Romo Out

Posted: December 27th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 72 Comments »

It is official. Tony Romo is done for the season.

Time will tell if that’s a good or bad thing for the Eagles. If Kyle Orton plays like Kyle Orton, it is probably good. If Orton has the game of his life, we’ll all be mad at Romo for getting hurt.

I’m glad Romo is having the surgery. He’s still got several good years left. No reason to mess around with a back injury.

* * * * *

The news is out early enough that the coaches can tweak anything they need to in the gameplan in regard to Orton being the QB. I doubt much will change, but you never know what subtleties might be there. Maybe Orton throws better to the right than the left. Maybe Orton has a tell on screen passes. Things like that.

* * * * *

Some really, really awful BGN hack named Brandon Lee Gowton wrote a good piece on how the Boys and Eagles have changed since the first game. Here are a couple of nuggets.

• In the six weeks leading up to the first game, the Eagles were scoring 27.6 points per game and allowing 29.8 ppg. The Cowboys were scoring 30.5 ppg and allowing only 25.3 ppg. Now eight weeks after the first encounter, the Eagles are averaging 31.1 ppg scored and only 20.5 ppg allowed. The Cowboys are scoring 27.1 ppg and allowing 31.6 ppg.

• Trent Cole has come alive. He’s really been getting after the quarterback in recent weeks. First 6 games: 0 sacks, 11 tackles, 5 assists. Last 8 games: 8 sacks, 26 tackles, 5 assists

Lots of good stuff in there. The trends certainly favor the Eagles.

* * * * *

Bucky Brooks is an erratic analyst for He writes some good pieces, but will also turn around and say some dumb things. He put together a pretty good piece on how the Eagles-Boys game will go differently this time around.

The one flaw with the piece is that based on his comments, you’d think Dallas had blanket coverage in the first game. That’s not the case or even close to it. Eagles receivers were running around wide open all game. Nick Foles made some terrible reads and some terrible throws. An average game by Foles the first time around would have probably led to 20 points for the Eagles. He was awful.

The Eagles don’t need to change all that much. They need to execute better this time around. That’s the real key.

* * * * *

If you need a good laugh, FakeWIPCaller has his Year in Review column up.  My favorite line:

– Awesome win for the Eagles Sunday night against the Bears. But it’s concerning to me that they couldn’t get to 60 points. I’m afraid that might come back to bite them.

Totally agree. This will hurt the Eagles in the BCS rankings.

* * * * *

Mike Tanier wrote a funny preview for Sunday’s game. He’s convinced the future of mankind is riding on the game.

If all of this post-apocalyptic talk doesn’t make you an Eagles fan for one week, nothing will. But here is the terrifying part: the only quarterback to make the Cowboys defense look good this year was Nick Foles (with an assist from Matt Barkley after Foles suffered a concussion), and the only defense that made Foles look truly terrible this year was the Cowboys. If Chip Kelly has an Admiral Akbar moment and Foles has another poor outing against the Cowboys, the year-long feebleness of the Cowboys defense will be attributed to Romo’s remote-control anti-leadership. The fabric of modern society will crumble, and in six months all standard spelling, capitalization and punctuation will be outlawed except RANDOM ALL CAPS to EMPHASIEZ that ROMO CHOAKZ,.,,!

The only force defending human culture right now is the Cowboys defense, which is still bad enough to collapse before the Kelly steamroller and render any Orton heroics moot. Relying on the unreliable to be unreliable is usually a safe bet, but this time there’s an awful lot riding on it.

Prediction: Eagles 31, Cowboys 20

Good stuff.

* * * * *

I posted an Around the League piece over at ScoutsNotebook.


72 Comments on “Romo Out”

  1. 1 CrackSammich said at 2:20 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Jesus, we’ve finally found someone who makes Foles look somewhat normal. Orton looks a bit like Stevie Janowski from Eastbound and Down.

  2. 2 Anthony Hart said at 3:35 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    This is the only thing standing in our way

  3. 3 Mac said at 11:04 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Is that Dave Grohl?

  4. 4 Ark87 said at 11:16 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Oh my god, I see it! Quick, NFL look a likes for the rest if Nirvana!

  5. 5 sprawl said at 3:59 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Cowboys QBs looking pretty good here…

  6. 6 P_P_K said at 4:07 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Kitna may look like a mall Santa, but Orton is hardly a Speedo model. The article in your link is a good one. It points out how Orton is, actually, a decent qb. I agree with the writer that it was their mistake not to give him more reps during pre-season.

