three progressions, and nothing, and was running out of options with Porter trying to tug him to the ground.
But just before his knee hit the ground, "at the last second I saw him out of the corner of my eye," claimed Romo as he slung the ball to first-year tight end Tony Curtis, who on his knees turned his first NFL reception into his first NFL touchdown to give the Cowboys a 17-13 lead.
There would be one more, and this one was a honey. The Cowboys led 23-13 with 4:08 remaining. They were in no-man's land, sitting there at the Miami 34 facing a fourth-and-5. That was much too far for Folk - 52 yards - to attempt a field goal out of the dirt but too close for Mat McBriar to punt.
Phillips, who seems to have a wild hair for making aggressive decisions if the first two games are any indication, ordered his offense to go for it. So go the Cowboys went, knowing their defense which ended up getting torched for 287 yards passing by Green was not out of the woods yet.
And yep, there was Romo sliding to his left, getting ready to throw a short crossing route hoping for the first down when he sensed what Terrell Owens was about to do - a little stutter and go route which was in no way part of the play but just two guys playing football, and why when asked about the play afterward Romo, sort of sheepishly saying something about "it was a little something we drew up."
Yeah, right. He meant made up on the run - Romo hitting Owens with a honey of a throw over the burned Renaldo Hill for the 34-yard touchdown pass, the 30-13 lead and setting up the jokester T.O. to pose in front of the goal-post standard acting as if he was using one of those old-timey film-reel cameras to video the Dolphins' defense, costing the Cowboys 15 yards.
"I just recognized at the last second what he was doing," Romo said.
Not even the Cowboys' somewhat skeptical defense, void of Terence Newman, Greg Ellis and Jason Ferguson, could squander a 17-point lead in four minutes.
But then, too, not even missing Terry Glenn for a second game and Crayton for nearly a quarter, nor this vaunted Miami defense could slow down this Cowboys offense which now has scored the third-most points in the opening two games of a season since putting up 91 in 1971 and 87 in 1968.
Not the humidity nor playing on the road, where the Cowboys have now won four consecutive games, would cause this team to as much as whimper.
And certainly not the inconvenient stopover in New Orleans for aircraft repairs could sidetrack or distract this team evidently listening to the head coach, he of the glass-half-full philosophy. Hey, the three-hour delay was a chance to grab some unexpected and much appreciated gumbo in the Big Easy airport.
So at the rescheduled 9:30 meeting just 30 minutes after arriving at the hotel, which basically reduced the players to a mere snack before still having to adhere to their 11 p.m. curfew instead of a steak dinner, Phillips continued on his "no excuses" mantra he began in the face of those injuries for the opener.
"He told us, 'You're going to find out about yourselves,'" Romo said of Phillips' message at that meeting. "'Are you going to make excuses or overcome this?'"
They overcame this, and then overcame this and this - whatever was presented to them - during what turned out to be an afternoon at the Improv.
Second City beware.