Dallas stood at this exact spot in 2011. The team was 3-4 after losing 34-7 to the Philadelphia Eagles, and they were unsure of where their season was headed.
There was talk of the team finally moving on from Romo, as he had cost the Cowboys at least two victories. In the 2011 season opener against the New York Jets, Romo threw a critical interception in the fourth quarter that ended up sealing the Jets' victory.
In Week 4 versus the Lions, Romo threw three picks, two of which were returned for touchdowns, leading to a Lions win.
But despite Romo’s mistakes and the Cowboys' inconsistency, after their drubbing by way of the Eagles, Dallas reeled off four straight victories. Romo stabilized and the Cowboys' season seemed to be back on track.
Well, things are a little different this season. Yes, the Cowboys are 3-4, just as they were in 2011. Yes, Dallas has a chance to hop on another winning streak to firmly place their season back on track toward the playoffs, just as they did last season.
There is something a little different about 2012. The Cowboys take off for Atlanta to play the 7-0 Falcons on Sunday night and then travel to Philadelphia for an afternoon game against the Eagles.
After seeing that deposit of games, how much faith will fans have in believing that Dallas can actually turn it around?
Going back to Romo, after seven games in 2011, he had thrown seven interceptions and 11 touchdowns. This year, the story is different, as Romo has 13 picks and just nine touchdowns. He has been erratic, flat, inconsistent, bad, off-target and any other dreadful word/phrase that one can think of.
True, it is not all Romo’s fault. His receivers have let him down, and so has the running game, at times. He is not deserving of all the blame. Romo’s time in Dallas has been fruitful, stat-wise, but unforgiving when it comes to making any noise in the playoffs.
But with all of that negative information staring us in the face regarding Romo’s tenure in Dallas for a total of 14 games combined from 2011 and 2012, he still deserves another shot in 2013.
The Cowboys went out and signed quarterback Kyle Orton as a security blanket just in case Romo were to suffer an injury. All too often, they have relied on older quarterbacks to step in if they were in a bind.
Orton brings a new level of security to Dallas. Yet as good as Orton can be, he is not the answer in Dallas. Fans may be clamoring for a new quarterback in Big D, but I seriously doubt they are willing to hand the keys to a quarterback with a career record of 35 wins and 34 losses.
Next, Dallas can either look toward a veteran free agent, trading for a veteran quarterback or drafting a player who will be a long shot as a starter in the NFL.
Unless Dallas completely tanks their season, they have no real shot of drafting a franchise quarterback.
The Cowboys are just about stuck with Romo, for better and for worse. He may drive fans and pundits crazy on Sunday afternoons, but his presence in Dallas is locked in for at least another season.
Plus, when one looks at his stats and game tape, he isn’t the worst quarterback in the NFL.
Besides, there were contract negotiations regarding Romo’s stay in Dallas this offseason. I have no doubt that team owner Jerry Jones will continue those talks once the season is over.
I’m buying Romo as the starter in Dallas for 2013.