  7. 7 Ark87 said at 5:15 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I saw that quote, he looks smaller than Orton in this picture, but sweatpants ain’t flattering on anybody.

  8. 8 P_P_K said at 5:50 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Looks like he gave up on having a 6 pack and started working on having a keg.

  9. 9 Ark87 said at 5:52 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    either way, if Orton goes down…they may just want to run the Wild Cat with Murray…

  10. 10 ACViking said at 5:53 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Murray may suddenly pull a hamstring.

  11. 11 Ark87 said at 6:21 PM on December 27th, 2013: don’t laugh at that joke, Miles….

  12. 12 eagleyankfan said at 2:57 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    that was the worst kept secret ever….how in the world could Orton be in “game” shape? If Eagles don’t lose focus — should be a win.

  13. 13 SteveH said at 3:00 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    #7 on FakeWIP’s list of worst cracks me up.

  14. 14 disqus_jB7dl5fzvO said at 3:40 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    One of the writers at had a mailbag feature and this was one of the questions:

    Q: If Tony Romo is “bad sex” as one of your readers so brilliantly put it in last week’s mailbag, what does that make Minnesota’s QBs?
    —Kurt, Anchorage

    SG: Prison sex.

  15. 15 Gary said at 5:42 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I always love Bill’s columns until they get NBA heavy.

  16. 16 RobNE said at 3:42 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Is Orton the highest paid backup (who was clearly signed to back up, not like Vick etc.)? I was surprised this week when I saw how much he was making.

    Also, interesting to not have a 3rd qb on the roster. Does that mean that Orton runs the opposing team’s plays (and gets less snaps in the Cowboys offense during practice)?

  17. 17 D3FB said at 4:01 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Alot of teams have been going away from having 3 QBs on the roster. It’s pretty rare for you to have two quaterbacks hurt in a game, so teams feel that its more beneficial to use that spot elsewhere. I mean if your top two QBs get seriously hurt, your season is over so it doesn’t make much difference who plays at that point.

  18. 18 Richard O'Connor said at 4:11 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    True, but the Cowboys and the Patriots are the only teams to not have a third QB on the practice squad.

    The Rams only have two on their roster as well, with a third on IR.

    It seems like having the #3 helps in practice more than game day.

  19. 19 RobNE said at 4:20 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Right but I guess I want to know does this make Orton less prepared bc he is busy or at least distracted doing weekly tasks typically performed by the qb3?

  20. 20 Brandon Lee Gowton said at 3:53 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I don’t know, I think I heard that BGN guy was OK. But that’s only because he paid me to say this.

  21. 21 TommyLawlor said at 5:10 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    He gets by purely on sex appeal.

  22. 22 mrparabolic said at 6:54 PM on December 27th, 2013:


  23. 23 P_P_K said at 9:01 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Like many of who comment here.

  24. 24 Mike Roman said at 3:54 PM on December 27th, 2013:


    Gcobb had a theory after that first Dallas game that perhaps Foles suffered his concussion earlier in that game than previously thought. I think he pointed out the 3rd play from scrimmage where Foles got hit or sacked and his head bounced off the turf. I never heard anymore play on that angle from anyone but it certainly could explain quite a bit.

    It is so hard to imagine that Nick was just having a bad day that could be THAT BAD when you compare the game to the rest of his performances this year. The question that I ask myself is why wouldn’t the Eagles just report that he suffered the concussion earlier in the game and that’s why he was so off that day? But the answer is very simple. Preventing and diagnosing concussions has become so important that the Eagles would risk coming under heavy scrutiny for not realizing sooner that Foles “wasn’t right”.

    I’m not saying this is the case but I think it is at least plausible.

  25. 25 P_P_K said at 4:01 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    This is a really interesting point and would explain a lot about the deviant nature of Fole’s performance. (have at it with the “deviance”). If he did have the concussion and continued to play, you’re right; it’s likely the kind of thing no one in the organization wants to draw attention to.

  26. 26 sprawl said at 4:04 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    “it’s likely the kind of thing no one in the organization wants to draw attention to.”

    So plausible it hurts! (but don’t tell the team doc)

  27. 27 ICDogg said at 4:10 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Yeah, I don’t know if it was a concussion or some other issue but he wasn’t right for most of that game.

