Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Wednesday Musings - Romo vs Blitz

As you know, Wednesday is my "day of rest" in the football week. So, this blog entry, while lengthy, will be mostly because my intern, TC, contributes 3,000 words (and some eye-catching photos) to this blog as he takes apart the Cowboys "Drive of the Week" with precision and detail.

Before we get to that, and an update on our weekly projects, let me cover two quick items:

Yesterday on the radio, Todd Archer of the DMN and now the Ticket, joined our show and we started talking about the Cowboys "blitz allergy". When opponents blitz in the last few seasons, it is my premise that Romo and Garrett are actually worse now, than when Romo was a rookie.

Is it true?

Archer ran the numbers on his blog , here are his findings:

YearCom-AttYardsTDsINTsSacksFumFDsQB Rat

Table Tutorial

So what do these numbers show us? I believe it shows us that in 2007, Tony Romo burned the defenses enough that they were scared to blitz. In 16 starts in 2007, they blitzed him about 9 times a game. In 2008, that number jumped to nearly 13 blitzes a game. And in 2009, we are at about 12 blitzes a game.

And given how little Carolina and Tampa blitzed, I can only imagine that that number is going to creep up and up until the Cowboys realize how to deal with it again. If Romo is a 90+ QB Rating QB overall, that tells us something. Look at the difference between his rating w/ blitz and without through the years:

Yearw/BlitzNo BlitzOverall

Table Tutorial

Hmmm. Well, in '06 and '08, he was much better when he wasn't blitzed. In '07 he made the entire league pay for daring to blitz him. And in '09? Well, in 2009, he has been mediocre no matter how you slice the numbers.

Perhaps, my theory is not completely founded in fact. If he is just as mediocre when you don't send a blitz, perhaps teams will not try to blitz his doors off. The only reason to send a blitz is because he is killing you if you don't. He is not doing that at all so far this year.

NFL Email of the Week

From: kft2247
Sent: 10/2/2009 10:36:08 A.M.
Subj: Think the Cowboys miss Roy Williams (the Safety)

Hey Bob - think the Cowboys are still glad they let Roy Williams get away? From my vantage point, the Cowboys Pass D is as bad or worse than when Roy Williams roamed in the secondary. And don't look now, but the "old" Roy Williams (or the one the Cowboys couldn't utilize properly) is making hay up in Cincinnatti.

Oh and based on the way the "other" Roy Williams (the WR) has performed in Dallas, I think it is time to begin referring to him again as The Fake Roy Williams "TFRW". Just a thought.

Here are a couple youtube's for your viewing pleasure:

P1 Kyle

My Response to Kyle:

I think for every year of Roy's career he has made some "highlight film" plays. It is the "lowlight plays" that have been his nemesis. I believe the Cowboys did the right thing. I certainly have not studied his misses with the Bengals, but our sample size in Dallas was enough to indicate he could use a change in scenery.

I enjoy following the further adventures of Greg Ellis, Roy Williams, Terrell Owens, and Tank Johnson, but I remember December too vividly to forget that they were all here (Roy was in a cast, though) for that Cowboys mess.

The Cowboys have made some real personnel blunders over the years, but the only guy I second guess is Greg Ellis.

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