Apart from the question of whether Cowboys coach Jason Garrett threw quarterback Tony Romo under the bus when pointing out that Romo called a game-changing audible from run to pass, the Cowboys made their bed in the offseason when they gave Romo a gigantic contract and told him, essentially, “Now go be like Peyton Manning.”
On Sunday, with the Cowboys nursing a lead and the coaches calling for a run, Romo did something Peyton Manning would do. Romo saw an opportunity to throw the ball against a defense that was expected a run, and he decided to take it.
When owner Jerry Jones said he wants Romo to be like Peyton Manning, this is what Jerry asked for. A guy who would take charge of any and every situation, behaving like a coach on the field.
And that’s what makes Garrett’s decision to publicly call Romo out even more glaring. Would Broncos coach John Fox ever call out Peyton Manning for changing the play called by the coaching staff?
While the Cowboys ideally envisioned Peyton Manning-type results, the Peyton Manning-style sausage gets made with the quarterback deciding how to stuff the grinder and which direction to turn the crank. That’s what the Cowboys have empowered Romo to do. Though others outside the organization may criticize him for screwing up, the Cowboys have no basis for complaining about how Romo exercised the authority that the team has so zealously vested in him.
Charean Williams of the Forth Worth Star-Telegram joined PFT Live for more on the mess in Dallas. We’d be very happy if you’d give it a listen. Our sponsors would, too.