense.
With the currently 0-2 Seahawks, Lions, and Texans awaiting Dallas, the time is now for Scott Linehan's offense to hit their stride. It will take more than a five week assessment to determine if the Cowboys are truly playoff contenders for 2018, but it could take even less than that for Cowboys Nation to realize this team is fighting an uphill battle at QB and WR.
Following Dak Prescott's 64-yard touchdown pass to Tavon Austin against the Giants, the Cowboys punted on four of their remaining seven drives. The Cowboys did a better job mixing up their early down play calling to remain ahead of the chains for most of the night, but even still their execution was lacking. Finishing three of ten on third downs, the Cowboys didn't sustain the type of originality on offense that earned them an early cushion.
Thankfully, the Cowboys turning back the clock to 2016 on a clinching touchdown drive of 14 plays would be all the defense needed. Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott would both convert a pair of first downs on the ground. The Cowboys took a 20-3 lead, and more importantly the game clock down to 5:45 with an eight minute and 23 second march.
As such, the Cowboys offense is an enigma. With the return of Brice Butler, the team is currently carrying seven wide receivers and four tight ends.
On defense, the Cowboys are expecting reinforcements in Xavier Woods, Randy Gregory, and David Irving to further bolster this aggressive, blitzing unit in the coming weeks. For the offense, Dallas must make the most out of the unknown depth they have, without any drastic change in style around the corner.
The Cowboys record under Prescott proves they're at their best when Dak is efficient. The ceiling for a new-look Cowboys offense built for Dak is not as high for this reason. Through just two weeks, it's clear that the Cowboys offense will be as good as the sum of its parts - instead of relying on any individual talents.
Cowboys' record when Dak Prescott ... Doesn't throw an interception: 20-4 Records at least a 100.0 passer rating: 15-1 Commits no turnovers: 18-1
After a strong preseason from rookie Wide Receiver Michael Gallup, the third-round pick has played less than half his team's offensive snaps through two games. Cole Beasley has seemed to regain his connection with Prescott, snagging a team high nine catches so far. Terrance Williams has been a non-factor, and the same is surprisingly said about FA acquisition Allen Hurns.
Regardless of what the Cowboys do over the coming weeks, a few narratives and lingering questions about the team feel evident. With the defense set to tee off against the Seahawks sub par OL this week, Rod Marinelli's unit will still likely not receive the credit it deserves heading into week four.
With the task at hand being maintaining their standing atop the division, the Cowboys must also be out to prove they can sustain success without a consistent passing game.
All of this to effectively say, the Cowboys are going to Seattle expecting to control the game on defense. To finish off Russell Wilson in his home opener (already at 0-2), it will take a sharper performance for a full four quarters on offense too.
A win at the Seahawks might not mean as much as it has in past seasons, but in improving the Cowboys record to 2-1 on the way back to AT&T Stadium, it could be all the confidence they need to understand the NFC East is theirs for the taking while continuing to truly find their identity.
Week 6 Own by nfl
Cowboys Defense So Far So Good as Seahawks Up Next
Dallas may only be 1-1 on the season, but the Cowboys are officially tied for first-place in the NFC East, and fresh off a workmanlike victory over divisional rivals, the New York Giants. It was a game they should have won, and did win, but the takeaways so early in the season are that, although the offense has not clicked on all cylinders, the defense is getting high praise.
The Cowboys sacked New York’s Eli Manning six times and limited the No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 draft, Saquon Barkley, to a mere 28 yards rushing. It was also a night in which Dak Prescott not only out-gained Barkley by 17 yards on the ground, but torched the Giants’ secondary on a 64-yard touchdown strike to Tavon Austin which proved New York’s Safety Landon Collins wrong when leading up to this game he remarked that the key to a Giants’ victory would be getting Prescott to throw. When Prescott was made aware of the comment in a midweek interview he replied, "…challenge accepted," and the third-year veteran made good on his word leading to the 20-13 victory.
However, Prescott ended the night with just 160 yards passing yet the ankle injury he sustained in Week 1 showed no signs of rearing its head as Prescott moved seamlessly in the pocket and ran the ball well.
As we move ahead to the Cowboys meeting in Seattle, we take a quick check over to one of the most reputable online sportsbooks in the industry - Intertops according to the reviews - where we can monitor the line on this pivotal NFC clash as the week progresses.
