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Tony Romo: The Harsh Reality I Had To Come To Terms With

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Cowboys Blog - Tony Romo: The Harsh Reality I Had To Come To Terms With 2

How long did it take you to finally appreciate Tony Romo?

Did it happen quickly? Did you immediately fall in love when he entered that game in 2006? Was it after his first playoff victory in 2009? Was it last year when he played as efficient as it gets leading the Cowboys to a 12-4 record with a playoff victory? Or was it this season, when you realized what life is like without number nine under center?

You don't know what you got 'til it's gone.

One of the most important sayings in this world holds true when it comes to Tony Romo.

The saddest part...the end may be sooner than any of us want to think it is...myself included.

While I have firmly believed the Cowboys should address the quarterback position via the draft for the past couple years, I have always thought it would be so that Romo could train the young player and we could have a seamless transition in a couple of years.

I always childishly thought that Romo would be my quarterback forever. As a 23-year-old Dallas Cowboys fan, Romo was the first great Cowboys quarterback I ever got to watch. I have several different versions of his jersey. I have his FatHead on the wall of my basement, with a signed picture of him accompanying it. My girlfriend painted a picture of Romo and Dez and that hangs in my bedroom. Tony Romo is that connection that I have from childhood to adulthood. Someone that will always be very important to me.

Cowboys Blog - Tony Romo: The Harsh Reality I Had To Come To Terms With 5

Framed painting of Tony Romo and Dez Bryant hangs in my bedroom

With that being said, it really hit a nerve this weekend when I heard about how the hit Romo took in week one against the Giants brought him back to where he was in week one against the 49ers in 2014.

Tony Romo played a large portion of 2014 and with an entire offseason, I thought we would see a Tony Romo as healthy as he's been in some time. The back should have been stronger. The aches and pains you get from playing such a physical sport your entire life should be lessened...and BOOM...one hit sends Romo right back to where he was.

Then there is the obvious, the fractured collarbone which he re-fractured just one week after returning.

All of this put together made me sit and think about this. One hit sent Romo back to where he was in week one of 2014? Someone so sparingly hit is getting hurt this often? Romo needed a day off on the Wednesday before his return against the Dolphins after sitting for all those weeks? What is really going on with my quarterback?

The reality is...Tony Romo is not what he used to be physically. I think we all tend to remove ourselves from the human aspect of pro sports and celebrities in general. Think about it, you play one game of football and I bet you wake up the next day as sore as could be. Yes, that is probably because you are doing something that your muscles aren't used to. So then imagine playing an entire season of football, or any sport for that matter. I bet you wake up everyday with some sort of ache or pain. You get that numb feeling in your shoulder or your knee, etc. where you just feel the fatigue.

Picture that...but magnify it across twenty or so years. Think back to the Tony Romo playing football and basketball in high school. Then the same guy playing in college...and so on and so forth. Think about all the hits he has taken. Think about all the days and nights he has felt sore or achy. Take into account the amount of serious injuries Romo has sustained over his career. It all starts to add up.

Cowboys Blog - Tony Romo: The Harsh Reality I Had To Come To Terms With 3

Tony Romo's FatHead hangs in my basement next to a signed photo

Yes, there have been plenty of players who have played much later into their careers. Look at Tom Brady still dominating at 38 and Peyton Manning finally starting to regress at 39. These are nice stories, but every player is different and father-time chooses to strike people at different times.

Tony Romo plays a much different type of football than Manning or Brady. Romo has made a living off of being athletic. No, he's not Russell Wilson or Michael Vick, but Romo would scramble, avoid pressure, take heavy hits...all while making big plays.

Cowboys Blog - Tony Romo: The Harsh Reality I Had To Come To Terms With 1

Tony Romo puts the "Romo Spin" on JJ Watt

We know that Romo has taken Toradol a ton of times over his career.

Toradol is a heavy-duty anti-inflammatory drug. It reduces hormones that cause inflammation and pain in the body. Toradol is a very controversial drug in sports today as the long-term effects of the drug are unknown.

