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Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Sacks up, but picks down for Tony Romo

By Todd Archer

IRVING, Texas -- Commandment No. 7 on Bill Parcells’ list for quarterbacks is this: Throwing the ball away is a good play – sacks, interceptions and fumbles are bad plays. Protect against those.

I wonder just how bad of a play a sack is. Yes, it hurts the ability to keep drives alive and score points and the sack/fumble Saturday vs. Tampa Bay was picked up for a touchdown. But for the most part a sack sure beats an interception.

Tony Romo has been sacked 30 times this year and will face the NFL’s sack leader on Saturday in Philadelphia’s Jason Babin, who has 18 through 14 games.

Since the three-interception game against Detroit on Oct. 2, when Romo promised he would improve and not make the same mistakes, he has been sacked 23 times and been intercepted only four times. In the first four games he was sacked seven times and intercepted five times. During that time he has 22 touchdown passes.

Is there a correlation?

It looks like Romo has been more willing to accept a sack rather than trying to stick a tight throw into coverage while under pressure.

It’s a little like Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers. He would rather take a sack than risk a throw. In Rodgers’ first four seasons as the Packers starter he has been sacked 34, 50, 31 and 36 times. This year Rodgers has a stupendous 40 touchdown passes and only six interceptions.