Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said the team is trying to figure out the process behind Tony Romo’s clocking of the ball Sunday against Arizona following Dez Bryant’s catch to the 31-yard line.
Bryant made his catch with 26 seconds left. The Cowboys, with two time outs, elected not to stop the clock and instead went to the line of scrimmage. Romo spiked the ball and stopped the clock.
Garrett said he was prepared to call time out with four seconds left to give Dan Bailey a try at a 49-yard field goal to win the game.
But asked whether he told Romo to clock the ball, Garrett said, “I don’t have a great answer for you on that.”
Asked to explain how he would not have an answer for that question, Garrett said, “Again, we’re just working through that situation to be honest with you. We’re talking timeout. He was getting them to the line of scrimmage and obviously when he got them to the line of scrimmage, the conversation we had going in was to clock the ball.”
Then, Garrett was asked if the Cowboys knew before the play whether they were going to call time out or clock the ball following a completion.
Garrett said, “The biggest thing we were trying to do at that point was recognize where the ball was. He caught the ball on the 30-yard line. We kind of looked at each other and said, ‘Hey, he’s in field-goal range. Boom! What do we got here?’ Tony is getting to the line, which is what he’s taught to do – always be ready to get the team to the line of scrimmage. He realizes that we have a first down in that situation and we look at each other and say, ‘Let’s run it down. He’s in range. Let’s give him a chance to kick the game-winner.’ ”
Garrett was then asked, so why bother clocking the ball at all? Why not just stop the clock with a time out?
We would have called a timeout from the sidelines at 4 seconds. But Tony had them at the line of scrimmage and he clocked it before that. I think he ended up clocking it at six or seven.”
-- Carlos Mendez