  28. 28 A Roy said at 4:31 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    When you look at all the games in which Foles has played, the Dallas game seems like more of an outlier than the Raiders game.

  29. 29 ICDogg said at 7:56 PM on December 27th, 2013:


  30. 30 RobNE said at 4:18 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Lots of us had that theory gcobb must read Iggles blitz

  31. 31 Mike Roman said at 4:23 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Ah. I don’t always get to read through the comments here so I didn’t know this was already discussed. In G’s defense, he did post that a day or two after the game. With that being said, I’m still sure he reads Igglesblitz.

  32. 32 RobNE said at 4:51 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I didn’t mean anything by it just agreeing that yes I think that’s totally possible. It may be the most logical conclusion.

  33. 33 Guest said at 4:22 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    This is from the last play of the first drive where he took an IG penalty:

  34. 34 sprawl said at 4:24 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    This was from the last play on the first drive where he took an IG penalty…

    (Dammit I can’t get it to animate yet)

  35. 35 sprawl said at 4:26 PM on December 27th, 2013:


    Last play from the 1st drive against Dallas his head hit pretty hard but this is the best angle I could find so far…

  36. 36 GEAGLE said at 5:17 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Honestly….I don’t even get why people care….the kids been TORCHING the NFL 90% of the time he steps on the field and He is doing it with:
    NO NFL experience
    Not much experience in this offense
    Which happens to be an offense that asks the QB to make a lot more decisions then most of the other offenses around the league,,Doubt many teams use package plays more frequently then we ask of FOles..

    Don’t take FOles for granted..No experience, instead of handing the ball off, he throws a pass to Celek! who went on to slide and seal the game. Tony Romo who people call a GREAT veteran franchise QB, audibles out of a run play, deciding to throw a pass in a very similar situation, and blew the game with his 3000th 4th quarter INT….

    Every great QB in the history of football has had more then 1 horrific game that looked like the Dallas game. What’s his next worse game? Lol the Vikings game where we scored 30 points and he almost had 500 yards? If that’s a bad game, we are SOOO damn lucky!!

    when FOles has another 2 or 3 “Dallas games” then I will start worrying about WHY…

  37. 37 ACViking said at 5:22 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I guess folks still ask the question because the only D-Coordinator who seemed to make Foles look bad was the Cowboys’ Monte Kiffin. Just like Foles owns the Bucs, maybe people are concerned that Kiffin may have the antidote to Foles.

    Back in mid- to late 80s to early ’90s, Bill Walsh and Joe Montana owned the NFL (a lot). . . except for one team. The NYGiants. Belichick was better than anyone at shutting down the WCO. Not always. But far more than anyone else.

    So — while Foles has been very good to great at times since Dallas-1 — I’m not sure the question’s an unfair one.

  38. 38 GEAGLE said at 5:26 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I look that game as NO different then a rare day when greatness, like say Micheal Jordan or Reggie Miller just can’t buy a bucket…some days. Believe it or not, you are just off….I don’t get how people can Credit Monte when Eagles WR were running around wide open all game long..I’m a diehard FOles fan, but that game was on no one but him….he just didn’t have his stroke..maybe he banged his head, maybe just an odd day that all the greats have had, maybe his mechanics were off due to adrenaline/nerves(although our coaches said it wasn’t technical/mechanical issues)…
    Whatever it was, I have a strong feeling that days like that will be a very rare occurrence going forward…we are watching this kid do some historically amazing ISH, and he still has so much growing, and improving to do…his future is scary!!!

  39. 39 ACViking said at 5:37 PM on December 27th, 2013:


    No one agrees with you more than I do. Stuff happens. Good players use it as motivation — but never tell anyone. I’d like to believe that’s Foles. And by McCoy’s recent account, it’s very much Foles.

    If Foles has the chance, I believe he’d like to hang 42 points on the Cowboys. Just to make sure everyone remembers the first game was, as you say, just one bad day at the office.

  40. 40 OregonDucker said at 7:39 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    AC – Wrong, the number is 60+ not 42. But as GE has said the final 21 will probably come from Vick. Oh well.

  41. 41 Andy124 said at 5:56 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I really don’t even get why people care
    We put a man on the moon because we are obsessed with explaining things that we don’t understand.

    From a quick google search, I think this paragraph sums up the following article nicely:
    Evolution made us the ultimate learning machines, and the ultimate learning machines need a healthy dash of curiosity to help us take full advantage of this learning capacity.

