Cowboys Romo: A Milestone Season In Review

IRVING - “But I feel personally like I’ve just started to come into the player that I wanted to be six, seven years ago,' Tony Romo said back at training camp, promising, 'you’ll see the best version of me that I’ve had throughout my career.' Promise fulfilled. Check out Tony Romo's Cowboys milestones for 2014:



Romo in Review

His season season ended with a loss, which is the way this thing works for 31 of the 32 teams. But Tony Romo's season was also brilliant, in virtually every possible way, justifying the Joneses' financial belief in him as "the big ticket'' and justifying Romo's own confidence in his predicted 2014 ability to be the "best version of myself.''

It ended in the playoffs in Green Bay, where in the wake of 26-21, Romo said, "Just to lose in general is disappointing. I have played long enough to understand that you don't have these kinds of teams on your side to play in these games consistently. When you have that opportunity you want to take advantage. It just doesn't feel very good right now because you feel like you let one slip away and that you had an opportunity with a good ballclub that had a chance to win this thing.

"That is going to eat at you for a while."

But if one loss has staying power, so should 13 wins, a total that includes a gutsy comeback victory over the Lions in the first round of the playoffs. Those wins and this season also include a bevy of milestones that belie the ridiculous Romo memes that paint him as other than something shy of Pro Bowl-worthy (he's been voted in again this year) and now, even MVP-worthy. (We've predicted for a month that voters will see him at least deserving of runner-up status to Aaron Rodgers.)

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Those milestones:

*Led the NFL in QB rating, passer rating, completion %, TD %, 3rd down conversion %, 1st down % and YPA.
*Extended his NFL record of most consecutive road games with a touchdown pass to 41.
*Became one of three QB's in NFL history with 9+ consecutive seasons with a 90.0+ passer rating. The other two QB's are Steve Young with 10 and Peyton Manning with 11.
*Became the first QB in NFL history with a 140.0+ passer rating and a 78.0+ completion % in a road playoff game.
*Became the only QB to lose a playoff game with a 125+ passer rating. The others were 68-0.
*Became the only QB in NFL history with a 113+ passer rating in the regular season and a 120+ passer rating in the playoffs in the same year.
*Set the NFL record for the highest passer rating in the month of December (133.7) - winning him the NFC Offensive Player of the Month award.
*Set the franchise record for highest passer rating in a postseason game (143.6 vs Green Bay).
*Had a streak of 38 consecutive games with a TD pass, which moved him into 5th place all-time - behind only Johnny Unitas, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Drew Brees.
*Became the first QB in NFL history with four straight road games with 3+ TD's and 0 INT's.
*Became the first QB in NFL history with 4+ game-winning drives in 4 consecutive seasons.
*Became just the 9th QB since 1960 to lead the NFL in completion %, YPA and passer rating in a single season.
*Became the first QB in NFL history with 6 games in a season with a 135.0+ passer rating. Peyton Manning and Steve Young are the only QB's with 5 in a season.
*Tied the longest streak of his career for consecutive games with a 60+ completion % at 17, which is the 3rd longest streak in NFL history. Also became the only QB in NFL history with 2 streaks of 17+ games with a 60+ completion %.
*Tied the NFL record for most games in a single season with a 60+ completion % (15). 6th quarterback to do so - the others were Kurt Warner, Peyton Manning, Daunte Culpepper, Drew Brees and Philip Rivers.
*Tied NFL record for most consecutive games in a single season with a 60+ completion % (15). 2nd quarterback to do so - the other was Philip Rivers.
*6th highest single season completion % of all-time (69.9). Only QB's ahead of him are Drew Brees (twice), Ken Anderson, Steve Young and Joe Montana.
*6th highest single season QB rating of all-time (113.2). Only QB's ahead of him are Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning (twice), Nick Foles and Tom Brady.
*Moved into 2nd place in in NFL history with a 97.6 career passer rating - behind only Aaron Rodgers.
*Set a new franchise record for career passing yards - passing Troy Aikman.
*Set a new franchise record for career game-winning drives - passing Roger Staubach.