His performance last season against the Philadelphia Eagles on Thanksgiving can be attributed to lack of Toradol in some minds. With the quick turnaround, it would be unhealthy for Romo to have taken another dose of Toradol for that Thanksgiving game.

Cowboys Blog - Tony Romo: The Harsh Reality I Had To Come To Terms With

The controversial anti-inflammatory drug, Toradol

This made me think about Romo's performances on Thanksgiving as of late. In 2014, Romo was 18-29 for 199 yards with 0 TDs and 2 INTs, good for a 53.7 QB rating. In 2015, Romo was 11-21 for 106 yards with 0 TDs and 3 INTs, good for a 27.2 QB rating.

Since injuring his back, Romo has chucked up two of his worst career performances ever, on Thanksgiving. I wonder what we can expect from Romo on a short week in the future. Can both of these instances be attributed to lack of Toradol? Are the aches and pains from football so extreme that Romo can't play in a short week? If Romo needs to sit every Wednesday practice, and we see what he does when forced to play on a Thursday, what does that tell you?

Then there is this which I found in a New York Times article about Toradol:

"The limit I’m worried about is, does it dull the pain so much that it dulls the body part they’ve injured?" said Dr. Carla C. Keirns, a medical ethicist at Stony Brook University, adding that athletes could be prone to reinjury because the warning signs of pain are muted.

If all of that isn't enough to cause concern for Tony Romo, he is entering his age 36 season. To expect him to come back healthy and continue to be great would be expecting too much. Can he come back and play 16 games and lead this team to a great season? Of course he can. However, you have to consider some of the things that will happen to a quarterback who is 36 years old.

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At ages 35-36, quarterbacks see a drop off in their play. Keep in mind, we didn't see Tony Romo play his age 35 season due to injury. We should see decreased arm strength. Will Romo be able to hit the deep ball like he did two years ago? Will he be able to throw an out route from the slot to the sideline with velocity? Will he have the same touch we expect? Will he be able to do some of the athletic pocket moves that make him so special?

More importantly, will Tony Romo be thinking about his back and shoulder when the defense is caving down on him? You can make an argument that protecting his back is why Romo has gone down like he has when injuring his collarbone. Not to mention the rib issues that he has had over his career.

I am as big a fan of Tony Romo as you will ever meet. It was hard coming to this realization. Part of me knew this was going to come, but I wanted to refuse the thought as long as I could. Unfortunately, this came quick during the 2015 season.

It is extremely important for the Dallas Cowboys to have a plan in place in case they have less of Tony Romo than they thought. I think you have Jerry Jones feeling the same way I do, and most fans do about Romo. We want to refuse the thought that we will ever see number 9 hang it up one day.

While we have that guy, it is extremely important to not only back him up, but to use the opportunity to have a young quarterback sit, watch and learn from Tony Romo. It could be a real luxury to not have to thrust someone into the fire so early. Don't make the mistake of waiting too long and not letting your young quarterback learn and be as ready as possible. Tony Romo is as good a player to learn from on-the-field and off-the-field.

Nobody wants the day when someone other than Tony Romo is behind center. It will hurt even more if they are not prepared when that day comes.



I've been blogging about sports and music for almost eight years now. I also work in media relations for a New York sports team, so I understand the bridge between the outlets writing about a team and the team monitoring content. I hope to bring something new to Inside The Star, getting deep into draft work, breakdowns and I always come with a strong and passionate opinion. I'm very active on Twitter, so ask questions, comment on stuff, etc. and I will almost definitely respond to you in some sort of debate!

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20 Comments
  • http://PigskinHub.com Zac Fields

    Great article.

    I completely understand when I see people suggest that they would hate to see Jared Goff or Paxton Lynch or Carson Wentz get drafted by the Cowboys this year. I understand that these are guys who, best-case-scenario, would add nothing to your 2016 season. I get the instant gratification mindset that goes along with drafting a cornerback, or a linebacker, or a defensive lineman. Man, even another Dez-level wide receiver in Laquon Treadwell. I get that it's a lot more fun for next year when you have a rookie at the #4 overall pick who will actually see the field.

