For coach Jason Garrett getting the win against the Panthers on Sunday was all that mattered and he made apologies for how the Cowboys got it done or the so-called conservative play calling late in the game.
Never mind that he was ultimately putting the game in the hands of a Cowboys defense that had given up a 75-yard touchdown drive earlier in the fourth quarter, putting Carolina up 14-13.
A dropped touchdown pass by receiver Dez Bryant set up a third and 9 at the Carolina 15 yard line at the 3:39 mark. The Cowboys called timeout and decided to run Phillip Tanner up the middle. He gained five yards.
Romo, who was an efficient 24 of 34 for 227 yards with a touchdown in the game, wanted to throw.
"Well, you always want to throw the ball as a quarterback," Romo said. "I think, in that situation, they played a really soft coverage, just Tampa 2, really soft, so it's what we did."
Garrett wanted to preserve the opportunity for the go-ahead field goal and not risk a turnover.
"I thought Tony handled that well. It's one of those plays you can hit, you see it every week in the National Football League, you get in there and if you get it blocked right and get it to the second level it really gives you a chance to score, so I wanted to preserve the opportunity there and kick that field goal and make it a two-(point) game. I thought our guys handed it well."
Owner Jerry Jones called it conservative. But again the result was the only thing that mattered to him.
"I thought that was a conservative way (to go)," Jones said. "That was a conservative call. But the big thing is, should we be having a conservative call? And I can make you a good case in point that it called for that. We wanted, we certainly wanted points. That’s for sure. Had to have it."Clarence Hill