  42. 42 A_T_G said at 8:33 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    From my own personal experiences with concussions, I posed the same theory here. To me, that is what happened. It just fits with what happened when I had two concussions. I doubt we will ever know definitively, however.

  43. 43 Scott J said at 4:55 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I wonder if Davis is using Cole differently in the last few games. I’ll have to keep an eye on him Sunday night.

  44. 44 Anders said at 10:46 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Davis has used him more with the hand in the ground in both even and odd fronts

  45. 45 GEAGLE said at 5:09 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I keep debating whether I think Dallas scores 13 or 20? Depends on if they get the meaningless late TD I guess…

    we are a well coached team that DESERVES to go to the Playoffs…no one can tell me that Dallas deserves this as much as we do TODAY..Luckily we are a REAL TEAM. And they are dysfunctional FRAUDS!!

    Herman Edwards describes it’s best…now while you read this, you have to imagine these words In that ultra Hyper, Herm Edwards Twang/Dialect….”They got the Big, Gawdy cowboy hat. They got the big, shiney, flashy belt buckle…..But they ain’t got No Cattle” lol….FRAUDS!!!!
    All appetizers and Desserts….No Meat and potatoes…..

  46. 46 Jamie Parker said at 10:20 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    No one gets what they deserve. We only get what we take. And the Eagles will make the playoffs if they go down there and take this game.

  47. 47 ACViking said at 5:16 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Re: A Question I’ve Wondered Since Week 1 about the Kelly Script — or Not

    Hey, T-Law:

    In the long WCO tradition, Andy Reid scripted the first 15 or so plays for every game.

    But, forgive me in advance, I don’t remember reading anything one way or the other about Chip Kelly’s approach.

    Does he “script” plays. Granted, he uses about 4-5 base running plays out of various formations, motion, and with a host of routes.

    But when after the Birds take their first possession, is he working off a script.

    I’ve not had that impression at all.

    In fact, a couple weeks back, one of the players or staff talked about how familiar the players — especially Foles — are with what Kelly wants to do *situationally* by game day.

    Using situations as your North star, a script not only wouldn’t be nearly as relevant as *field-position-down-distance-defense-score-time*. A script would seem downright anachronistic.

    When I watch Kelly processing all those factors I just mentioned, I think of the NFL when the very best QBs played chess with defenses, relying on exactly those sorts of considerations. Guys like Unitas, Namath, Bradshaw, all the way up to Jim Kelly had a game plan — but reacted immediately to what they saw from the first snap.

    Anyway, just curious. And sorry if I missed the answer 6 months ago.

    Also, on the play sheet that Kelly holds, it reads “S 1” in green and (maybe) “T 1” in yellow. Hard to tell. What do those designations mean?

  48. 48 Ark87 said at 5:32 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Good theories. It would definitely help to have a script during the green light sessions. At the same time I always felt like Andy Reid scripted (and let people know it) to be completely unpredictable. Down and distance? Play doesn’t match the situation? Then they won’t see it coming. Almost made the defender have to defend the whole playbook for every situation. Always felt like that was a source of a lot of head scratching on my part.

    Admittedly I know very little about Reid’s scripting, did he add situational elements to it? A strict script like that would be very anti-chip. But more of a situational formula script type thing, that gets tweaked each week depending on the gameplan (like you were talking about), I could totally see that.

  49. 49 ACViking said at 5:43 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I understood that AR would go off-script on 3rd and long. Same if the team had a quick holding or personal-foul penalty.

    Definitely with you on the head-scratching. Hated that after throwing an incompletion on 1st down, you could bet your last dollar with Secretariat-like odds that a Staley/Westbrook/McCoy running play was coming. Those early-game 2nd-down runs didn’t seem to yield much. But that’s just how I remember things.

  50. 50 Ark87 said at 5:50 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Our memories seem to corroborate.

  51. 51 D3FB said at 5:52 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I would be willing to bet that Kelly uses some kind of script. The reason to script plays is to see how a defense is going to react to certain formations, motions, etc. So while it may not be Play 1: IZR Play 2: Bubble Screen Play 3: crossing routes, it may be more that in the first 10 to 15 plays Kelly wants to run multiple personnel groupings and various motions to see how the defense wants to line up or how the secondary rotates.

  52. 52 ACViking said at 5:55 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I’ll buy that. That’s the chess component of probing defenses. All great coaches and QBs have done it.