    The reality is that we don't know how much longer Tony Romo has in this game. There is a part of me that feels like 2016 is going to be it for Romo. I hope that's not true, but if he spends another 13 weeks on the injury report, you have to wonder if Romo AND the Cowboys would agree that it's time to hang them up at that point.

    For me, if you believe the Cowboys are in agreement with you in not wanting to draft Goff, Lynch, or Wentz then you absolutely must be assuming that either Johnny Manziel or Robert Griffin III will be wearing a star next season. If Romo breaks his clavicle in Week One next year, the fans aren't going to sit through another season like 2015…. they shouldn't be expected to. The Cowboys shouldn't –and won't– plan it that way. They should feel an obligation to shore up that backup quarterback position significantly this off-season, and their recent strategy of 30+ year old veterans back there has not proven successful.

    I am 110% positive that, one way or the other, there will be a #2 quarterback in Dallas next year who gets people excited, and that guy is not currently on the roster today.

  • Blue Star

    It was Last year when he minimized the stupid turnovers. I don't believe Tony Romo will be the starting QB at the end of 2016 season.

  • https://insidethestar.com/ Bryson Treece

    It's not what most fans want to see, and if Romo gets hurt and misses significant time again next season, fans will get nasty with Garrett and Co, but take a QB high and let him learn. The best QBs in the modern Era of Football had time to learn the NFL system without the weekly pressure of starting games. Tony Romo will be an excellent teacher for Goff or Wentz next year, and possibly the year after that, too. The front office needs to be smart and accept that fans may not be happy with it next season, and do it anyway.

    Sent from the Pigskin Hub – Pro Football Forums app for Android. Get it at bit.ly/PigskinHub

  • Blue Star

    Do y'all really feel Romo would be a good teacher? I don't see it. Look at his teaching with Weeden, Cassel, McGee, and Moore. Romo improvises too much to be a teacher of the game.

  • https://insidethestar.com/ Bryson Treece

    I do, yes. He's learned the hard way how to read defenses pre-snap and that is valuable knowledge to pass on to a younger guy. Weeden, Cassel, and Moore aren't the same as a rookie because they have experience and with the exception of Weeden in Cleveland, weren't expected to be starters when they first started. But it's not just Romo, it's also Garrett and Wade Wilson, and that combination can be a great tool.

  • RJ Ochoa

    I don't think Tony ever taught Cassel or Weeden. McGee is a great example though. Plus this time it'd be different. The message from the front office is to groom this guy. Not just, "hey here's your backup."

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  • Blue Star
    RJ Ochoa

    I don't think Tony ever taught Cassel or Weeden. McGee is a great example though. Plus this time it'd be different. The message from the front office is to groom this guy. Not just, "hey here's your backup."

    Sent from my iPhone using Pigskin Hub – Pro Football Forums mobile app

    You get players ready to be the guy no matter backup or future.

  • RJ Ochoa

    Right. But if we're going to blame Tony we need to blame everyone for not adequately preparing them. He's QB1, not the Quarterbacks Coach.

    Sent from my iPad using Pigskin Hub – Pro Football Forums mobile app

  • cjprine

    I think financially we need Romo to play 2 more seasons!
    The problem on taking a QB 4th overall is-it's a must hit, dead on future of your franchise-this is the direction of your franchise! There has to be 100% certainty that this QB can be the bloodline of your team! From what I've read these guys, and again just my opinion not fact–these Qbs have high upside but also come with risk!
    I feel our secondary has been garbage for a while and it doesn't look any brighter we have to invest because unless our future QB can score 30pts a game I.E Tony Romo it ain't going to matter! We manage to let Colt McCoy look like a freaking HOF legend when we play him! Maybe our secondary needs a face lift! Several losses I put in our defense-we just couldn't stop when it counted!

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  • cjprine

    Where is McGee now?!

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  • http://www.pigskinhub.com/forum/index.php?forums/dallas-cowboys/ Jess Haynie
    cjprine

    Where is McGee now?!

    Played in the CFL in 2013 and hasn't been heard from since.

  • RJ Ochoa

    @cjprine you're totally right. I've written extensively on why I don't want a QB at 4. Even IF you hit on him, you're right, you're not seeing him play for at least two seasons. So while literally every other team is getting better in the first round and taking a step forward… We're taking a step sideways. I have no problem getting a QB later who we think is valuable in the future, but not with the 4th pick.

