First off, love the write-up as usual CS. Really appreciate you finding the time.
It seems like a bit of a perfect storm that is neutralizing Romo.
As counter-intuitive as it seems I've been thinking that one of this team's greatest weaknesses could be WR. You can't have one guy untrustable and another who keeps letting the ball into his pads to catch the ball - see Chicago INT and last week on 3rd down, settling for the FG.
That tiny little sample of running ability vs Baltimore with Costa has certainly had me intrigued. I want Costa back as much as I want Murray back. And I haven't gone back to focus on him but it has seemed that Free has been stabilizing and to some degree the pass protection overall. Much better than it was to start the season.
I can't blame Romo for coming apart a bit. What more could be piled on this guy's back? Makeshift line, no running game, and receivers who can't be trusted. If Romo is protecting himself a bit, I understand. If Romo is asking whether he WANTS to re-sign here, I understand.
You can say that when we get everyone back we'll be fine. But how long will everyone stay back? Murray is a great talent but we need another one just like him. Felix shows glimpses of that, but always ultimately disappoints. We can't simply fold-up when a Murray or Costa goes down if we're also compromised at WR.
The team is in a scary spot with its offense as crippled as it is. Even with the defense playing well we don't get turnovers at this point. So we see this choice being made to pull in the O's wings cause we can't risk more stupid turnovers but then discontent when like the Atlanta game we score few points cause we're playing it safe. In the end I think they'll go back AGAIN and ask Romo to find a way to push the envelope to make the offense explosive without a running game, with compromised WR's and shaky pass protection because there is more hope in that than thinking we can win consistently scoring in the teens and low 20's.