Saturday, June 15, 2013

America's Team? Rob Ryan Overrated? Romo and more...

Ok, so my last blog I felt was a success, not many views yet, but that's okay with me.  I mentioned in that blog that I would hit on the term "America's Team" in the near future, so let's go ahead and start this post off with that.  This is a paraphrased version of the story as I know it.  I don't necessarily agree with it being Dallas, but I won't dispute it.

In the 60's or 70's NFL Films would do highlight reels of each team, as a way of pumping up the fans and getting the fan base of the NFL to grow.  They would come up with catchy names for the films, such as "The Steel Curtain" for the Steelers and other mantra's for various teams.  They got the idea to name one of these films "America's Team" but they didn't know which team should have that labeled as their film.  A member of NFL Films called various teams to see who wanted it, I believe the teams were the Chiefs, Steelers, NY Football Giants, and one other team, other than Dallas.  Dallas got the last call as I recall and Tex Schramm jumped at the opportunity for the publicity.  Here is the first bit from Wikipedia about this.

The term "America's Team" is a popular nickname in the United States that refers to the Dallas Cowboys in the National Football League. The nickname originated with the team's 1978 highlight film, where the narrator opens with the following introduction:
They appear on television so often that their faces are as familiar to the public as presidents and movie stars. They are the Dallas Cowboys, "America's Team".

That's how the name came about, if people and media had just "ignored it" like many things in sports, then we wouldn't be discussing it today.  The bottom line to me is that nobody else stepped up with the moxy or confidence to wear the name like the Cowboys have done.  It takes a lot of gall to say you're America's anything, much less their team.  The Atlanta Braves, New York Yankees, Buffalo Bills and others have tried to don the name "America's Team" but it's only ever stuck with one team, the Dallas Cowboys.  In this case, if the glove doesn't fit, you must quit.  This glove only fits the Cowboys.

The next thing I wanted to hit on was something that's bugged me ever since Dallas made the mistake of hiring Rob Ryan.  To me, this guy is totally over rated.  I've compiled some stats on him that I've posted a link to below based on defenses he's coached and their league rank.  Bottom line, this guy has never, I repeat, NEVER been the defensive coordinator on a team in the playoffs... did you catch that... NEVER... playoffs and this guy have never met.  The best a team has finished with Rob Ryan as Defensive Coordinator is 8-8, the past two seasons in Dallas where the Cowboys finished 8-8 and both seasons could have been 9-7 or better had the defense held up in week 17.

Here's a link to the stats which I pulled from

I feel bad that the Saints have this guy, but at least for his and their sake, they usually make the playoff's based off of Drew Brees/Sean Payton and that offense, not a defense. 

Now, onto Tony Romo, yes, this blog has been full of Cowboys information, both past and present.  Tony Romo signed a $108M contract this off-season, it was an extension and the new "total" is 108 million dollars over the course of the next 7 years.  I don't have a problem with the contract, I have a problem with the owner Jerry Jones coming out and saying that with this deal, Romo has to put in "Manning-Type Time" referring to Peyton Manning and the insane amount of time he puts into the film room and game planning for his team.  The problem lies in that comment, you don't need to make that public.  If he hasn't put in the time previously, then maybe nobody came to him and said, "Hey man, you're doing a great job, but imagine if you put in say 10% more time around here."  I don't care who you are or what you do for a living, the bottom line is this, if you don't own the business you're working for, you put in as much time as is asked of you.  You make $20M a year, that's awesome, but I bet you still get away from work and spend time at home with family/friends as much as you can.  Same for these players.  Want to know why they go on NFL Network or ESPN and do interviews?  It's a break from the monotony of doing the same drills all day long, sitting in the film room and watching their own mistakes.  I think that the only one at fault here is the head coaches that Romo has had along the way and Jerry Jones himself.  Romo almost has every Dallas Cowboys passing record, single season, game, and career, he's obviously done something right.  Bill Parcells/Sean Payton, Wade Phillips/Jason Garrett, and now Jason Garrett/Bill Callahan have been his head coaches/offensive coordinators since he was signed as an undrafted free agent.  Now, almost a decade after his first start, someone picks up on a notion that Romo hasn't put in Manning type time, I find that to be a load of garbage.  I'm not at Valley Ranch, I do watch as much NFL news as I can, but I think this team needs better strength and conditioning to keep players healthy.  They need to quit having a rotating door at defensive coordinator.  This team needs consistency starting with the coaches and trainers and have that trickle down into the players.  Health has been an issue, so has poor drafts.  If you can "find" guys like Tony Romo and Miles Austin undrafted, but you can't draft players better than guys that the ENTIRE NFL passed on, something needs to be done in the scouting department.  Yes, the Cowboys drafts over the past few years have shined light on some great picks, Dez Bryant, Sean Lee, Bruce Carter, Tyran Smith, DeMarco Murray (when healthy) are prime examples of this, but you can't settle for this.  The 2013 draft was riddled with mistakes starting with a clear blindness for what this team needs.  Terrance Williams and Gavin Escobar were solid choices, Travis Frederick over Eric Reid or Shariff Floyd was embarrassing.  Nothing against Travis Frederick, but there were 77 picks between him and the next center taken off the board, he still would have been there had the team traded back again.  These poor decisions should keep Dallas fans complaining about Jerry being a poor GM, guess that's one way to stay in the limelight.

The last thing I wanted to touch on in this blog isn't NFL related, it's actually for the 3 major sports not called the NFL.  To the NBA, MLB, and NHL:  Please see the NFL's example on profit sharing amongst clubs and how to effectively use the salary cap.  Yes there are players in the NFL overpaid, see the Dallas Cowboys and Doug Free's previous contract for that example, but the entire team has to fit under 'X' dollars for the year.  The NBA and MLB especially feel as though the championship goes to the highest bidder.  The best thing about the NFL is that every year all 32 teams have a shot at the title, some have better odds based on work done in the past years through the draft or free agency, but all 32 teams compete and are in the same market because of the profit sharing and salary cap. 

That's enough of my rantings for today, I hope you've enjoyed and please leave comments on how I can make the blog better. 

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