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  • cjprine

    I have read it, and totally agree!

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  • Blue Star
    Bryson T.

    I do, yes. He's learned the hard way how to read defenses pre-snap and that is valuable knowledge to pass on to a younger guy. Weeden, Cassel, and Moore aren't the same as a rookie because they have experience and with the exception of Weeden in Cleveland, weren't expected to be starters when they first started. But it's not just Romo, it's also Garrett and Wade Wilson, and that combination can be a great tool.

    RJ Ochoa

    Right. But if we're going to blame Tony we need to blame everyone for not adequately preparing them. He's QB1, not the Quarterbacks Coach.

    Sent from my iPad using Pigskin Hub – Pro Football Forums mobile app

    You are right. The Collaboration of Wade Wilson, Jason Garrett, and Tony Romo have all been on the team together since 2007. All the QB failures are a reflection on all of them. What is going to make drafting a QB with these bozos leading them to be an NFL QB. This combo has been a horrible to any QB with or without NFL experience. Weeden does good in a completely different offense more than half way through the season with no running game.

  • http://www.pigskinhub.com/forum/index.php?forums/dallas-cowboys/ Jess Haynie

    It hasn't been talked about much but there's been a locker room issue for a long time when it comes to the clique of Romo, Witten, Garrett, and I assume Wade Wilson as well. It first showed up in 2008 when there was a major divide between the wide receivers, led by Terrell Owens and the WR coach at the time (can't remember or find his name), and "The Clique." Then we saw it again with the relationship Jon Kitna had with Romo and Garrett. There was clearly an issue two years ago that made Kyle Orton fake a retirement to get out of his contract.

    It's obviously not so big that it's caused problems on the field or guys not to play hard, but it may speak to why we haven't seen much investment in or development from the QBs during the Romo/Garrett/Wilson era. IDK if they have too much of an "upper class" mentality and treat the rest of the QBs like crap or what, but it's hard to argue.

  • Nick Cocchiaro

    I don't think there is a problem with Tony Romo's ability to teach a young QB, Garrett's ability, Wilson's ability nor do I see a problem with a clique. The problem with the backup QBs as well as with the lack of development for Stephen McGee is that Tony Romo himself was developing as a passer. Over the last 2-3 years, we've seen a dramatically different Tony Romo. He learned how to read defenses and make changes on his own far more than he ever had. He learned different arm angles and ball placements. He's talked about how his placement of balls has kept him away from interceptions while giving receivers the chance to make a catch. Now we are in veteran Tony Romo mode. He has learned all there is to learn and we won't really see his game reach new levels anymore. He can now teach someone instead of spending all the time to make himself better. It's a completely different situation now than it was 2 or more years ago

  • http://www.pigskinhub.com/forum/index.php?forums/dallas-cowboys/ Jess Haynie

    That's a fair point, but other teams have been able to develop more than one QB at the same time. Look at how Cassel played for the Patriots back in 2008. A.J. McCarron stepped in nicely for Andy Dalton this year. Pittsburgh always has backup QBs who contribute well. Or how about Aaron Rodgers' development despite, as is well known, a contentious relationship with Brett Favre?

    Just seems like Dallas has a systemic issue, however minor, which has manifested at various points during the Romo/Garrett era.

  • Nick Cocchiaro

    You can also argue that all of those players (besides Cassel) are better than what we had. Cassel was terrible outside of New England. McCarron is a solid backup QB in this league and Rodgers…well he's Rodgers. Yes, you can argue plenty of teams got more out of their backups, but our scheme is more intricate in the passing game. We do a lot of anticipatory throws rather than easy throws. This is a tough offense for quarterbacks to pick up and flourish in. We also don't have a very good wide receiver core and it is now know that Dez was beat up so bad that they had to take a bunch of plays out of the playbook.

  • http://www.pigskinhub.com/forum/index.php?forums/dallas-cowboys/ Jess Haynie

    What about the points I raised on the WR insurrection in 2008 and the Kitna & Orton issues?

