Commentary

Criticism won't budge Tony Romo

Cowboys QB knows he needs to limit errors, but don't expect big changes in style

Updated: October 13, 2011, 6:39 PM ET
By Todd Archer | ESPNDallas.com

IRVING, Texas -- The Dallas Cowboys have had a season's worth of ups and downs after just four games and Tony Romo believes one day -- maybe this year but definitely in the future -- it will all be worth it.

On Thursday, Romo was asked about Deion Sanders' comments following the Cowboys' collapse Detroit on Oct 2 in which the Hall of Fame cornerback said Romo will never lead Dallas to a Super Bowl.

[+] EnlargeTony Romo
Matthew Emmons/US PresswireTony Romo understands that he has to protect the ball better going forward, but he also believes there's a time to manage and a time to take risks.
For the most part Romo has tuned out the noise generated from outside the organization since taking over as the Cowboys' starting quarterback, but he was made aware of what Sanders said.

"Every once in a while you definitely hear things that come out but that's not something you search out," Romo said. "Deion's welcome to his own opinion about stuff. Deion's Deion. He is what he is. We're going to go out here and we're going to play good football. This team's going to win a Super Bowl at some point and it's going to be exciting when that time comes. And when we look back, we'll know who was on what side of the fence during the tough moments. That's exciting for us as competitors that we get a chance to get better and go out there and have a chance one day."

To get to that point, Romo understands he will have to protect the ball better. He was intercepted three times in the loss to the Lions and had two returned for touchdowns. He has had costly mistakes late in both Cowboys defeats. He had a fumble and interception in the season-opening loss to the New York Jets.

But he will not completely change who he is.

"If you're going to be a manager your team is only going to be so good," Romo said. "There are certain situations where you have to manage the game. In saying that there's also a reason how you can get up by 24 points, too. All of those things are just part of playing the position. You learn and get better from them the next time they come up."

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said there has not been a common theme to Romo's miscues in either the execution of the plays or in the decision making.

"I think Tony has a very good understanding of the importance of protecting the football and just needs to bring it to the game with him on a consistent basis," Garrett said. "I think he's done very well at different times through the season and certainly through his career and at other times hasn't been as good."

During the bye week, Garrett talked about doing things that could make life easier for Romo in terms of the game plan or how he calls plays.

"I don't think reining a player in is a good thing to do," Garrett said. "You certainly want to just constantly put all of your players and the team in the best position you can to be successful. You want to make sure that no one feels too burdened in what they're doing and that they can handle situations."

Romo will make the 66th start of his career Sunday at New England. Only twice (2006, 2010) has he had back-to-back games in which he has been intercepted more than once. Garrett likes to say the issues Romo faces are the same quarterbacks across the league face.

"Tom Brady threw four interceptions three weeks ago," Romo said. "He's pretty good too. That's part of playing the position. These things happen. Do you want [them] to? No. Going forward, are you always going to get better from it? Yeah. Does it mean it'll never happen again for the next 5-10 years? No. It's hard playing quarterback in the National Football League but you have to learn from it and don't make that same mistake. That's what the position is about. And then going out and being successful year in and year out and putting your team in position to be in the Super Bowl."

Brady has done that in New England for the last 10 years. Romo believes it will happen for him with th Cowboys one day.

Todd Archer covers the Cowboys for ESPNDallas.com.

Todd Archer

ESPN Dallas Cowboys reporter

SPONSORED HEADLINES

ALSO SEE