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Have We Seen Precedent For The Tony Romo Situation In Carson Palmer?

RJ Ochoa

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Tony Romo

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Have We Seen Precedent For The Tony Romo Situation In Carson Palmer?

Have We Seen Precedent For The Tony Romo Situation In Carson Palmer?

The calendar may read March, but the CBS commercials for The Masters indicate to sports fans everywhere that April is just around the corner. CBS is relevant not just for sports fans but members of Cowboys Nation, as ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported last Friday that they would like Cowboys Quarterback Tony Romo to join their broadcast team.

The Tony Romo saga is one that has worn on for quite some time. Word on the street is that with the annual NFL Owners meetings happening in Phoenix things could pick up steam, but the precedent for this situation would indicate we all need to buckle in for a much longer ride.

“Precedent? There’s NEVER Been A Situation Like This One With Tony Romo Before In NFL History!”

As sports fans we are all occasionally guilty of being prisoners of the moment. It’s the best ever, the most unique, or the only time this or that has ever happened as far as the current sports landscape is concerned. There’s a common misconception that this is the case with how the Dallas Cowboys appear to be handling the Tony Romo situation within their franchise.

Tony Romo

There’s a common misconception that Tony Romo is in a bind no other franchise quarterback has ever experienced in NFL History. Carson Palmer is here to raise his hand.

How are they handling it exactly? Well Tony Romo is still a member of the Dallas Cowboys, despite supposedly being told that he’d be released on March 9th, 2017. Why is he still on the team, you ask? Tony Romo counts $19.6M against the Cowboys salary cap whether released (a June 1st designation could move half of that amount to 2018), traded, or retired. If the financial hit to the team is the same, why release him for free? That’s how the Cowboys are handling it.

If you’re honest with yourself you’ll admit that you’d probably rather see Tony Romo retired than playing for someone else. This would ensure that the only uniform he ever slipped over his shoulders was that of the Dallas Cowboys – his last in a starting effort was the color rush, talk about curses… – and prohibit someone else from getting better by acquiring his services. Why does it matter if someone else gets better especially to the point that Tony Romo can win a Super Bowl? Newsflash here, but if Tony Romo wins the Super Bowl this season that means that the Dallas Cowboys didn’t.

“This Sounds Unique, So There Obviously Isn’t Any Precedent For This Ever… Like Ever Ever”

This is where the misconception comes in. Due to how beloved – although that sure wasn’t the case even just two years ago – Tony Romo is by Cowboys Nation, the thought is that if the Cowboys “forced” him into retirement it would be an act of cruelty unbeknownst to NFL front offices. Wrong, my friend.

Carson Palmer

Scoff if you will, but Carson Palmer was once to the Cincinnati Bengals what Tony Romo has been to the Dallas Cowboys.

Carson Palmer, now Arizona Cardinal and former Oakland Raider, once upon a time was the number one overall pick (2003, coincidentally the same year Tony Romo went undrafted) by the Cincinnati Bengals. Palmer was the real deal for almost a decade in Cincinnati, but after the 2010 season began to grow tired with the team’s inconsistencies… it probably didn’t help that Bengals fans booed him when he crossed 20,000 career yards.

Now you’re most likely a Cowboys fan so you don’t know the horror of rooting for the Bengals and their tumultuous history, but Carson Palmer is one of the greatest Bengals that ever lived.. so essentially the same type of player in franchise lore that Tony Romo is. Despite this, the Bengals refused to trade him. Carson refused to play for the Bengals anymore and therefore threatened retirement… a route he ultimately chose as Cincinnati and the rest of the NFL prepared for the 2011 season.

Bengals Vs. Palmer: A Retirement Born Of A Bluff

Carson Palmer, then 31, retired from the National Football League. Here we have a classic case of a franchise quarterback “forced” into retirement by the team he did so much for. The Bengals didn’t exactly have a Dak Prescott in the waiting when this whole dealio went down, but they did draft TCU’s Andy Dalton that year so they were properly prepared.

Cincinnati Bengals

Carson Palmer threatened to retire if the Cincinnati Bengals didn’t release him. They didn’t. Sometimes when you bluff, you lose.