    Don't get me wrong. I love Tony! Not trying to tear him down at all. But facts are facts.

  • cjprine
    ncocchiaro

    You can also argue that all of those players (besides Cassel) are better than what we had. Cassel was terrible outside of New England. McCarron is a solid backup QB in this league and Rodgers…well he's Rodgers. Yes, you can argue plenty of teams got more out of their backups, but our scheme is more intricate in the passing game. We do a lot of anticipatory throws rather than easy throws. This is a tough offense for quarterbacks to pick up and flourish in. We also don't have a very good wide receiver core and it is now know that Dez was beat up so bad that they had to take a bunch of plays out of the playbook.

    I don't know if it's a system being to detailed, remember Kellen Moore played it in Detroit! Our passing game isn't really all that complex! I honestly think out WR Corp is fine!

    I think the problem was mindset; as soon Tony Romo went down, we went to game manage mode! Our offense went from a vanilla offense to non existence! When cassell was moving the ball it was a lot more free he took chances, but as soon as he threw INT he went back into protection mode! The same could be said with kellen Moore-it was like they had to stay within certain parameters!!! When you feel handcuffed- you are going over analyze and not go with instincts!

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Report: Dallas Cowboys to Sign Free Agent Wide Receiver Brice Butler

John Williams

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5 Bye Week Adjustments Cowboys Hopefully Made

The Dallas Cowboys look to be making a move at the wide receiver position as they attempt to bring some life to the position. No they aren't trading for Cleveland Browns Wide Receiver Josh Gordon, but bringing back former Wide Receiver Brice Butler.

According to a report from Saad Yousuf from The Athletic, the Dallas Cowboys are set to resign the former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver but first have to release someone from the 53-man roster.

Saad Yousuf on Twitter

Cowboys officials are in the process of signing wide receiver Brice Butler, multiple sources tell @TheAthleticDFW. The team has to make a roster move to bring Butler onto the 53 and is trying to decide whom to release to make room for Butler before a final decision is made.

Brice Butler was signed in the offseason by the Arizona Cardinals but was released after training camp. It was a surprising move for the Cardinals. They don't have a ton of wide receiver depth aside from future Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald.

Butler's caught 73 passes on 133 targets for 1,177 yards and eight touchdowns in his five career. In 36 games with the Dallas Cowboys Brice Butler caught 43 passes on 81 targets for 794 yards and six touchdowns. In his time in Dallas, he averaged 18.5 yards per reception.

He never really got a lot of playing time with the Dallas Cowboys who had Dez Bryant, Cole Beasley and Jason Witten on the team for the duration of his time in Dallas. The Cowboys coaching staff placed a higher premium on Terrance Williams' run blocking than Butler's big play ability.

To the coaching staff's credit, Butler was never a consistent enough player to be relied upon week in and week out. In 2017, his last season in Dallas, Brice Butler was never targeted more than three times a game and he never caught more than two passes a game. Butler, however, only played 24.51% of the Dallas Cowboys' offensive snaps in 2017.

If the Dallas Cowboys do make this move it's at a curious time. Sources tell 247 Sports' Mike Fisher that the Dallas Cowboys have zero interest at the moment in Cleveland Browns Wide Receiver Josh Gordon. You'd think their lack of interest would be because they still like the wide receiver room as it is.

If they do complete the signing of Brice Butler, you'd have to expect that Deonte Thompson would be the wide receiver on the chopping block. They cut him at the end of the preseason and then brought him back during week one.

This signing is unlikely to have an impact on the Dallas Cowboys week two matchup with the New York Giants, but will probably be completed early Monday to get Butler to Frisco to begin preparing for their week three matchup.

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I don't think this is a move that makes a lot of sense for the Dallas Cowboys. They've been down that road before and haven't received the results they wanted. Brice Butler does offer some big play ability, but it was thought that is why they brought in Deonte Thompson and Tavon Austin. Is it possible the Dallas Cowboys are already down on those two players after one game? They wouldn't be bringing Butler back if they didn't have plans for him.

Good or bad, do you think bringing Brice Butler back is the right move for the Dallas Cowboys?



