Video: Debating Tony Romo's new role
May, 28, 2013
By Dan Graziano | ESPN.com
The "NFL Live" crew -- specifically Mark Schlereth and Herm Edwards in this video clip -- took up the question of this "increased responsibility" quarterback Tony Romo is assuming in the Dallas Cowboys' offense in the wake of his contract extension. Herm says he's of the belief that better balance on offense (the Cowboys were No. 3 in passing yards and No. 31 in rushing yards in the NFL last season) would help Romo in all ways. Mark seems to believe Jerry Jones is misguided in giving Romo a big contract extension as a means of convincing him to do more or work harder.
"Just lumping more money on them does not motivate them to be better," Mark says.
All due respect, I think Mark's misreading the situation. I do not think anything that's been said about Romo's new role indicates that the Cowboys were dissatisfied with his effort or commitment or motivation. I think that quite the opposite is the case, and that during the discussions about a new contract, the team and Romo discussed ways in which Romo should and could be more involved in the game planning and play calling end of things. I think it's likely that Romo wants this, and that it's possibly something that should have been done sooner.
Romo has a good head for the X's and O's, and I think involving him more in the planning end of the offense can only help. Romo's only issue is throwing interceptions at critical moments in big games. It's not difficulty understanding the offense. It's not motivation or effort or commitment, and the new role isn't designed to change any of those things. It's designed to help take advantage of Romo's head for the game (which, again, is more than just his decision-making ability in big moments) as a means of helping the offense as a whole. And I think a lot of people, as often happens with the Cowboys, are reading things into this whole issue that frankly aren't there.