No one here is saying that the Cincinnati Bengals are the Dallas Cowboys or that Carson Palmer did as much for them as Tony Romo did for his squad, but the point is that Carson Palmer lost his end of the bluff. He threatened retirement and the Bengals called him on it, so he had no choice. Should Tony Romo, who’s about to turn 37, retire the Cowboys will be on the hook for $19.6M against their salary cap… which is once again the exact same amount that they’d have allotted against them if they released or traded him.

Tony Romo is in the exact same situation with the Dallas Cowboys that Carson Palmer once found himself in with the Cincinnati Bengals. The question that remains to be answered for Romo is whether or not someone will covet him enough, even though he’s six years older than Carson was when he was traded for, to come get him. We’ve seen this song and dance before, and if this is anything like it then we’re going to be waiting for a long time.

The Cincinnati Bengals Made Their Own Bluff, And The Oakland Raiders Bit Hard

Carson Palmer

The Oakland Raiders gave up a 2012 1st Rounder and 2013 2nd Rounder for Carson Palmer, then 31, in the middle of October. Could the Tony Romo situation last just as long?

If Tony Romo decides to go into broadcasting and chooses FOX over CBS, maybe he’ll be hanging out around the World Series this October… and maybe that’s when an NFL team will finally get desperate enough to pony up and trade for him.

The Palmer/Bengals standoff did indeed last all the way until October of 2011, and Cincinnati was extremely smart to wait for him. In return for Carson Palmer the Bengals received:

  • Oakland’s 2012 1st Round Selection, which became CB Dre Kirkpatrick.
  • Oakland’s 2013 2nd Round Selection (would’ve been another 1st if Oakland had made the AFC Championship Game in Palmer’s first two years there), which became RB Gio Bernard.

Cincinnati turned Carson Palmer into two cornerstone players that their franchise uses to this day, even if it’s in a losing/pathetic effort. I remind you again that Tony Romo is six years older than Carson Palmer was when this went down, but this is why the Cowboys won’t “just release” Tony Romo as many fans have petitioned for.

The only incentives that the Cowboys can receive for Tony Romo are trade compensation or the peace that he won’t pose a threat to them if he’s retired, plus the potential of someone getting desperate further down the road like the Raiders did with Palmer. If Romo’s situation ends up mirroring Palmer’s even more then we all need to clear our calendars until October and just schedule a whole bunch of waiting.

Tell us what you think about “Have We Seen Precedent For The Tony Romo Situation In Carson Palmer?” in the comments below. You can also email me at RJ.Ochoa@SlantSports.com, or Tweet to me at @RJOchoa!

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I like long walks on the beach, mystery novels, no just kidding those suck. The Dallas Cowboys were put on this earth for us all to love and appreciate. I do that 24/7/365. I also love chicken parmesan. Let’s roll.

@RJOchoa if you wanna shout!

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1 Comment
  • Martin Hernandez

    Precedent or not, it is wrong for the Cowboys to do this. The Bengals didn’t give up on Carson, Carson gave up on them. In this case, the team gave up on Romo. If they truly believe they made the right choice in going with Dak over Romo, what is there to be afraid of? That Romo and his new team could face and beat the Cowboys with Dak? That shows a lack of confidence in Dak and the team. Being afraid of Romo having success with another team just confirms it was the FO that held him back. That’s what they’re afraid of confirming. Too late.

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Sean’s Scout: RB Rod Smith Proving Valuable Offensive Threat

Sean Martin

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Sean's Scout: RB Rod Smith Proving Valuable Offensive Threat

The Cowboys have just one more game to get through without their star running back Ezekiel Elliott, but Alfred Morris and Rod Smith deserve a ton of credit for the way they’ve been able to fill in out of the backfield for Zeke Elliott. Throughout the time Elliott has missed though, the Cowboys have lacked the explosive plays on offense that he can provide – until Rod Smith was given an opportunity last week at the Giants.

Smith complimented Morris exceptionally well, running with quickness and power to prove his case for more of a role on offense behind Elliott moving forward. It was the Ohio State product’s consecutive touchdowns of 81 yards through the air and 15 yards on the ground that sealed the game for the Cowboys in week 14.