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Cowboys, 49ers Are WR Josh Gordon’s Preferred Teams in Trade/Free Agency

Sean Martin

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Cowboys, 49ers Are WR Josh Gordon's Preferred Teams in Trade/Free Agency

It's Sunday morning and the Cleveland Browns are expected to make a questionable decision by tomorrow, which is far from news for a Dallas Cowboys team waiting around for a crucial Sunday Night Football home game tonight. With Cleveland expected to part ways with troubled wide receiver Josh Gordon though, the Cowboys have understandably been linked to Gordon, even more so now with the talented pass catcher stating his own interest in America's Team.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

As teams discuss potentially trading for outgoing #Browns WR Josh Gordon, I'm told he's got his eye on two in particular: The #Cowboys and the #49ers.

Before looking into this any further, it's necessary to point out an all-important missing detail. Without any reports of the Cowboys own interest in Gordon, the soon-to-be free agent is simply the latest player to say he'd like to play for the Cowboys - hardly anything new for the Jones.

The Cowboys need for a player like Gordon has never been more evident though. Heavily criticized throughout the offseason for how they handled their wide receivers, the Cowboys passing game was a non-factor in the team's 16-8 week one loss.

Signing or trading for Gordon could do little to fix this, but the risk may also prove worthwhile for Dallas. The Baylor Bears product did put up 1,646 yards in 2013 with minimal talent around him, and has a career 17.3 yards per reception.

His ability to take the top off a defense is something the Cowboys are sorely missing. What they won't miss from not acquiring Gordon is the off-field trouble, taking on a player that missed all of 2015 and 2016 due to suspension.

Last season,  Gordon was reinstated for the Browns final five games.

The NFL is, at least cautiously, easing their policy on players suspended for marijuana usage. Look no further than the Cowboys own Randy Gregory to prove this, as Gregory has already become a success story for the league by being with the Cowboys this season.

Whether or not Gregory plays on Sunday night (officially listed as DOUBTFUL) after suffering a concussion in his long-awaited return last week is yet to be determined. So too is Josh Gordon's future as the latest player on his way out of Cleveland.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

From @gmfb Weekend: The #Browns plan to release Josh Gordon after he showed up late, injured his hamstring during a photo shoot, and in general completely lost their trust. https://t.co/cX2HGZPBXi

I'm of the belief that Gordon won't last long on the open market, meaning this won't be the latest Cowboys story/non-story to drag through the presses. Any fan looking to pass time between now and kickoff against the Giants could probably find me saying the same about free agent WR Dez Bryant however.

Thanks to Bryant still being a free agent along with former Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey, the team has looked smarter than expected in the long-term on moves like these.

If there's a smart way to bring on Josh Gordon, Dallas should be considering that too.

Tell us what you think about "Cowboys, 49ers Are WR Josh Gordon’s Preferred Teams in Trade/Free Agency" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



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Is Dak Prescott’s Relationship with Scott Linehan Broken?

John Williams

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Is Dak Prescott's Relationship with Scott Linehan Broken?

As the final whistle sounded last Sunday with the Carolina Panthers coming away victorious over your Dallas Cowboys, it was pretty clear there were a lot of things wrong with the offense. Many pointed to Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan and the play calling. Others to the offensive line. Others to Quarterback Dak Prescott. And others to the wide receivers.

There was plenty of blame to go around in an offensive performance that left Cowboys Nation struggling for answers. Simply put, there wasn't much good from that side of the football in their 16-8 loss. 

Well, as this week has gone on in preparation for the New York Giants Sunday night, there have been answers to questions from within the organization that make me, an outsider, feel really awkward about the relationships inside the organization. Particularly on the offensive side of the football. 

There was this from Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan responding to Troy Aikman's critique of a lack of creativity in the play calling of Linehan.

"People have their own opinions. It's hard to be super creative when you're having loss-yardage plays, to be honest with you. But I thought we had some really good stuff for the game that we couldn't use. But he's entitled to whatever opinion he has about that. It's our job to go out and show him that we have some stuff that maybe he'll be impressed with."

