News: SI Banks: After last season's failures, Romo slays MetLife's demons in opener

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  1. WoodysGirl

    WoodysGirl U.N.I.T.Y Staff Member

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    Don Banks

    Posted: Thursday September 6, 2012 2:57AM ; Updated: Thursday September 6, 2012 11:24AM

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Could you blame Tony Romo if he didn't want to come back here? After those bookend disasters that began and ended the 2011 Dallas season at MetLife Stadium?

    First came the demoralizing 27-24 loss to the Jets in last year's opener on Sunday night, the game Romo gift-wrapped and gave away in the fourth quarter, setting the tone for a team that would go on to lose five games in which they led in the final 15 minutes, including three by at least double-digit advantages.

    And then, in the final chapter of last season's ride on the Romo-coaster, that desultory 31-14 loss to the Giants in Week 17, which eliminated the 8-8 Cowboys and sent the New Yorkers on to the playoffs at 9-7, a launching point they used to their great benefit and glory.

    Make no mistake, this first night of the 2012 NFL season was a huge litmus test for the hotly debated Dallas quarterback. He needed to confront the recent demons that have haunted him in this stadium and against these Giants, and he needed to prove that his third trip here in the span of a mere 17 regular-season games would be the charm. All that hung in the balance was the Cowboys' sense of self-respect in an NFC East rivalry that had grown lopsided of late, and perhaps Romo finally taking a vital step in erasing his reputation for not being able to win the biggest games, or get it done in crunch time.

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