Yesterday’s timeout fiasco ended up costing the Dallas Cowboys a victory over the Phoenix Cardinals.
And for that I’m thankful.
The Cowboys owed a sacrifice to the timeout gods, and now the team is all square in the fate department. On to the Super Bowl!
Coach Jason Garrett called a timeout just before kicker Dan Bailey kicked the winning field goal at the end of regulation in yesterday’s game. Bailey had to kick again. He missed, the game went into overtime, the Cards won the toss, and then won the game.
However, here we are on Monday with the Cowboys still atop their division in first place, feeling good about the rest of their season, poised to play the division rival New York Giants twice in the coming weeks, and controlling our own destiny.
Now think back to three weeks ago. Remember when the Cowboys beat the Redskins on a field goal in overtime even though quarterback Tony Romo tried in vain to call a timeout just before the play? The Cowboys were out of timeouts. Romo’s brain fart, according to numerous reports the following day, should have resulted in a 15-yard penalty. That would have increased Bailey’s kick to 54 yards, and he probably would have missed the field goal.
Romo would have been dead meat if that happened. Tarred and feathered. Crucified.
Prior to the Redskins game, Romo was already being lambasted for mental meltdowns and boneheaded miscues. Romo was dubbed a choke artist, a head case, and a failed leader.
The Cowboys stumbled into the Redskins game with a 5-4 record. If Romo would have been penalized for calling that timeout, the Cowboys might have lost that game, fans would have been howling, critics would be calling for Romo’s head, and the team would have been reeling at 5-5 and feeling cursed.
Instead, the timeout gods smiled down on Romo and the Cowboys, the referees ignored Romo’s attempted timeout, and the Cowboys beat the Redskins and found themselves with a ton of momentum, good will, local support, and a 6-4 record that would soon become a 7-4 record after beating Miami the following week.
The timeout gods saved our season back then. Now we’re in a much better position to lose a game after a boneheaded call.
We owed the timeout gods. Big time. Yesterday the gods collected, causing Garrett to ice his own kicker and lose the game. But at least destiny’s ledger is now balanced. We’re paid in full and remain in first place.
I’ve been reading up on that Nov. 21 Redskins game. It appears that Romo’s attempt to call a timeout when the team was out of timeouts is not a 15-yard penalty after all. Referees simply ignore attempted timeouts once a team is out of them.
So the timeout gods did not really smile down on us against the Redskins. Which means we didn’t owe the gods diddly squat. And now it’s clear that yesterday’s loss served no purpose at all.