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Gene Wang
Fantasy Guru

Gene Wang

A sports staff writer at The Washington Post

Dallas Done

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Dallas Cowboys fans may be rejoicing because quarterback Tony Romo is scheduled to start Sunday night's game against Washington, but they shouldn't get their hopes up. Remember, the Cowboys lost as many games with Romo starting as they did when he was out for three games with a broken pinkie.

And it's not as if the underachieving Cowboys have shown they can break out of a malaise. Look at last season, when Dallas started strong, slumped in December and was out of the playoffs after its first game. What makes anyone think they can reverse that trend this year?

Certainly it's not Coach Wade Phillips, who doesn't exactly inspire confidence. He's 0-4 in the playoffs for a reason. Dallas has lacked discipline and accountability this season, and even played at times with a sense of entitlement. That's all on the coach folks.

Then there's Romo, who hasn't exactly played his best when it matters most. Romo is a fantastic regular season quarterback, but that doesn't matter much in Dallas. The most revered Cowboys quarterbacks are Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman because they brought the team five Super Bowl titles. Their regular season statistics pale in comparison to their contemporaries, but in the postseason and big games, they were among the best of all-time.

Romo has not earned the right to be mentioned with those players yet. He has to win a playoff game first, and that's not going to happen this season because Dallas won't be playing in January.

In order to make the playoffs, Dallas probably needs to win at least five of its final seven games. The Cowboys' schedule the second half of the season includes road games against Washington, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia and home games against the New York Giants and Baltimore. San Francisco and Seattle are the only teams with losing records on Dallas's remaining schedule.

Even if we assume Dallas beats the 49ers and Seahawks -- and that's a significant presumption considering the Cowboys lost to lowly St. Louis by 20 points -- tell me where you see three other wins.

Unless Romo has a finishing stretch reminiscent of Staubach's in 1971, when Captain Comeback went 10-0 and won the Super Bowl after being named the starter by then-coach Tom Landry halfway through the season, this year's version of the Dallas Cowboys will be one of the most prolific disappointments in recent NFL memory.

By Gene Wang  |  November 14, 2008; 12:53 PM ET  | Category:  NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Gene Wang is a loser!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: me | November 14, 2008 4:15 PM

This Giants fan will be rooting for the 'Skins on Sunday. Nothing as satisfying as watching "America's Team" underachieve for the ninth year in a row........

Posted by: Larry Bachmann | November 14, 2008 4:24 PM

Wow - glad you don’t have to research any facts prior to arriving at your conclusions.
Tony has broken all of Aikman, D.White and Staubach single season Touch Down and passing yard records in just his 2nd season, but you say he can't even be mentioned in the same conversation? True he has not brought home the Lombardi Trophy yet or won a playoff game but his time will come. What has Jason Campbell done?
I agree with you though in one thing, Philips is not the solution but nor was Parcells. Just like Gibbs return to the Redskins yielded similar results.
Just keep throwing stones from your glass house and watch the Cowboys beat your overrated redskins on Sunday Night!
PS: thank all of the Redskins fans for selling us all of their Tickets – we’ll all be there Sunday!

Posted by: Dallas 28 Redskins 24 | November 14, 2008 5:48 PM

Blah, Blah, Blah - heard it all before. You are very original and have incredible insight. Glad you don’t have to research any facts prior to arriving at your conclusions.
Tony has broken all of Aikman, D.White and Staubach single season Touch Down and passing yard records in just his 2nd season, but you say he can't even be mentioned in the same conversation? True he has not brought home the Lombardi Trophy yet or even won a playoff game but his time will come. What has Jason Campbell done?
I agree with you though in one thing, Philips is not the solution but nor was Parcells. Just like Gibbs return to the Redskins yielded similar results.
Just keep throwing stones from your glass house and watch the Cowboys beat your overrated redskins on Sunday Night!

Posted by: Dallas 28 Redskins 24 | November 14, 2008 5:52 PM

Only one person is responsible for the disaster that is the Cowboys: Jerry Jones. His penchant for micromanagement, combined with his preference for marketing over performance, has produced an incredibly profitable franchise but a shamefully lazy, arrogant team. Integrity and character matter in football as in few other sports. Tex Schramm and Tom Landry had both, Jones has neither.

Posted by: Remember Tex | November 14, 2008 8:38 PM

Even if they do come back and make the playoffs they'll just lose in the first round anyway. Romo is a choker.

Posted by: Who Cares | November 14, 2008 11:04 PM

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