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Rabid Reaction: Tony Romo-coaster can't protect win baby

10/4/2011

Rabid Reaction: Our series of knee-jerk-styled, emotional overreactions from Ben Rogers of 103.3 FM ESPN's Ben and Skin Show. He's known to get way too excited over even the slightest of developments with the teams he grew up with in the DFW. Proceed with caution ...

Romocoaster riders take notice -- when the Cowboys' quarterback bandwagon naturally comes to a complete halt during the coming bye week, it could represent "last call" for those looking to safely jump off once and for all. Should you choose to stay on board, you will do so at your own risk. Either way, all indications are that it will continue to be a bumpy ride.

It all comes down to a question of trust. Think of a potential win as a fragile, vulnerable infant. It must be nurtured, cherished and cradled in a warm, safe blanket. Right now, Tony Romo doesn’t appear to consistently grasp the high level of attention that the win baby requires.

Instead of gently watching over the win baby in the safest possible environment, Romo is busy stunt-jumping over 17 school buses while yelling out to the tiny, defenseless win baby, “Hold on!”

Romo’s magical gun-slinging ways remain brilliant. They’re capable of staking his team to big leads against solid opponents. But once a win is in reach, he must adapt to the game from a situational standpoint and transition into a more conservative approach. It’s beginning to look as if he has just one gear, and it doesn’t appear to be anything less than full throttle.

Anyone who takes the stance that Romo is not a good quarterback is wrong. The same goes for those who say that the Cowboys can’t win with him at QB. Far lesser quarterbacks have Super Bowl jewelry. But at 31 years old, it’s beginning to look like Romo is what he is: a talented yet reckless gunslinger capable of both throwing his team into and right out of games at any given time.

How great would it be to let Romo build up a nice lead only to see Jason Garrett walk out to the huddle, signal to a closer warming on the sideline and take the ball away for a relief quarterback? The crowd goes wild. Romo tips his helmet to them and shuts it down for the day as the closer QB comes in to shut it down with good, safe win-preserving decisions.

It’s laughable. Just like Romo’s ridiculous play in the second half Sunday. But in all seriousness, had Jon Kitna come in for Romo -- so he could protect his injured ribs -- once the score was 27-3, the Cowboys would have won that game. Mind-boggling.

When has a quarterback ever been able to look both so extraordinary and so horrendous in the same game? It’s uncanny how often Romo will do that. Unfortunately for him, teams need to be able to trust the player who makes the most decisions for them with the ball. Right now, Romo is proving to be untrustworthy. Instead of throwing the ball away when nothing is there, he seems intent on zinging it into tight coverage and letting the cards fall where they may.

That’s too unstable of an environment for a sweet, little win baby.

The Ben and Skin Show airs weekdays from 9 a.m.-noon on 103.3 FM, ESPN in Dallas-Fort Worth. Follow Ben on Twitter: @BenRogers