Dallas Cowboys: Why Troy Aikman and Jason Garrett Are Wrong About Tony Romo

Jesse ReedCorrespondent IMarch 24, 2012

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - JANUARY 01:   Tony Romo #9 of the Dallas Cowboys walks back to the bench against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on January 1, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

Tony Romo is not a better quarterback than Troy Aikman.

Aikman—Cowboys legend and Hall of Fame quarterback—recently made headlines when he stated the following about Tony Romo to the Brownsville Herald:

I think Tony already is a better quarterback than I was. I know how quarterbacks are judged but as far as his play-making ability and the things that he is capable of doing, he is a far more athletic quarterback, capable of making more plays than I ever was able to. He has a good team around him and hopefully, and I believe this will happen, I believe that he will win a Super Bowl before he is done playing.

While Aikman is correct about Romo's athleticism and ability to make big plays, he is wrong about those attributes being the qualities that make a quarterback great.

A day later, Romo's head coach Jason Garrett agreed with Aikman, saying:

Troy understands the challenges of playing in the National Football League more than anybody else does, and I think his perspective on what Tony has done throughout his career is pretty dead on. He has a real appreciation for Tony as a player, as a person, as a leader in our locker room and on our football team, and I think those comments stem from that.

There is no doubt that Romo has elite physical abilities.

He can make all the throws on the field, he can baffle opposing pass-rushers with his quick feet, and he can scramble for yardage with the best of them.

Heck, his career quarterback rating of 96.9 is the second-best all time in the NFL. Romo has thrown twice as many touchdowns as interceptions during the course of his career, and is supremely talented.

Still, there is no way I can honestly say that Romo is better than Aikman.

You see, Aikman was a clutch performer, whereas Romo tends to shrink under the bright lights.

In six seasons as the starting quarterback for the Cowboys, Romo has only won a single playoff game. Aikman, on the other hand, won 11 postseason games, including three Super Bowl victories. 

It's not as if Aikman was surrounded by that much more talent than Romo, either. Year in and year out, Romo's Cowboys are at the top of the league in terms of overall talent.

Romo, despite his God-given talent, seems to always find ways to lose. Aikman, on the other hand, found ways to win.

Winning is the first and last measure of greatness in NFL quarterbacks. Talent alone accomplishes little. 

Romo, to this point in his career, has not proven to be a winner. 

Until he starts winning, I will never agree with anyone who says Romo is better than Aikman.