ARLINGTON — It was Tony Romo’s Monday night nightmare, low-lighted by an ongoing display of quarterbacking malfunctions that sunk him, sunk the Cowboys and considering what’s immediately ahead on the schedule, probably also Titanic-ed the season.
Welcome to October.
December is where the Cowboys usually go to die, but this sucker may be over by Halloween. Jerry Jones, who as of this week is now selling women’s panties at the Big Yard, at least learned the answer to this question:
What exactly is Victoria’s Secret?
Easy answer. Victoria knew. Knew all along the Cowboys belonged in the Lingerie League.
The Chicago Bears enjoyed an MNF road breeze, winning by 34-18, in what will rank as Romo’s most despicable home-field performance ever in this venue, and makes it an early fire-at-will open season for the army of local Romo haters.
Sure, Tony had his helpers in this debacle.
Dez Bryant, come on down. Way down.
Also throw in a Cowboys defense that helped Bears quarterback Jay Cutler restore his tattered reputation by a lack of pressure, despite a Chicago offensive line every bit as much maligned as the Cowboys’ offensive line.
But the bottom line is still a greasy smudge on Romo’s permanent record, and the bottom line showed two Bears defensive touchdowns off a Romo pick and a Romo fumble (ruled an interception), two missed receivers running open for touchdowns, and, overall, being tagged with five interceptions.
Chicago’s defense is respected, of course, but this, this was a start-to-finish evening of what could go wrong for the quarterback did go wrong for the quarterback.
In what actually started as a defensive struggle both ways, the Cowboys trailed 3-0 late in the second quarter when Romo attempted a short out route pass to Bryant. Somebody blew it, and afterward, coach Jason Garrett wouldn’t place blame.
But since Romo does know the plays, and who knows what Dez knows, let us guess, yes, Bryant screwed it up. The pass was picked off by Charles Tillman for an easy TD, and a 10-0 lead. Dez had run upfield. Romo threw short.
Romo, however, came back with a good TD drive before halftime, and it was anybody’s ballgame with a 10-7 intermission score.
The second half, however, was pathetic for the home team, with a Bears opening drive that featured Cutler operating in a rocking chair in whipping his offense to a quick touchdown. No blitz by Rob Ryan meant no chance for pressure.
Down 17-7, the meltdown began. Romo threw a pick that was in the hands of receiver Kevin Ogletree but appeared to be dislodged by a defender, resulting in a pop-up interception near the Bears’ goal line. That was a huge missed chance.
When the Cowboys’ defense got the ball right back on a Cutler fumble, Romo was grabbed by the Bears’ Henry Melton, free because guard Mackenzy Bernadeau blew a block, and a pop-up fumble/interception resulted.
Lance Briggs picked it out of mid-air and rambled 74 yards for a touchdown. A Cowboys scoring threat became a one-eighty disaster and the Bears were on their blowout way, leading 24-7.
Most disturbing, among many disturbing moments for Romo, was him missing a wide-open Bryant in the first half in what could have been a touchdown in a still scoreless game. And again in the second half, Romo missed a wide-open Miles Austin with what could have been a touchdown pass, cutting the lead to 24-14 with still 17 minutes to play.
This just in:
The woulda, shoulda, couldas don’t count.
What does count is the Cowboys crashed to a 2-2 record, and now have a long, long wait through the bye week before attempting to regroup. That regrouping will coincide with the season’s toughest stretch of schedule.
Four of the next five games are on the road, including at the Ravens, at Carolina, then the Giants here a few days before Halloween, followed by at Atlanta and at Philly.
A show of hands please from those local fools who attempted to "style-point" the home debut win last week over Tampa Bay.
The Cowboys aren’t good enough to downgrade any kind of win.
Due to the shaky state of the Bears’ offense, Monday night was as good a chance for a victory as the Cowboys will have between now and almost Thanksgiving.
And then Romo crashed and burned.
And then the flames started building around the entire season.
Jerry still has women’s panties to sell.
Bring on the lingerie.
The Dallas Cowboys went 8-8 last year and missed the playoffs for the sixth time in the last decade. Yet the team set new highs in revenue and operating profit, and this month, it was the first NFL franchise to be valued at more than $2 billion. According to Forbes magazine, the Cowboys are worth roughly twice as much as teams in the middle of the pack.
