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Rookie Kicker Wins Game And Saves Face For Romo

folk-buff.jpgWade Phillips can officially be called “genius” now if only for his decision to keep R Nick Folk out of Arizona over veteran Martin Grammatica.  Folk cooly booted two, not one, but two 53-yard FG’s last night to give the Cowboys an exciting come-from-behind victory over Buffalo, 25-24. 

I’m not particularly saying that Grammatica wouldn’t have made the FG as he is certainly a very good kicker under pressure as well, but I’m not so sure in the current days of making teams kick FG’s twice in a row he would have made it a second time.  I’ll get into to my thoughts on what has become common practice of coaches calling timeouts just before the snap on FG attempts some other time, a travesty against a rule meant for something entirely different.

Folk, who also made three other field goals of 47, 29 and 37 yards, respectively, prior to the game-winner, no doubt deserves MVP status for this game.  But one other aspect of this game also has to be recognized and that is the overall team play exhibited by the Cowboys as a whole.  The defense, headed by LB DeMarcus Ware, played an outstanding game.  They came up with big plays of their own and continually overcame mistakes by their QB to keep the Cowboys in a position to make a comeback.  Other than the points Buffalo scored on turnovers and special teams, they allowed a Buffalo offense with terrific field position through most of the game only 3 points.

The special teams, although burned earlier on a 103-yard kick-off return by Buffalo’s Terrence McGee,  came up with the on-side kick to give Folk the chance to win the game. 

Obviously, QB Tony Romo had a terrible game which is even an understatement in his own words.  When asked after the game about the four interceptions in the first half, he said, “How many did you say, only four, I thought it was seven or something like that,”  smiling the entire time and talking about how special this team is to play for and how they bailed him out time after time during the game. 

Most of the televised comments after the game were about Romo and how he managed to move the team at the end of the game when he had to in order to get them the win.  That is a very positive sign for a young quarterback and his ability, but more importantly, it is the sign of a very good team.   It’s the type of game that truly defines whether a team, regardless of the circumstances it faces, can come up with enough plays to win a close game.   

Admittedly, I wasn’t able to watch the game as closely as usual due to work obligations,  but several plays and players stand out in this game.  The defensive play of LB’s DeMarcus Ware and Bradie James, who stopped the Bills cold on a 4th and one after Romo’s second interception in the first quarter which kept the game from becoming out-of-reach.  Terrence Newman’s interception of a tipped ball by DeMarcus Ware stopped another late drive of the Bills that could have iced the game for them.  And of course, the most notable being the deflection of the on-side kick by WR Sam Hurd that gave the Cowboys the ball in better field position at the end of the game that led to the eventual FG by Folk.

It wasn’t the best game played by the Cowboys, but in the end, who knows, it just may be the game that really gives them the confidence and ability to do what no team has done for a decade in Dallas, win a playoff game.  As for Coach Phillips, congratulations on such a great victory over the team that probably wishes they never let you go, whether it was a firing or not.


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2 Responses to “Rookie Kicker Wins Game And Saves Face For Romo”

  1. Sam says:

    Many of the previous posts here seemed like a cut and paste job from articles from AP or some other news agency. So this was a welcome change with some good inputs from the author himself. I would like to see more articles on this blog which are different from what I might see on some other site or http://www.dallascowboys.com.

  2. Jeff says:

    I was just telling a friend this morning that they should do something about the rule that allows the opposing sideline a timeout when a team is running up to kick the ball. I am not sure how to fix it given the rule itself, but maybe they could institute a very specific exception, like “No Timeouts allowed after the play clock has started on kicks in the last two minutes”. Which sounds conviluted just writing it..

    They could call it the “Lucy Rule”…

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