Will Tony Romo Become a Better Leader? How to Fix the Dallas Cowboys

Ryan MichaelSenior Writer IIIJanuary 23, 2009

Am I the only one tired of hearing about the Dallas Cowboys soap opera? It's time for "America's Team" to get back to basics and put the emphasis back on football.

All season long we've heard tales of the tension present within the Cowboys locker room. When you combine that with the team's failure to reach expectations, you get a media circus that takes the focus off of where it should have been in the first place.


Now I personally was not the biggest critic of the Dallas Cowboys in 2008. Yes, they failed to meet the expectations everyone had for them, but is that really their fault? No doubt, they have a team stacked with superstars. This led many to believe that they might become the NFC's Super Bowl front-runners.

They didn't.

But was that the fault of the Cowboys organization, their players, the expectations themselves, or simply the fault of an NFC division that has managed to grow in strength and quantity? This NFC conference is not the NFC of recent years past.

Now we are beginning to hear how Tony Romo desires to become a better leader next season.

Now for those who are saying "it's about time," take this into consideration. Leadership is not something you pull out of your helmet. Some players are natural born leaders, like Peyton Manning or Ray Lewis. For other players, it might take some time.

Romo was not put into an easy situation when he became the Cowboys' starting quarterback in 2006. He played on a team that is always high with expectations, and he played alongside a future Hall of Fame receiver.

Who was Tony Romo then?

Nobody. He had to earn his stripes, but he quickly emerged as one of the more productive quarterbacks in the National Football League.

Keep in mind that when you're a main figure smack-dab in the middle of bizarro land, things can get difficult awfully quick.

Now, I'm no Tony Romo apologist. He's had some bad games here and there, and unfortunately for him, many of them have come when it's counted the most. Even so, that doesn't make him a "choke artist" in my opinion.

Had the Cowboys not lost on a freak accident in 2006, nobody would have dreamed of calling Romo a choke artist had that not happened. I feel that for him to have so quickly earned that false label after one play was negligent of any football fan or analyst who called him such.

True, he has continued to struggle down the stretch, but I feel the good outweighs the bad. Cowboys fans and the media alike need to get off of Romo's back because they've obviously forgotten how awful the Cowboys were at the beginning of the decade.

As for Romo, maybe he should tell Terrell Owens to shut his mouth and go catch passes like a good boy. T.O. is a great player, but leadership is a quality he does not appear to have. Romo at least has an opportunity to take a step in that direction.

Come to think of it, everyone with a star on his helmet does.

So why don't we just sit back, appreciate the Cowboys' improvement from prior losing seasons, and see where the team can go without the media circus and fabricated expectations weighing them down.