Is winning overrated?
Jerry Jones would blanch at the suggestion, because he’s as much a football fan as owner and general manager. The Cowboys also won a string of earlier titles, both before Jones and with him, that helped establish the brand around the globe.
Win or lose, the Cowboys remain a glamour team and TV favorite, and this week, the national spotlight returns to Arlington for Monday Night Football. Fans always focus on what happens on the field, but there’s a business game within the game, and that’s where the Cowboys are world beaters.
Jones paid $140 million for the team in 1989, and it’s valued at $2.1 billion today. Every franchise in the National Football League has become richer in the past generation, thanks to a string of record-setting broadcast contracts. Still, the Cowboys stand apart, and in the last year alone, the team’s value rose 14 percent.
Cowboys Stadium is difference maker No. 1, so it’s fitting that it usually gets a lot of airtime during broadcasts. Last year, the Cowboys led the league in attendance and averaged about 6,000 standing room tickets per game. According to Stats LLC, attendance exceeded stadium capacity by 7 percent, second highest in the league by that measure of popularity.
With more fans staying home and watching the NFL on big, high-definition televisions, Cowboys games remain the place to be. The stadium’s luxuries are impressive, from the field boxes to the art collection to the giant video board. And it keeps making news, announcing that a Victoria’s Secret shop will open Monday, with the help of lingerie models.
The big turnout and TV attention keep corporate sponsors happy. AT&T, Bank of America, Dr Pepper, Ford, Miller Beer and Pepsi help generate $80 million a year in sponsor revenue, Forbes reports. And those dollars aren’t shared the way that broadcast rights and gate receipts are split among the league’s 32 teams.
Jones sometimes primes the pump by serving as the ultimate pitchman, and he has surprising crossover appeal. He’s been making national TV commercials since the 1990s. (Remember the Pizza Hut ad with Deion Sanders after he signed the player to a huge contract? Jones asks if he wants $15 million or $20 million, and Sanders says, “Both” — and Jones just shrugs.)
Ads for Papa John’s pizza have Jones doing rap songs and hip-hop dances, and serve as another example of how the Cowboys combine national and local campaigns — and boost their brand and their partners’ at the same time. Jones even has an ownership stake in the pizza chain, and he’s replicated the same model with Dunkin’ Donuts.
“It’s extraordinary how the Cowboys convert publicity into revenue,” said Marc Ganis, president of Sportscorp Ltd., a consulting firm in Chicago.
He compares Jones to the late George Steinbrenner, the New York Yankees owner who was as famous as his players and appeared in TV commercials, too. Celebrity CEOs don’t get any more high profile, and Jones and the Cowboys have an additional advantage: The NFL’s salary cap keeps the biggest expense — player payroll — under control.
When the Cowboys leverage their brand (or Jones) with advertisers, revenue gains quickly hit the bottom line. Last season, the Cowboys’ operating income was $227 million, up from $9 million the year before they moved into the new stadium. Revenue increased almost 80 percent during the same time.
The Cowboys and most NFL teams are private businesses that don’t report financial results. Forbes has long estimated the numbers for pro sports teams, and the reports are widely respected.
Building the brand
When Jones bought the team, the Cowboys were laggards, but the franchise was a great name in a big, growing market. And the NFL’s popularity was about to explode, boosted by new broadcast deals. Jones was one of the ringleaders who pushed for more competitive bidding, which brought Fox into the fold and eventually led to more NFL games on more networks.
While that grew the pie for everyone, Jones was also growing a separate revenue stream. He sold sponsorships at the old Texas Stadium that often conflicted with the official league-wide sponsors. He signed contracts with Nike when the league had a separate apparel deal. Today the Cowboys have their own merchandising outfit and a concessions company with the Yankees. Its Legends Premium Sales unit is handling suite and ticket sales for the San Francisco 49ers’ new stadium.
Jones doubled his building budget on Cowboys Stadium to $1.2 billion, and he paid the extra, not Arlington taxpayers. He wanted an attraction that wouldn’t be eclipsed a few years later.
MetLife Stadium, which opened in 2010 in New Jersey and had a higher price tag, isn’t nearly as compelling — or valuable.
“The Cowboys had the better vision and execution,” Ganis said. “Management counts.”