    But I like that (I believe) Kelly’s not slavishly wedded to a particular order of plays — as most WCO coaches have been.

  53. 53 D3FB said at 5:58 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    The only reason I think this is the case is prior to this past season my college coach went out to Oregon for a week to try to glean some knowledge from Helfrich and company. While we still scripted this year the scripts went from we’re going to run our 10 best plays as it had been previously to more of a probing style with alot more play types being called.

  54. 54 ACViking said at 6:02 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    That is awesome intelligence on the Kelly method.

    It makes lots of sense — to me, at least, as a someone who played when the wishbone was just taking flight.

  55. 55 OregonDucker said at 7:22 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    AC – Maybe the “S” refers to situation? The “T” could refer to coverage, as in tight man coverage? From what I’ve read Chip knows the gameplan goes out the window when the game starts; instead, he’s looking for defense reactions to a certain situation. explores this in great detail. I remember how Chip responded to Harbaugh with a play – Chip morphed the play during the game to burn/frustrate Harbaugh to no end (you know throwing the clipboard down and yelling frustration.) That’s why, should we play Harbaugh or Carroll this year, I have every confidence that Chip will out scheme them (and frustrate them to hell.)

  56. 56 Anders said at 10:45 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Kelly said in an interview once that he does not script plays because he says you can’t predict that many plays a head. As he said, he does not deal in hypotheticals

  57. 57 Phyxius said at 5:58 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    We’ll win as long as we don’t squib kick.

  58. 58 Ark87 said at 6:25 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Speaking of, Were we boldly daring Hester to return kicks (in some cases forcing) or was Henery off or what? Big Balls Fipp

  59. 59 Crus57 said at 7:14 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I’m hoping it was some plan to make Hester uncomfortable by moving him off the common return ‘spot’ in the endzone, and to make him have to field the ball closer to or in traffic.
    If that wasn’t the plan then Henery needs about 50 smoothies applied to his leg, because it may be dieing.

  60. 60 Westport_Johnny said at 6:02 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Question for Tommy: Optimism is running high, need to take the “feel good” to the next level… Sometime soon, can we discuss NFC cap mgmt? Got to figure the story will show our Eagles are in decent shape while our rivals are in cap hell (and no fix in sight). Always wirth a smile & a chuckle…

  61. 61 Scott J said at 7:12 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Domo wrote an article with some quotes from Shurmer saying “the sky’s the limit” for the offense. They’re still in the beginning phases of what they want to do.

  62. 62 OregonDucker said at 7:28 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    From a Ducker perspective, that’s how I see it. Although in the Bears game, we began to see the fruits of Chip’s swiss watch precision. If the players execute correctly, the Eagles will continue to be very, very scary on offense. I’m saying SB worthy scary.

  63. 63 P_P_K said at 8:59 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Like on Halloween, scary is good.

  64. 64 Baloophi said at 8:36 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Gene Steratore on the whistles and flags this week. Not too bad…

    Here’s our dear friend Peter King with an interesting profile…

  65. 65 A_T_G said at 8:43 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I am surprised the Cowboys let the cat out of the bag so quickly, or at least stopped trying to stuff it back into the bag. With Romo going into surgery today I thought they would just downgrade him to doubtful.

  66. 66 P_P_K said at 8:58 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    What are the rules on this sort of thing? Why doesn’t a team just list everyone who is known to be injured as “questionable,” then issue the roster at game time? After all, how could anyone enforce the difference between, “questionable,” or “probable,” or the other labels?

  67. 67 ICDogg said at 9:36 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    Bill Bellichick agrees—Bills-Injury-Report/27d29693-8222-4997-826d-f5706eca49f4

  68. 68 Jamie Parker said at 10:41 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    I don’t know why they have to tell anyone in the first place.

  69. 69 Maggie said at 1:45 AM on December 28th, 2013:

    The NFL instituted the practice of informing the public about injuries and probabilities because there is so much money bet on NFL games. The high rollers need to know who to bet on. There are literally millions of dollars gambled on NFL games EVERY WEEK.

  70. 70 Ark87 said at 9:23 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    ‘scuse my language, but the pro bowl is such bullshit

  71. 71 BlindChow said at 10:41 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    “Romo Out” is also how Tony Romo ends all conversations.

  72. 72 shah8 said at 11:33 PM on December 27th, 2013:

    The difference might not be too much in the secondary, but the fact that the DL got to Foles and hit him often. So better protection from the OL might be important.