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Shutdown Corner

Tony Romo gives Cowboys fans hope, which might just be the cruelest jab of all

Jay Busbee
Shutdown Corner

What are we to make of Tony Romo? A week after pulling the most Romo-like move ever, setting a franchise record for passing and throwing five touchdowns in a loss, here he was back in the national spotlight, taking on the hated Redskins on Sunday night. And once again, he rose to the occasion, but this time the tides broke his way and the Cowboys won 31-16.

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This game, there would be no late interception to cost Dallas the game, no way for Romo to give his legions of detractors more ammunition. He wasn't exceptional, only throwing for 170 yards and one touchdown against one interception. No, this was just a night on which Romo had just enough grace and touch to keep the game out of Washington's reach.

The big question going into Week 7 will be whether Dallas will have the services of running back DeMarco Murray and defensive end DeMarcus Ware. Both left the game in the first half, suffering a sprained knee and an injured right quad respectively, and neither returned. Their status for future games remained uncertain at the end of the game.

Dallas now finds itself in first place in the NFC East, tied with Philadelphia at 3-3. There's plenty of football to be played, of course, and injuries are going to be a serious concern for Dallas. Philadelphia is gaining confidence every week under new head coach Chip Kelly. But the playoff hopes of the Giants and, most likely, the Redskins are DOA.

That leaves the door wide open for Romo to lead the Cowboys forward. Certainly, nothing short of a Super Bowl victory will erase the "choker" label across Romo's forehead. But if the Cowboys were to make the playoffs, and then knock off a San Francisco or a New Orleans? Ah, then we'd be forced to reconsider Mr. Romo just a bit, wouldn't we?

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Then again, as both pro- and anti-Romo fans know, this could all be setting Cowboys fans up for an even greater heartbreak. We've seen it before.

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