The New York Giants play in MetLife, and they won the Super Bowl last year. They’re No. 4 on the Forbes list of NFL teams — and still trail the Cowboys’ value by $632 million. That’s a lead that looks safe.
Coming Tomorrow: Most NFL franchises have sold the naming rights to their stadiums. Not the Cowboys. Why America’s Team is leaving money on the table.
PINK PROFITGATE–OVER REACTION: Dallas Cowboys remain relevant even without the wins; Mac Engel critical of Jerry Jones’ money making flair
One week after the Dallas Cowboys re-unveiled the five banners that celebrate their glorious Super Bowl past, they will open a store that says everything you need to know about what they are today.
Every single time we think the Dallas Cowboys are returning to their core values of winning football as the primary means to make more money, they remind us a "W" is no longer as vital as the $.
On Monday, a few hours before the Cowboys host the Bears, Cowboys Stadium will become the first professional sports arena to house a Victoria’s Secret store.
Next up: The Gap, Starbucks, Best Buy and Frederick’s of Hollywood.
This is a joke that isn’t a joke.
The Cowboys should not be providing any potential punch lines that aid in questioning their toughness or suggest that they — cough, cough — play like a bunch of girls.
The good news is that finally a fan can go to a Cowboys game, buy a Cowboys hat and a pair of Cowboys "Huddle Up" panties for $10.50. A pair of Dallas Cowboys underwear is far cheaper than a parking spot for a Dallas Cowboys game.
The bad news is that this Victoria’s Secret "PINK" store is only going to carry Dallas Cowboys-themed merchandise, including yoga bras, lace panties, T-shirts, sweatshirts and sweatpants.
Jerry Jones, if you are going to consummate this marriage between the Dallas Cowboys and Victoria’s Secret, you must go all in. With just a little cross marketing, there are far greater opportunities than just T-shirts and sweatshirts.
I can’t make these up: Victoria’s Secret offers "The Showstopper" bra, "Dream Angel" panties, "Dream Angel" perfect coverage bra and "Boy Shorts" panties. The pun possibilities are endless.
The franchise that was always so far in front of the professional sports curve remains that way because no team understands its current landscape better than the Cowboys.
The reason the Cowboys have those five Super Bowl banners is because, at that time, winning was the way to national relevance and revenue. You had to be good.
Former Cowboys president Tex Schramm believed the best money spent on marketing was on scouting.
The world is a much different place than the one Tex operated in, or even the one Jerry bought into.
The reason the Cowboys are today valued by Forbes at an NFL-high $2.1 billion is because they recognize and have fully exploited the reality that being relevant is as potentially lucrative as being good.
Look no further than Jerry’s recent comments regarding the replacement officials in the NFL. He thought it was good entertainment, and exciting, and it was. But "good" or "right" had no place in the conversation because quality did not matter.
In the entertainment world, and that’s what professional sports is, relevance serves as an effective impostor for quality.
If you can’t win, you must create other areas of interest to remain relevant, and more lucrative. No team loses and yet retains its relevance any better than the Cowboys.
In lieu of winning games, there may not be a better way of creating relevance in pro sports these days than girls who don’t wear a lot of clothes.
The franchise that changed the landscape of NFL sidelines by adding professional cheerleaders — officially combining sex and sports — now brings us Victoria’s Secret to a stadium. The Cowboys are the first, and you know they will not be the last.
Smack your head and curse Jerry if you must, and go ahead and laugh at the Victoria’s Secret Cowboys.
You can’t say Jerry Jones is Bengals owner Mike Brown and that he doesn’t care about winning. For Jerry, making a deal or making a ton of coin is akin to defeating the Redskins, Giants or Bears. It all brings the juice.
Today it is a Victoria’s Secret store and a cameo on the TV show The League. In a month or two, it will be a casino, or sponsoring a space station.
Until the Cowboys really win, they will be defined by their ability to always be relevant.
Ever since Jerry bought the team, the Dallas Cowboys have remained relevant because of their ability to win, the personalities of their players and their coaches, through tradition and now because of bra and panties.