Seattle boasts a talented quarterback of their own in Russell Wilson but one who will find the sledding tough if the Dallas defense continues to shut down All-World wide outs like Odell Beckham Jr. and contain future rushing stars like Saquon Barkley. Outside of Wilson, Seattle is not loaded offensively, with their biggest target, Doug Baldwin, ailing with a knee injury and a backfield which consists of two young rushers in second-year man Chris Carson and a first-round rookie in Rashaad Penny who dealt with nagging injuries throughout the preseason and looked unsettled in Seattle’s 27-24 loss to the Broncos.
The Cowboys defense has already proven its worth in Carolina with Cam Newton under center and again last week against New York. The unit is surrendering an average of 14 ½ points per game and is incorporating more blitz packages than we’ve come to expect.
The difference this year is that the players they have on defense are capable of getting to the quarterback quick enough so that the coverage linebackers and secondary aren’t alone on an island for too long. The one concern is the status of Linebacker Sean Lee, who checked out of the game in the fourth quarter Sunday night and brought to mind his hamstring issues of a year ago, but apparently it was in fact cramping, and not straining, of the hammy which allowed Lee to return.
The bottom line in terms of the Cowboys' upcoming matchup on Sunday afternoon is that they will get the Seahawks coming off a short week, as Seattle played on Monday night and should be relatively healthy for the contest.
Dak Prescott may not have the formidable offensive line that he has had in the past, nor a top-tier arsenal of receivers, but he does have the elusive Ezekiel Elliott in the backfield and is capable of extricating himself from pressure situations when no target is available.
If the Dallas defense continues to play at the current level, it will not only be limiting the opposition on the scoreboard but putting its offense in good field position throughout. So check out Intertops, one of the most trusted and reputable online sportsbooks, to see where this line goes because a Dallas win and an ATS cover are just days away.
Taco Tuesday: Cowboys DE Taco Charlton Starting to Dominate?
There has been quite a bit of talk about what a bad decision it was for the Dallas Cowboys to draft Taco Charlton with their first-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. Nearly everybody wanted someone different, not a player that needed time to develop.
Well, fast forward a year later and it looks as if the Cowboys made the right decision.
Don't look now, but Defensive End Taco Charlton is starting to live up to that first-round pedigree. In the first two weeks of the 2018 season, Charlton has already looked like a much improved player from what we saw a season ago. Imagine that, a little bit of time to develop and he's turning into a solid player.
I know I may be getting a little bit ahead of myself, especially suggesting that he is starting to dominate, but I can't help myself. I'm that excited about how much he has improved in one offseason. I may be alone here, but I have high hopes he could turn into something special.
In 2017, Taco Charlton failed to start a single game for the Dallas Cowboys as a rookie. That's not really what you want from your first-round draft pick. To makes matters worse, in 16 games he only registered 25 total tackles, four QB sacks, two passes defensed, and one forced fumble. As you can imagine, it didn't sit well with most Cowboys fans.
Luckily, it looks as if Charlton's offseason in the Dallas Cowboys strength and conditioning program has paid off. Already in 2018 he has accumulated six total tackles, one QB sack, one pass defensed, and recovered a fumble. If he keeps this pace up, we could be looking at #97 reaching double-digit sacks this year.
Now, I wouldn't call what Taco Charlton has accomplished so far this season dominating, but he is proving to be a starting quality DE along the Cowboys defensive line. It's a unit that has looked really good in the first two weeks of the season and is expected to be even better once Randy Gregory and David Irving are able to return to the field.
In the meantime, the Dallas Cowboys are happy to get plays like this from Taco Charlton.
Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.
This is a play Charlton is expected to make. He was left unblocked, but we've seen players left unblocked before not make the play. So, it may not be as impressive as some QB sacks. But, I'll take the routine tackle any day over someone trying to make a splash play and failing.
If you're looking for an impressive play from Taco Charlton, take a look at what he was able to do against Odell Beckham Jr. in the passing game.
Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.
In case you're wondering, that's Taco Charlton in OBJ's hip pocket 15 yards down the field in pass coverage. It looks as if that's where Eli Manning was wanting to go with the ball, but tight coverage by the Cowboys, and Charlton, across the board ended up resulting in a QB sack.
If you don't find that impressive, I don't know what will. A 275 pound DE covering arguably the best and highest paid wide receiver down the field is almost unheard of. I would count that as impressive.
What do you think of Taco Charlton's play so far in 2018?
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