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Tony Romo: The Truth About December

The narrative on Tony Romo was set a while back. “He is the quarterback that will always choke with the game on the line.”  While yes there was the botched the snap in Seattle but a moment like that doesn’t define a career. While there have been instances where he has made a decision to cost the team a game, he has just as many good decisions. Tony Romo has owned the month of November as many Cowboys fans have referred to it as Rovember for his play.

A player doesn’t forget how to play just because your turn the calendar to the next month. Romo is gunslinger who seems to get out of the most difficult situations with his legs and athleticism.  A play that comes to mind to show off his athleticism was against the St. Louis Rams. The ball was snapped over his head about 25 yards and ran the ball back for a four yard gain and the first down.

Romo has the led the Cowboys in the month of November with a 105.5 quarterback rating. The team is 24-5 for the month with him under center. There is no denying what Romo has meant to this team during the month. Romo has had his struggles in the early part of his career in the month of December. From 2006-2008 he has put up pedestrian numbers as the starting quarterback of America’s team.

In his 26 career December games, Romo has led the Cowboys to a 11-15 record during that span. As stated earlier his numbers are somewhat pedestrian from 06-08. The Cowboys were 5-8 during December games. Romo had a quarterback rating of 70.5 with 14 touchdowns and 19 interceptions. It isn’t hard to see why they had a losing record during those three seasons. His last game during the three year span in question Romo had no touchdown, one interception and a rating of 55.8 during a 44-6 loss to end the season.

2009 seemed to be a changing point for Romo and the Cowboys as he would turn around his play. After the Cowboys started the month with back to back losses, they won the next three games even shutting out divisional opponents on the final two games. Romo had a rating of 104, nine touchdowns and two interceptions.  In 2010 he wouldn’t play due to a fractured collarbone, the same injury that Aaron Rodgers is currently dealing with.

In 2011 and 2012 has even stepped up his game even more. He has posted the rating of 103, 22 touchdowns and five interceptions. While the Cowboys were 4-6 during that time, you can’t place the blame at the feet of Romo. Tony Romo doesn’t play defense, and there were also games lost due to clock management.  When it comes to Romo in December, he is one of the best. His rating is 106.3 since 2009 and only Aaron Rodgers has a better rating. He also has 31 touchdowns to seven interceptions in that time.

The W-L record is not a quarterback’s record, it belongs to the TEAM. The other stat that is horrendous is Romo’s record in “elimination” games. I though Phil Simms said it best during the Thanksgiving Day game telecast.

“Elimination games? What are those?! Let’s make up a new stat so you can make it look worse!”

So it is time for NFL fans to start praising Tony for the great quarterback that he is and start laying some blame on the team. The team gets wins and losses put in the NFL standings and not NFL quarterbacks.

What do you think?

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Written by Patrick Conn

Patrick Conn is the founder and creator of Valley Ranch Outsiders. His work has been seen on SI.com, FanSided, Yahoo and Blue Star Times. He is an avid Cowboys fan and NFL Draft analyst. He currently hosts a podcast about the Dallas Cowboys.

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