Mac Engel | Ft. Worth Star-Telegram
EDITORS COMMENTS: Tex Schramm was no slouch when it came to marketing. Jerry Jones benefits from Tex’s foresight. Who do you think was in charge when the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders came into existence? Jerry’s no fool. He’s going to put money in his pocket when he has an opportunity … then, he’s going to sign players within the confines of the NFL salary cap. Jerry Jones has taken what Tex Schramm built (America’s Team and all that it encompasses) and ran with the ball (pardon the pun). I have no issue with whatever JJ does to enhance the venue. Cowboys Stadium is a gameday experience and showcase … utilized eight days (or nights) a year (plus playoffs and special events). Do whatever it takes to draw attention, make money, stay in the publics mind. The wins will come … just like they have five times in the past.
To question Jerry Jones’ desire and commitment to win is ridiculous … both at the bank, and on the field. The NFL and the Dallas Cowboys are about MORE than sports, it’s sports entertainment. We’re getting what we pay for. Ask fans in the other 31 NFL cities … who offers the best NFL experience in the country?
There have been two GM’s in Dallas Cowboys history. Tex made the block, and Jerry ran for the touchdown.
Never forget who we are … and what we are. Mostly, we’re dudes. Watching a game of grime and grind. If a hardworking guy takes his girl to the game, has a cold beer, sports a new hat and jersey, stands up – raises hell, and hooks her up with something (naughty or nice) from the Victoria’s Secret store. Who really benefits here? I say, it’s win-win. Let the games begin.
It might make the Dallas Cowboys the butt of jokes, but Jerry Jones will go pink for profit in his $1.2 billion football palace.
A Victoria’s Secret PINK store will open Monday at Cowboys Stadium, a first at a professional sports stadium or venue.
"We think it’s cute as a bug and very in place to show it and sell it out there," Jones said Friday on KRLD-FM.
Cowboys Stadium has pretty much everything Jerry Jones could imagine packing into a single building, but if there’s one thing it lacks, it’s a certain feminine touch. No longer.
The Cowboys sent out a news release promoting a ceremonial ribbon-cutting event that will take place a few hours before the Cowboys kick off against the Chicago Bears. Victoria’s Secret models Elsa Hosk and Jessica Hart will be among the dignitaries there along with Charlotte Anderson, Jones’ daughter and the Cowboys’ executive vice president for brand management.
According to the release, Victoria’s Secret PINK is a "fully articulated lifestyle collection for young women that include bras, panties, loungewear and sleepwear."
The Cowboys Stadium store, which will be located on the main concourse club area above Entry A, will sell Victoria’s Secret PINK merchandise that features the Cowboys’ name and star logo.
No need to wait ’til Monday Night to have your emblazon your crotch with the Cowboys Star. May I suggest the Jerry-approved lace trim thong panties? You can order them online right now.
RELATED: The Jerry Jones Show
ALTERNATE LINK: Click HERE to listen to the show (listed on the right column)
EDITORS COMMENT: You really SHOULD listen to this show. Always a few gems!
THE SECRETS OUT: Nachos, beer, jerseys,–and you can pick up some Victoria’s Secret at Cowboys Stadium, too
Only the Cowboys.
Only at Cowboys Stadium.
The team and lingerie titan Victoria’s Secret are teaming up with a store at the stadium. A ribbon-cutting is planned for 4 p.m. Monday, hours before the game against the Chicago Bears.
Here is the release from the team. It tells it all:
“The Dallas Cowboys and Victoria’s Secret PINK will hold a ceremonial ribbon cutting at the new Cowboys Stadium store located on the Main Concourse Club above Entry A.
“Victoria’s Secret models Elsa Hosk and Jessica Hart will join Charlotte Anderson, Dallas Cowboys Executive Vice President for Brand Management for the celebration and opening. Starting October 1st, 2012, Cowboys fans can shop the limited edition Victoria’s Secret PINK NFL Collection at the first ever PINK store in a professional sports stadium or arena.
“The Victoria’s Secret PINK Cowboys Collection includes an assortment of co-branded Victoria’s Secret PINK and Cowboys merchandise and is also available in Victoria’s Secret stores in the North Texas area. This unique line features VS PINK’s highly recognizable brand iconography outfitted with the names and logos of the Dallas Cowboys and will include tees, sweats, hoodies and tanks.
“Launched in 2004, Victoria’s Secret PINK is a fully articulated lifestyle collection for young women that include bras, panties, loungewear and sleepwear.”