Jerry Jones: Tony Romo ‘the best in the business in the fourth quarter’

Jerry Jones: Tony Romo ‘the best in the business in the fourth quarter’

There’s been some discussion in Philadelphia this week about Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo not getting enough credit for being one of the premier passers in the NFL. And actually, I agree with that premise. Romo has been putting up some gaudy numbers the last bunch of seasons.

The reason he tends to go overlooked though is his propensity for choke jobs late in games, especially when the Dallas’ season is on the line. Fair or not, quarterbacks are measured in part by winning, and Romo’s one career playoff win sort of says it all.

All of which is why it sounds so odd to people when Cowboys owner Jerry Jones would praises Romo’s work in the fourth quarter. For as long as the guy has been in the league, that botched hold in Seattle has been following Romo around and growing in legend with every meltdown fumble and interception to cost his team the game.

That’s not what Jones remembers though. Here are his thoughts on the job Romo has done in the clutch, via the Dallas Morning News:

“I’m expecting to win it,” Jones said on 105.3 The Fan [KRLD-FM]. “I hadn’t booked it, but we had ‘em against Denver. And we’ve got a quarterback that’s the best in the business in the fourth quarter. He’s the best. He can make it happen when it’s not there. Other than being ahead with the ball, there’s no one I’d rather have at this time than to have Romo trying to get us down the field in a short period of time.”

As Deadspin’s Barry Petchesky points out, Jones is surprisingly backed up by statistics on this. Remarkably, no QB in NFL history has a better passer rating, while Romo is sixth among active quarterbacks in fourth-quarter comebacks, ninth in game-winning drives.

Heck, Romo authored nine game-winning drives over the previous two seasons combined. That’s all well and good, but also means nothing when the Cowboys are sitting at home watching the postseason every year.

Anecdotally, what always sticks out about Romo are the horrible mistakes in big games. He can throw for 500 yards with five touchdown passes as he did against Denver in Week 5, but all a lot of people are going to remember is the INT he tossed in the end to secure a Broncos victory.

But hey, keep on believing that jazz, Jerry Jones. Who knows, maybe this is Romo’s and the Cowboys’ year. If it is, they’ll have to go through Philadelphia on Sunday first.

>> Jerry Jones says Romo ‘best in the business’ in fourth [Deadspin]

NBA Power Rankings: The Sixers remain in the bottom third of the NBA

NBA Power Rankings: The Sixers remain in the bottom third of the NBA

The most recent NBA power rankings have the Sixers dropping further or remaining in the lower third of the NBA. 

Recent news of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons’ injury situations have the experts assuming the season is a lost cause and the team is focused on this June’s draft.

A trade of Nerlens Noel confirms the Sixers are banking on building around Embiid and wanted to get a return on Noel instead of letting him walk at the end of the season.

Last week
The Sixers split their only two games of the week: A 120-112 win against the Wizards Friday night and a buzzer-beater 110-109 loss to the Knicks Saturday night.

Against the Wizards, Robert Covington recorded a double-double with 25 points and 11 rebounds – both team leaders. The Sixers had seven players in double-digit points including Dario Saric and Gerald Henderson both pouring in 20. The Sixers did not give up the lead after the beginning of the second quarter. 

Carmelo Anthony drained a game-winning shot on Saturday for the Knicks. Jahlil Okafor led the Sixers with 28 points while Saric added 19 and Covington tallied 20. 

This week
• Tonight, the Sixers face the Warriors in Philadelphia (7 p.m./CSN)

• Wednesday against the Heat in Miami (7:30 p.m./CSN)

• Friday they face the Knicks at home (7 p.m./CSN)

• Saturday they stay at the Wells Fargo Center for the Pistons (6 p.m./CSN)

What the experts say
John Schuhmann of NBA.com was gracious only dropping the Sixers from 21 to 22 this past week. Maybe he trusts the process. 

He makes a good point about Okafor's situation after the Noel trade:

“The Sixers have been at their worst offensively with Okafor on the floor, but he scored 28 points on 11-for-19 shooting on Saturday, getting two huge, final-minute buckets in the post before Carmelo Anthony hit the game-winner. He may not be the better fit, but he has two more years on his rookie deal.”

Grant Hughes of Bleacher Report dropped the Sixers to 24 on his list, three spots lower than last week. 

He took a look into Embiid’s efficiently in the post and found some interesting numbers from Chris Herring of ESPN's FiveThirtyEight:

“The 7-footer has really been in a giving mood near the basket, where he's coughed the ball up on nearly 22 percent of his post-up looks, the highest turnover rate among NBA players with at least 100 plays, according to Synergy. And his turnover rate jumps up to a whopping 32 percent when teams aggressively send a second defender to double Embiid in the post."

Hughes ended his piece by saying the Sixers look to be on a downturn for the rest of the season. 

Jeremy Wood of Sports Illustrated moved the Sixers one spot from last week which leaves them at 26 on his list. 

He questions “trusting the process” stating that there are many questions surrounding Bryan Colangelo and the front office after the Noel trade. 

“It’s a longer-term question, but there will be short-term clues.”

Couldn’t have said it any better. 

Finally, Matt Moore of CBS Sports drops the Sixers from 22 to 26 this week. Moore is starting to see a repetitive story with the Sixers and it’s struggles. 

“Usually if a team loses both its top picks in a rebuilding year, you feel awful for them and their fans. With the Sixers, you're left just feeling like this is the status quo, forever.”

Villanova keeps No. 2 ranking despite another loss to Butler

Villanova keeps No. 2 ranking despite another loss to Butler

Villanova remained the No. 2 team in the nation in Monday's AP poll after a 1-1 week.

'Nova split its two games against a pair of ranked teams, losing by eight points at home to No. 22 Butler on Wednesday before rebounding for a 16-point win over No. 23 Creighton Saturday.

The Wildcats are 27-3 and 14-3 in the Big East, losing to Butler two times by eight points apiece and to Marquette by two.

Butler moved up from 22 to 13.

Villanova kept its No. 2 ranking because of a loss by previous No. 1 Gonzaga. The Zags moved down to fourth, while Kansas jumped up from No. 3 to No. 1.

Kansas received 58 first-place votes. Villanova and Gonzaga received two apiece, with the remaining three going to No. 3 UCLA.

Villanova has just one regular season game remaining Saturday at Georgetown.