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Tony Romo’s Impact Is Even Greater Than You Think

Yesterday, I detailed why I felt that the NFL’s trend of team rushing yard leaders having mediocre finishes could be debunked by this year’s Dallas Cowboys. The main reason I felt this was true, was that those same yards must be converted to touchdowns to have a quantifiable impact on the game, in most cases. I also discussed how the Cowboys offense is very different from those who led the league in rushing before them. Teams like the Denver Broncos in 2011 and the New York Jets in 2009; they had no where near the offensively that this Cowboys team has when healthy. But this argument centers around just one man:

Kevin Brady



Cowboys Blog - Cowboys CTK: #9 Belongs To Tony Romo

Yesterday, I detailed why I felt that the NFL's trend of team rushing yard leaders having mediocre finishes could be debunked by this year's Dallas Cowboys.


The main reason I felt this was true, was that those same yards must be converted to touchdowns to have a quantifiable impact on the game, in most cases.

I also discussed how the Cowboys offense is very different from those who led the league in rushing before them. Teams like the Denver Broncos in 2011 and the New York Jets in 2009; they had no where near the offensively that this Cowboys team has when healthy.

But this argument centers around just one man: the quarterback, Tony Romo.

Claiming "well, Romo will be back" feels lazy, doesn't it?

When an Eagles fan tells me the Cowboys won't return to their 2014 success, for whatever reason, I don't want to just respond with "Romo is back, and his impact will make all the difference."

It's lazy and feels just as much like a cop out as the Eagles fan blindly hating Romo.

There are a ton of reasons why a team wins or loses a particular game, or continue to win or lose throughout a season. The 2015 Dallas Cowboys had many more problems than Tony Romo being injured. We all recognize that. The thing is, those problems weren't on full display for us to point to until he was out.

But how many struggles in 2015 were due to Tony Romo's absence? And how much of 2016's potential success will be because of Tony Romo's presence?

Jonathon Bales, the co-founder of Fantasy Labs, shared an interesting graphic on Twitter yesterday, detailing just how important Tony Romo is to the Dallas Cowboys:

Jonathan Bales on Twitter

Per @RotoViz, the Cowboys' splits w/ and w/o Romo the past four years are nuts.

Tony Romo's impact on the Cowboys seems like a folktale sometimes, so seeing it spelled out with real numbers was truly jarring. Every aspect of the game is worse when Tony Romo doesn't play, besides total rushing yards. However - as I pointed out yesterday - fewer yards and more touchdowns may actually be ideal.

Some of these numbers were sort of expected before actually seeing them.Cowboys Headlines - Tony Romo Career Start Percentage Compared To Other NFL QBs 2

For example, since 2012, the Cowboys have averaged almost 3 touchdown passes per game when Tony Romo plays, compared to just under 1 when Tony Romo doesn't play.

The Dallas Cowboys also average almost 50 more passing yards when Tony Romo plays versus when he doesn't. Others I would've thought were true, but they were still incredible to see.

Like the Cowboys average 10.2 less points per game when Tony Romo doesn't play. When Romo is out, the team is outscored by an average of 8.14 points per game. That means that our quarterback alone accounts for two possessions worth of scoring per game!


Stop and think about how utterly ridiculous that is, right now.

I'm not sure if I should be worshiping the ground Tony Romo walks on or cursing the names of every other quarterback who has taken a snap for the Cowboys since 2012.Cowboys Draft - Beyond The Clock: Cowboys Undrafted Wonder, Tony Romo

Probably a little bit of both...

As far as the importance of rushing touchdowns to a team's success? Yeah, Tony Romo's presence increases those too.

These numbers even go as far as to indicate that the Cowboys defense gives up slightly more points per game when Tony Romo isn't playing.

I point all of this out to say that while the "Tony Romo will be back and he'll fix everything!" argument is certainly flawed, and a bit simplistic at times, there are numbers that back up the ridiculousness of his impact on this entire team.

Inside The Star's own Staff Writer, RJ Ochoa even pointed out that Tony Romo has "truly" only lost two games while starting at quarterback since December 15th, 2013. And no one is more well-versed in the Romo department than RJ, so his birthday tribute to our captain is a must read.


Tony Romo is a special, special player. His impact cannot and should not be understated. These numbers just prove that the 2016 Cowboys may be set for a quick rise to NFC supremacy with Romo back in the lineup.

Die-hard Cowboys fan from the Northeast, so you know I am here to defend the 'boys whenever necessary. Began writing for a WordPress Cowboys Blog, and am currently a college student. Lets get going.

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Player News

Will Cowboys WR Noah Brown Do Enough to Make the Roster?

Sean Martin



Will Cowboys WR Noah Brown Do Enough to Make Cowboys Roster? 2
(Tom Fox/The Dallas Morning News)

The Dallas Cowboys aren't short on numbers at wide receiver on their current 90-man roster. Looking to replace Dez Bryant and reshape their offense, the Cowboys will have to find the right group of pass catchers for Dak Prescott at their upcoming training camp.

This group includes Terrance Williams, Cole Beasley, Allen Hurns, Lance Lenoir, Deonte Thompson, Cedrick Wilson, Michael Gallup, KD Cannon, Mekale McCay, and Marchie Murdock.

The odd men out from this group will likely be the ones that can't sustain a consistent level of play, doing so across multiple units if needed. All ten receivers will have their flashes, but with only four being true locks to make the team, new Cowboys Wide Receivers Coach Sanjay Lal will be in on some tough decisions right away.

One such decision may be moving on from last year's seventh round pick Noah Brown out of Ohio State. Vouched for by former Buckeyes teammate Ezekiel Elliott thanks to his blocking ability on the outside, it may now be this strength in the run game and deficiency as a pass catcher that spells the end of Brown's run in Dallas.

