The bad news is that it keeps happening.
Two of the Cowboys’ four losses this season have been by a point. A third was on a final-play field goal against the Denver Broncos after a late Tony Romo interception. Last year they lost in overtime against the New Orleans Saints. Dan Bailey missed a potential game-winner at Baltimore last year. In 2011 they had the crushing losses in back-to-back weeks against the Arizona Cardinals (icing the kicker) and New York Giants (Jason Pierre-Paul’s blocked field goal).
“Our football team has been through this,” Romo said. “Tough loss, have to be able to put it behind you and come right back. It’s not going to happen (Sunday). It will happen (Monday) after guys get a chance to review the tape, find out what we could have done better and go back to work. What you do is you grab a bunch of people and put them on your football team, who have the ability to mentally understand that there are good games and bad, that you’re going to play well, you’re not going to play as well. You’ve got to come back next week and be at your best. That will start during practice. If you let it hang over it will creep into the season as it gets later. Our football team has a bunch of guys, in my opinion, who care about each other, stick together and are competitive and mentally tough individuals who will stick together and go back to work and will get better. It’s the only approach you can take.”
Since 2010 only the Miami Dolphins have had more losses by three points or fewer (13) than the Cowboys (11).
“It’s never easy to lose,” defensive tackle Nick Hayden said. “No one likes losing. It’s the NFL. You’ve got to move on and prepare for the next one.”
The next one is at AT&T Stadium against the Minnesota Vikings, but it sounds so much easier to say than to actually do, despite Jason Garrett’s one-day-at-at-time proclamations. At some point these losses have to haunt and lead to doubt when they are in these situations time and time again.
“I’m sure that has happened in the past, but I think this football team is different than four, five, six years ago,” Romo said. “You’ve got to try and get rid of that. You win, you lose. You go look at it, you get better from it and then you wash it away and go right to the next game. That’s the best approach you can take in the National Football League and gives you the best chance to succeed each week. You can’t get too high and you can’t get too low. I mean, it’s moments like this are the emotional times.”