During Sunday’s 29-24 loss to the New York Giants, the Cowboys might have played their best and worst offensive football of the season.
After three Tony Romo interceptions turned into a 23-0 New York Giants lead at Cowboys Stadium, the Cowboys rallied to pull ahead 24-23 with 3:43 left in the third quarter.
Between early in the second quarter and late in the third, the Cowboys scored on four-of-five possessions. The only possession that did not end with a score came with 13 seconds remaining before halftime and Romo kneeled out the clock.
We’ve questioned Garrett’s end-game play calling already this week – not running the ball to pick up a first down against a six-man box – and he said in his press conference Thursday the Cowboys‘ offense will probably be more balanced in the coming weeks.
According to Romo, he was pleased with the type of offense that Jason Garrett called to get Dallas back in the game.
“We really did a lot of things that I liked,” Romo said Wednesday on a conference call with media members in Atlanta. “I’m pushing coach to kind of get the offense more in that mode a little bit, which is nice. But styles make fights sometimes so we’ll look at different opponents and see different things.”
So, what did Romo like?
During those four drives, Romo was 17-of-23 passing for 252 yards and a touchdown. He also added a one-yard rushing score.
Of Romo’s 23 throws, he targeted Jason Witten 10 times and Miles Austin seven times. Dez Bryant had three passes thrown in his direction, John Phillips had two and James Hanna had one. With the Cowboys attempting to battle back from a four-score deficit, they only ran seven times on those four possessions, which included a Felix Jones four-yard touchdown.
Of Romo’s 17 completions, seven went for gains of 14 or more yards. Of his six incomplete passes, four came on deep throws.
If Garrett follows a similar gameplan Sunday night in Atlanta, Witten and Austin should be prepared to catch a lot of passes.
However, judging by what Garrett said Thursday, expect the Cowboys to be much more balanced than they were during those four drives.
“I just think we were efficient throwing the football,” Garrett said. “Obviously, Tony as the quarterback, appreciates that. We were able to throw the ball a lot of different ways against them and throw it to different guys and move the ball pretty consistently throughout the ballgame.
“But, at the same time, we got to be able to run the ball. We have to run the ball better than we did the other day and be a more balanced offense. We’ll continue to strive to do that well.”
Editors Note: Kevin Patra of NFL.com contributed to this post.