Skip to main content

A Whole Lotta Missin'

He just didn't seem himself. 

Cries for Tony Romo, I'm certain, were ringing from coast to coast. 

"I can sure see where Drew is going to be criticized for the game," Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said when asked if the quarterback controversy some tried to start in training camp just picked up some steam. "But I don't think it's the thing our fans should think about or go to, or you (either)." 

Jones would continue to say Bledsoe, who finished the game completing just 16 of 33 passes for 246 yards, two sacks and three interceptions - the last in the final desperate minute - is the guy the Cowboys need if they are to get where they want to go this season. 

"There is none in my mind," Jones said of a quarterback debate having started, even though the Romo faction - fans and media - will be circling and highlighting Bledsoe's 45.8 QB rating. 

"Until the last interception, I thought we might have a (chance) here. I do not quarrel with sending him back in after every series." 

When Parcells was asked if he thought about changing quarterbacks with the offense stuck on 10 for the better part of 2½ quarters, he said, "No, sure didn't."  

Bledsoe, for his part, took responsibility that time in the second quarter for missing Owens, who, you know, is rather remarkable, finishing with six catches for 80 yards and one 21-yard touchdown on a remarkable last-second adjustment on a ball thrown over the wrong shoulder after limited practice all summer. He took responsibility for leading Witten instead of "stopping" him on that pass intercepted by Mathis, and the same for missing the linebacker on the intercepted pass intended for Glenn. 

But what Bledsoe wasn't saying was that there was something wrong. Give Fox analyst Troy Aikman credit for presuming Bledsoe's back had tightened up, and this in weather where nothing should have tightened up, believe me, unless cramping from dehydration. Bledsoe kept stretching his back on the sideline. 

And in the second half, while on the sideline between series, Bledsoe on several occasions kept throwing in the bench area, the last time to Owens, seemingly trying to stay loose. 

No one said anything afterward. But something seemed odd. 

And really, you could tell. The 34-year-old quarterback seemingly was having to put a little more oomph in his throws to get them out there on the edge, along with every bit of strength to nail Glenn with that 51-yarder late in the fourth quarter to draw the Cowboys close enough to cut the deficit to seven. 

When asked just before he left the locker room if his back or something had tightened up there, especially in the second half, or if something was wrong, Bledsoe, without looking up begrudgingly said, "Yeah." 


But, thinking better of it, he walked off saying, "It's nothing." 

Maybe it's not. But there were several curious throws in this game. For a guy who was razor sharp all through preseason, he left you wondering, didn't he, what the hell is going on out there? Hey, you don't get old in one quarter. 

Then again, you don't win a game in one quarter either. That's really about all the Cowboys seemed to play - offense, defense and kicking, with the exception of this Mat McBriar, who had what would have been a player of the week performance punting (53.2 average) had the Cowboys won. 

But they didn't. They lost. They lost because they didn't close out a team ready to be closed out in the second quarter. They lost because they missed far too many opportunities, made far too many mistakes, allowed a struggling offense to score far too many points and got called for far too many penalties (nine to the Jags' two). 

You watch, though, the quarterback is going to get the all blame for this. 

Which would be yet another miss on a Sunday loaded with misses.                 

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.