Here is a closer look at Rod Smith’s performance from last week in this latest Sean’s Scout.

Smith3 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

 

The Cowboys offensive line was dominant as always against a tough New York defensive front, and this first play is a great look at their execution in space and on the move. Rod Smith’s decisiveness when hitting the hole with speed and balance was the first thing I noticed on the game tape.

The best thing Smith does on this play comes at the second level, where running backs can truly make a difference in Dallas. As RG Zack Martin rides his man out of the play entirely, he gets in front of Smith who is seeing the play develop straight ahead. With his long strides, Smith is able to smoothly get through traffic and continue accelerating up field through arm tackles for a big gain.

Smith2 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

 

These same traits are seen with Rod Smith as a pass catcher – something he does effortlessly to also help fill the void left by Elliott. Watch how quickly Smith commits to his angle up the field after catching this dump pass from Dak Prescott, attacking a defender that has the angle on him after the catch.

Rod subtly leans to the right just enough to make the defender hesitate long enough to allow his burst to evade him and gain extra yards falling forward.

Smith4 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

 

Smith essentially does the same thing without the ball in his hands here, on his 81 yard catch and run for a touchdown. Setting up the safety out of the slot to be beat across his face, Smith separates from him at the stem and then does a great job getting depth on his route into the vacated middle of the field. With blockers to help him reach the end zone, Smith turns this busted coverage by the Giants into the game’s biggest play.

Smith1 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

 

This last play I chose to show is probably the least well-blocked attempt for Smith out of the ones in this Sean’s Scout, but there is still a lot to like about what Rod does here with the ball in his hands.

The Giants might be a two-win football team, but they still have marquee players up front, particularly DE Olivier Vernon. Smith does well here to keep his feet moving as he cuts this play to the backside. Vernon does well to limit the potential gain on this play by staying away from the block of Jason Witten, as Smith is taken down by Darian Thompson.

The numbers the Giants had to commit to stopping the run was still a huge reason why Prescott had a career day throwing the football, and Rod Smith’s readiness to step in at RB was a deciding factor in getting Dallas to 7-6.

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Proving to be one of the Dallas Cowboys most valuable players, considering his cost (under contract through 2018), and ability to contribute on special teams and offense, Rod Smith is the perfect RB3 for this team.

Smith is not elite in any one area, and is not a prototypical RB from a physical standpoint, but his contributions as a runner, pass catcher, and blocker could remain critical to the Cowboys’ hopes of reaching the playoffs behind this offense – even when Ezekiel Elliott is back in the fold.

Tell us what you think about “Sean’s Scout: RB Rod Smith Proving Valuable Offensive Threat” in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

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Dallas Cowboys

Rod Smith Vs Alfred Morris: Who’s The Cowboys Real RB1?

Brian Martin

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Rod Smith Vs Alfred Morris: Who's Cowboys' Real RB1?

The Dallas Cowboys are less than a week away from welcoming back their talented Pro Bowl running back Ezekiel Elliott, but until then they still have a game to play against the Oakland Raiders. That means we will have one more week of Alfred Morris and Rod Smith handling the workload, but which RB is sitting at the top of the Cowboys depth chart?

Unfortunately, this is exactly the type of decision that can end up winning or losing a game. Both Alfred Morris and Rod Smith have had their moments during Ezekiel Elliott’s absence, but neither one of them have really distanced themselves from the other. So, should Rod Smith or Alfred Morris receive the majority of the workload against the Raiders Sunday?

A Case for Rod Smith

RB Rod Smith and QB Dak PrescottRod Smith might just have had is coming out party last week against the New York Giants. Against their divisional rival, in what was a must win game for the Cowboys, Smith rushed for 47 yards on six carries and added another 113 yards through the air on five catches. He also found himself in the end zone twice, once on a rushing touchdown and the other on a receiving touchdown.

You may or may not agree, but I believe that “Lightning” Rod Smith was largely responsible for igniting the Cowboys offense and helping them pull away from the Giants last Sunday. He accounted for over 160 total yards and two touchdowns by himself and didn’t receive the majority of his playing time until later in the game.