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"I just believe it so much in my heart that Tony Romo's greatest traits are his physical and mental toughness," coach Jason Garrett said. "All the great players in this league have those traits. Tony certainly exhibits them week-in and week-out. ... he's just a helluva football player.''

Blame Game

The Cowboys have effectively put "The Overturn'' behind them. Heck, they don't even want an apology, Jerry Jones noting, “There’s no consolation. … That’s just a little bit like throwing dirt in your face, or salt on your wound.''

No dirt. No salt. No blaming of the refs for the Dez non-catch call. Blame the Cowboys, because that's who they blame for the 26-21 loss in Ice Bowl II. ... and the Cowboys franchise will be better, stronger, for having done so. We explain here.

Cowboys and DeMarco

"I’m not worried about my future,' DeMarco Murray said on Monday. "I just lost a big game, the biggest game of my life.''

Understood. Shortly, though, the future will be here. And Cowboys standout Murray quite likely will not be. Our in-depth breakdown of the Cowboys and DeMarco and A Future Outside Of Dallas.

By the way, if you are falling for this "Dez vs. DeMarco thing'' in terms of the Cowboys having to choose one or the other, you've got it all wrong. Why?

Fish's Cowboys Cap Primer

Because of what you'll read and discuss here, is why. "Fish's Cowboys Cap Primer'' makes it clear the Cowboys can do ANYTHING they want - even carve out $49 million worth of room. Dez. DeMarco. Suh. Anybody. Anything.

"Yes, yes we can (be players in free agency),'' Jerry confirmed. "“We’re in a lot better shape under the cap than we’ve been at any time over the last two or three years. That’s good.”

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That doesn't mean they will spend; it means they can, and if you want an education on it all, dig in to this link. "Fish's Cowboys Cap Primer'' ... already duplicated and "borrowed-from,'' but we do it on CowboysHQ.com Boards without "slideshows'' and with updated contributions from you, the reader, and with the guidance of the Cowboys front office itself.

1-on-1 with Dez

Yes, we've moved on. But we still want you to know how close we can bring you inside the Cowboys with this Fish column from Green Bay:

"I am walking down a cinder-block corridor inside Lambeau Field alongside Dez Bryant, who is still in uniform but for his stocking feet. And the Dallas Cowboys receiver is politely, solemnly, mechanically retracing in slow-motion his on-field steps as he counts them down.''

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Read Fish and Dez and "Gimme Three Steps'' here, exclusively on CowboysHQ.com.

Cowboys Coaching Carousel

The Joneses have batted 1.000 on their first three offseason priorities with the late-Wednesday agreement reached with offensive boss Scott Linehan, who joins coach Jason Garrett and defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli with new deals. We've got the goods here in Cowboys Coaching Carousel.

Onside Kicks

If you read CowboysHQ.com daily, you already know this stuff, but here goes, a quick recap: Marinelli and Linehan have new three-year deals that make them among the highst-paid coordinators in the NFL, to work under Garrett with his new five-year, $30-mil deal. ... Callahan didn't want to stay here. Under any circumstances. He makes a downward move to Washington. Frank Pollack, as we wrote Monday, will be the OL coach. And as we suggested Monday, Marc Colombo makes sense as his aide. Rich Bisaccia is staying. Monte Kiffin wishes to; we'll see there ... We're working on a major "Jerry as Exec of the Year'' project. Stay tuned ...

Tips, Tendencies and Tells

Do we know what the Cowboys will do in the draft about 100 days from now? Yes, we do, in a sense, based on what we've discovered in "The Cowboys Draft: 6 Tendencies And Tells.'' Fascinating work by KD here.

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The Final Word

"We started something four years ago when I became the head coach of the Cowboys. It's a word I think about every day: 'Build.'" - Jason Garrett.


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