Tony Romo – A Legend In The Making?
The consistent high performance of the Dallas Cowboys, over a span of more than 30 years, has made the team a fan favorite not only in the state of Texas and the United States but internationally, as well. The Dallas Cowboys of the NFL, “America’s Team”, have also tasted success off the field and are considered one of the most valuable sports teams in North America. It is the play on the field, and the individuals who have contributed to that play, that is at the heart of the Cowboys great success.
Numerous players have donned the single star, blue and white jerseys of the Dallas Cowboys, taken to the field at Texas Stadium, and left their mark on the team, the fans, the NFL, the state, the country and far beyond. Indeed, the NFL Dallas Cowboys are an exceptional team with a formidable past and countless all-stars such as Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Roger Staubach, to name just a few. The skill and achievements of these all-stars have created legends and Dallas Cowboys history. Thanks to these players and countless others over the years, the Dallas Cowboys are one of the most successful teams in the history of the NFL and hold numerous league records. They hold the league record for most consecutive winning seasons – 20 in all – from 1966 to 1985, as well as the record for most seasons with at least 10 wins (24). As well, they have been Super Bowl Champions five times a record they share with the San Francisco 49ers and Pittsburgh Steelers.The list of team records which are part of the Dallas Cowboys history is numerous.
The Dallas Cowboys are looking to return to their glory days and it is hoped that the leadership of the current Dallas Cowboys quarterback, Tony Romo, will take them there. Romo attended college at Eastern Illinois Universtiy in Charleston where he had a stellar career. In 2002 he was the first player in Eastern Illinois and Ohio Valley Conference to win the Walter Payton Award, given annually to the nation’s top player at the NCAA Division I-AA level. He finished his career holding school and conference records and along with the Walter Payton Award, Romo earned consensus All-America honors. He was also selected All-Ohio Valley Conference and was named OVC Player of the Year for the three straight years.
Despite intriguing some scouts, Tony Romo went undrafted during the 2003 NFL draft and was signed by the Dallas Cowboys as an undrafted rookie free agent. Romo entered the 2003 training camp, third on the Cowboys’ depth chart. In 2004, the Cowboys signed veteran quarterback Vinny Testaverde and Romo faced being cut until another quarterback was released following allegations of substance abuse. Testaverde’s tenure in Dallas would end in 2005, at which time the Cowboys signed their 8th starting Dallas Cowboys quarterback since 2000, veteran quarterback Drew Bledsoe.
Romo had strong showings in the 2005 and 2006 pre-seasons and in October of 2006 he took over the starting Dallas Cowboys quarterback role at the beginning of the second half on Monday Night Football. Two days following that game it was announced by Cowboys head coach, Bill Parcells, that Romo would be the starting quarterback for the next game on October 29 on NBC Sunday Night Football. Romo led the Cowboys to victory in his first game as a starter, 35-14 and was named Sunday Night Football’s “Rock Star of the Game.” Wins at Texas Stadium against the Indianapolis Colts, the NFL’s last unbeaten team, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, on Thanksgiving Day, followed. In the Thanksgiving Day game Romo went 22-29 with 306 yards and five touchdown passes without an interception, becoming the highest rated quarterback in the league and tying a franchise record for touchdown passes in a game set by others, most recently Troy Aikman. For his efforts, Romo was named FOX’s Thanksgiving Day MVP. He finished out the regular season by helping the Cowboys clinch a playoff berth, the second since Bill Parcells became the coach in 2003. On December 19, 2006, it was announced that in just his first year as a starter, Romo would be attending the 2007 Pro Bowl.
Tony Romo’s appearance in the the first round of the 2006 playoffs didn’t end as he would have liked as he botched a hold on a 19-yard field goal attempt with approximately a minute left in the game and his team trailing the Seattle Seahawks 21-20. After fumbling the snap, Romo picked up the ball and ran to the end zone but was tackled two yards short of the goal line and one yard short of a first down. The Cowboys gave the ball over on downs to Seattle. A last second attempt by Romo at a Hail Mary pass fell short and the Cowboys seaon was done.
Although Tony Romo ended the season crushed and feeling responsible for the Cowboys first round exit in the play-offs he demonstrated that he is starting quarterback material and is capable of leading his team to greatness. The NFL Dallas Cowboys have been an exceptional team through the years thanks to their many outstanding all-stars. Only time will tell if Tony Romo will become a legend and an all-star of Dallas Cowboys history.