Rod Smith certainly has traits that make him a more desirable RB over Alfred Morris. First off, he is a more complete back. He is better in pass protection and at catching the ball out of the backfield. But, he is also starting to show up in the running game and is averaging 4.5 yards a carry this season. His size (6’3″, 235) also makes him a better short yardage back, although I wish he would deliver more of a blow at the end of his runs.

A Case for Alfred Morris

RB Alfred MorrisAlthough there’s nothing particularly special that stands out about Alfred Morris, he has proven time and time again he is more than capable of carrying the workload. He has received the majority of the workload during Ezekiel Elliott’s suspension and has performed pretty well. In fact, he is averaging 5 yards a carry this season, which is better than any other RB on the Cowboys roster, including Elliott.

Alfred Morris has looked pretty good this season and is playing with more of a spring in his step than I have seen from him in probably his entire career. Last Sunday against the Giants he received the the majority of the workload and finished the game with 19 carries for 62 yards. Not particularly spectacular, but the week prior he did rush for 127 yards on 27 carries in the victory over the Washington Redskins.

Like I mentioned earlier, Morris is a tried-and-true RB in the NFL and is at his best when he can continue to pound the rock and wear down opposing defenses. That is what he did against the Redskins, but he has his limitations as well. Despite his years in the league, he still struggles in pass protection and is limited in what he can do in the passing game. But, he does seem to have the trust of the Cowboys coaching staff.

✭✭✭✭✭

Personally, I would like to see more of Rod Smith this coming Sunday against the Oakland Raiders. I really like what I’ve seen from him in both the running game and in the passing game. I just think he is a more dangerous and versatile weapon then Alfred Morris. His presence on the field really opens up what the Cowboys can do offensively.

I don’t mean any disrespect to Alfred Morris at all. I just think that Rod Smith has proven he is a more dangerous offensive weapon of the two. I don’t know if the Dallas Cowboys coaching staff will agree or not, but I truly believe Rod Smith could once again be the X factor against the Oakland Raiders.

Of course, both Rod Smith and Alfred Morris will have to take the back seat once Ezekiel Elliott returns. So, this discussion really only has any credibility for this week in yet another must win situation against the Oakland Raiders.

Who do you like better… Rod Smith or Alfred Morris?

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La’el Collins’ Toughness And Availability Earning High Praise

Brian Martin

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La'el Collins' Toughness And Availability Earning High Praise 1

The decision by the Dallas Cowboys to move La’el Collins from left guard to right tackle was met by some skepticism by quite a few members of Cowboys Nation during the off-season. I’m not ashamed to admit that I was one of those skeptical of the move, but I’m not afraid to admit he has exceeded my expectations.

In all honesty, I always believed that La’el Collins’ best position in the NFL is on the interior of the offense of line as a guard. I thought he could use his strength and athleticism to his advantage when working in a phone booth against slower and less athletic defensive tackles. That’s not to say I didn’t think he would make a good right tackle, I just thought he had Pro Bowl potential as a guard.

Strangely enough, Collins has probably put together a Pro Bowl caliber season in his first season starting at the right tackle position for the Cowboys. He has become an upgrade over the previous starter Doug Free, and is really starting to earn high praise from the brass. Stephen Jones in particular has been impressed with Collins, especially considering how he has played after missing two full weeks of practice.

Mark Lane on Twitter

DallasCowboys COO Stephen Jones told @1053thefan La’el Collins has answered the bell after his contract extension.

I personally agree with everything Stephen Jones said about La’el Collins. I’ve really enjoyed watching his progression this season, but I have been really impressed how he played the last two weeks after missing so much practice.

You might not of known, but Collins has missed two full weeks of practice due to a herniated disc in his back. This is put his availability to play against the Washington Redskins and New York Giants in jeopardy, but somehow he has toughened up and played considerably well.

This unfortunately will be something he has to continue to battle through the rest of the season, but I’m not going to bet against him playing. He absolutely makes this offensive line better and I would hate to see Chaz Green or Byron Bell back on the field after the way they played as feel-ins.

La’el Collins has without a doubt earned my respect and I think it’s about time we all recognize the player he is turning into. I know the Dallas Cowboys appreciate all that he does and believe that his recent contract extension is money well spent.

What do you think about La’el Collins?

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