Normally, a seventh round pick being on the roster bubble wouldn't be this noteworthy, but Brown clearly showed the potential to outplay this draft status as a rookie. Appearing in 13 games, Brown is a true X receiver, although not the dominant one the Cowboys are searching for.

What Happens if WR Allen Hurns Doesn't Pan Out?

Dallas Cowboys WR Deonte Thompson, Cedrick Wilson, Allen Hurns (AP Photo/Ron Jenkins)

Moving away from fielding a true number one receiver, the Cowboys did sign Allen Hurns to play this spot while prepared to spread the ball around to Williams, Beasley, and Gallup after that.

This leaves Thompson, Wilson, Cannon, Lenoir, McCay, Murdock, and Brown to prove their worth in other ways to make the roster. I've written plenty about the potential rookie Cedrick Wilson has, so I'll be expecting a strong showing from him to earn a role in the Cowboys offense.

Wilson's skill set could push a depth signing like Deonte Thompson off the team, although his ability to back up Cole Beasley/Tavon Austin on special teams is important. The same can be said about Lance Lenoir, who like Brown has the advantage over first year players given his trials through training camp and the preseason a year ago.

Long shots to make the team, Cannon, McCay, and Murdock fall just below this group -- and somewhere in the middle is Noah Brown.

Increasing his role on special teams as the season went on last year, Brown had fans throughout a coaching staff that is now drastically changed for 2018. From their shift to more speed on offense, to drafting of both Gallup and Wilson, calling Brown a fringe player on the Cowboys roster really sets up the fiery competition to come at wide receiver.

Will Cowboys WR Noah Brown Do Enough to Make Cowboys Roster?

Dallas Cowboys WR Noah Brown (Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports)

Should the Cowboys find a spot for Brown, one can only hope it means this new coaching staff has a clear plan for him to contribute on both offense and special teams outside of being a run blocker. A potential niche for Brown is his red zone ability, not afraid to put his body on the line for jump balls and fight through contact in his routes.

It won't be long until we sort out if this is enough to make the Cowboys as a wide receiver ahead of Quarterback Dak Prescott's third season.

Tell us what you think about "Will Cowboys WR Noah Brown Do Enough to Make the Roster?" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

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Player News

Cowboys CB Marquez White Facing Assault Charges

Jess Haynie



Marquez White

Player news this time of year is often not the good kind, and such is true of a new development with Dallas Cowboys Cornerback Marquez White. The second-year CB is facing aggravated assault charges for an incident last October.

According to the report, White displayed a legally owned firearm during a "road rage" incident.

Marquez,  a sixth-round pick of the Cowboys last season, has made his side of the story public. The following account was released by White to The Dothan Eagle, his hometown newspaper:

Cowboys CB Marquez White Facing Assault Charges

Cowboys CB Marquez White Facing Assault Charges 1

Naturally, we're in a wait-and-see situation as to how this case unfolds and impacts White's availability to the Cowboys in 2018. He is one of several players hoping to catch on at the bottom of the CB depth chart, having spent his rookie season on the practice squad.

This latest legal issue is especially unwelcome news after other Cowboys' recent problems. The team has seen David Irving get suspended four games for illegal substances and Terrance Williams' get arrested for public intoxication in the last two months.

Last year, Linebacker Damien Wilson was charged for aggravated assault in a somewhat similar situation to that of Marquez White. Those charges were eventually dropped.

What happens in White's case remains to be seen.

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Deadline for DeMarcus Lawrence Contract Extension Nearing

Brian Martin



Cowboys Blog - Cowboys Crossroads: Is This a Short-Term or Long-Term Team? 2

NFL teams have until July 16 to work out a long-term extension with any players currently under the franchise tag, which means the Dallas Cowboys have about a week to work something out with Defensive End DeMarcus Lawrence. If deals are not signed and approved by the league by 4 P.M. ET July 16, the sides cannot agree to new contracts until after the 2018 season ends.

Along with the Lawrence, Pittsburgh Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell, Detroit Lions DE Ziggy Ansah, and Los Angeles Rams S Lamarcus Joyner have franchise tags slapped on them. All of them would love the long-term security a contract extension would provide, but they are all going to have to wait and see what the upcoming week has in store for them.

So, what will the Dallas Cowboys decide to do with DeMarcus Lawrence? Can they come to terms on a long-term contract extension before the deadline on July 16?

Luckily for Lawrence, the Dallas Cowboys seem open about hearing what he believes his market value is. That doesn't mean he will get his asking price, but the talks have to begin somewhere.

DeMarcus Lawrence

Dallas Cowboys DE DeMarcus Lawrence

Rumors are already circulating that Lawrence is seeking a five-year extension and wants to make more money than Danielle Hunter, who the Vikings just signed to a five-year $72 million contract. That's probably more money than the Cowboys have in mind at this time. They may prefer to wait and see if he can replicate what he accomplished in 2017.

Last season DeMarcus Lawrence turned into the "War Daddy" Owner Jerry Jones has been seeking for the defense. He accumulated a career-high 14.5 quarterback sacks and finally played an entire 16 game season. But, even that may not be worth the money he is rumored to be seeking right now.

Hunter's five-your $72 million contract extension is the going price right now for someone of Lawrence's caliber, but there are other players in line for a big payday as well. Aaron Donald, Khalil Mack, and Jadeveon Clowney are all in the same boat as Lawrence. What kind of extensions they receive could change the going rate, which could cause some hesitance on the Cowboys part.

Fortunately, I kind of doubt DeMarcus Lawrence is going to complain much if he has to play the 2018 season under the franchise tag. He will make a little over $17 million for one year and has a chance to cash in big time if he can replicate what he did a season ago.

Would you sign DeMarcus Lawrence to an extension before the July 16 deadline?

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