Scott Linehan - via Jon Machota, Sports Day DFW

Then this from Wide Receiver Allen Hurns. 

Brandon George on Twitter

Cowboys WR Allen Hurns on loss to Carolina: "Statistically people are going to say we didn't play well. If you really break down the game, we created separation. That's what you want to do as a wideout.

With Dak Prescott speaking to the media on Thursday, some interesting nuggets of information came out about the communication that takes place on game day between Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan, Quarterback Coach Kellen Moore, and Quarterback Dak Prescott.

Namely Dak described Kellen Moore as a "mediator" between the quarterback and the offensive coordinator.

“Kellen, I guess you call him the mediator at that point, when I come to the sideline. Me and him talk about what we saw and then he gets on the headset and he’s talking with Linehan. Then he’ll get back to me with what Linehan’s thinking with the plays and stuff that we’re working towards, so it’s been great.”

Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys Quarterback

Count 1310 The Ticket's Bob Sturm as one of many confused by Dak's statement about Moore as the go between.

Bob Sturm on Twitter

Thought it was really interesting to day that Dak said he talks to Kellen Moore and QB coach Kellen Moore talks to Linehan. Linehan doesn't talk directly to his QB during the game. I think that is weird.

It's becoming clear that there is a huge disconnect between the play caller and his quarterback and this disconnect is affecting everyone on the offensive side of the ball.  

Everyone, after one week, appears to be placing blame on someone else, which is really odd to me. Normally, when a unified group of players is asked a question that may lead to finger-pointing, they don't really answer the question.

Above, you can see that Hurns basically said, it wasn't the wide receivers' fault. Linehan, reacting to Troy Aikman's comments about the lack of creativity in the offense, placed the reason for the lack of creativity on the players. And Dak Prescott appears to allude to a really odd communication structure.

It has me wondering, and I'm sure I'm not the only one, if there is a trust issue with the Dallas Cowboys offensive staff and players.

Trust is a very important aspect of any group of people who work together to meet a common goal. Football is no different. As far as team sports go, the NFL requires a strong sense of trust and commitment to one another to make the intricacies of an NFL offense work.

As Preseason Begins, Does Prescott Have a "Go-To" Receiver After All?

Oct 8, 2017; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) congratulates wide receiver Cole Beasley (11) after a touchdown in the first quarter at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The coach has to trust that the player he's calling the plays for. If the play caller doesn't trust the players to execute, he's going to be much more conservative than he should be. A play caller who trusts his players will allow them to play and will be aggressive in his game planning and play calling. 

The player has to trust that the play caller is putting the player(s) in the best position possible to succeed. If the players don't trust the play caller, they aren't going to buy in to the offensive scheme. If they don't buy in to the offensive scheme then there may not be the necessary effort put in to see the scheme succeed. 

From the outside looking in, the relationship between quarterback and play caller seems fractured.  It's not a good sign for the relationship of the two men tasked with guiding this offense that there is a mediator involved in their communication. If there is an issue in the relationship that is leading to poor communication, then the Dallas Cowboys leadership structure -- Jerry Jones, Stephen Jones, and Jason Garrett -- need to make a change to better enhance offensive communication.

They aren't going to change quarterbacks at this point in the season. The move they can make that Head Coach Jason Garrett appears unwilling to make, is changing who calls the plays. If the relationship between Linehan and Prescott is such that Kellen Moore needs to act as "mediator," then the time has come to change the play caller. Whether it's Moore who takes the reigns or Garrett who returns to calling plays, the change may need to be made soon to salvage this season. 

Trust is a very valuable resource in any organization. It's the reason that Jason Garrett has remained head coach for as long as he has. The ownership trusts him. 

The lack of trust that appears to exist between Dak Prescott and Scott Linehan is something that not only hurts their relationship, but the chemistry with the entire offense. 

Football may be the greatest team sport in the world. And as such it requires a high level of chemistry . It requires everyone on offense and defense buying into their respective schemes and trusting each other to execute those schemes. 

Obviously a win against the Giants would go a long way toward healing whatever wounds exist between Prescott and Linehan. A loss however could potentially deepen a divide between the quarterback and his coordinator.



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