Pinky Finger Fallout
Posted Oct. 15 at 04:19 AM
When Tony Romo broke his finger in overtime against the Cardinals, it meant Dallas will spend about three games without their star signal-caller. But the same way a butterfly flapping its wings in Kansas affects an earthquake in Siberia (or however that silly phrase goes), that one little injury affects many people. Aside from Romo, the injury impacts these folks as well:
Owens and Witten (hurts). Obviously, receivers are impacted by their quarterback. Ask Bobby Engram. Hard to see how Brad Johnson does anything but hurt these guys.
Marion Barber (helps). Barber wanted to be a feature back, right? Injuries to Romo and Felix Jones will give him his shot. It's funny that while everyone wondered about his durability, he's been healthy while everyone around him falls apart.
Cowboys defense (hurts). If you were hoping this unit would eventually live up to elite expectations, the job got a little harder. A less-effective offense means less rest between possessions and a lot more pressure to keep games close.
Rams players (helps). With a weakened Cowboys offense, St.Louis might not be playing from behind all game. They might actually get to execute a game plan, giving their best players a chance to perform.
Fantasy teams owning Philadelphia Eagles players (helps). Suddenly, 3-3 doesn't look so bad anymore. This team won't be playing out the string anytime soon. Throw in an unexpected Giants loss, and the Iggles have every reason to think a division title is within reach.
Last-place fantasy teams (hurts). You know owners are going to pick up ancient Brad Johnson, hoping to either nab a starter or fleece the Romo owner. Neither will pan out, of course, leaving them deeper in last place.
Fantasy teams just above last place (helps). These guys win because they get the better pickups while lower teams waste their pick on Brad Johnson. Some move up the rankings while they laugh at the teams who blew their waiver wire choice.
Mike Martz (helps). If the Cowboys falter, they could go on a losing streak and continue it in Washington after the bye. That means Texas Stadium could be quieter and more welcoming for an opponent when the 49ers come to town in week 12. Martz' "genius" reputation is running on fumes. He needs any advantage he can get.
Dallas area economy (hurts). Losing a shot at a home playoff game would be costly to the area at a time when people are already tightening their budgets.
Roy Williams (helped already). You don't think Jerry Jones would have overpaid for Williams if he wasn't in panic mode, do you? That trade was so lopsided, if it occurred in your fantasy league the Commissioner would have vetoed it.
Bill Cowher (helps). Wade Phillips can't afford a mediocre season and early playoff exit. If either happens, Cowher will have another suitor to lure him out of retirement. And as you saw with Williams, Jerry Jones pays whatever it takes to get what he wants.
NFL TV ratings (hurts). Who wants to watch the Titans dismantle a pathetic Lions team on Thanksgiving? How about a mediocre Cowboys team facing the Seahawks? NFL ratings will crash that Thursday, driving families toward yet another holiday airing of "Home Alone."
Macaulay Culkin (helps). See above.
Manchester United Soccer Club fans (helps). Dallas' missteps could pave the way for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to nab another home playoff game, which gives the Glazers more cash to help pay the enormous debt they incurred to take over the elite soccer club. They don't have to raise ticket prices as much next year, saving hooligans hard-earned pounds that can be spent on ale and bail.
Barack Obama/John McCain (undecided). The election winner can often be predicted by whether or not Washington wins its last home game before the election. With a home game against Dallas looming after the bye, the team might look past its Nov. 3 opponent-- Pittsburgh-- and look to bury the poor Cowboys in week 11. If they suffer a letdown (as they did against the Rams this past weekend), a loss means success for Obama. But if they focus on the task at hand and defeat the Steelers, that's good news for McCain.
Nouri al-Maliki (undecided). Clearly, Iraq's Prime Minister has a lot riding on Romo's pinky. McCain favors a more patient approach, relying on the advice of Gen. David Petraeus and generally avoiding timelines or benchmarks. Obama, on the other hand, supports a phased withdrawal of US forces over a period of several months. The election winner will greatly impact the tone takes with the Iraqi government, so Washington's game preparations against the Steelers could determine how it plays out.
Larry Hagman, Linda Gray, Patrick Duffy (hurts). Less interest in the slumping Cowboys (and a damaged local economy) means fewer tickets sold to the "Dallas" reunion scheduled for November. Hagman's J.R. Ewing character would probably plot to destroy the other division rivals, but Duffy's Bobby would just hope it's all a dream.
George A. Romero (helps). Less interest in the "Dallas" reunion means more interest in the Zombiefest event to be scheduled in Pennsylvania later this month. Held at the Monroeville Mall (location of Romero's "Dawn of the Dead"), happy Steelers and Eagles fans will be in lighter spirits and eager to enjoy the festivities.
I may have missed a few people, but let's hope Romo recovers soon. And you don't even want to know what happens if Felix Jones misses significant time. Good luck this week.
Youtube Clip of the Week: Don't shed any tears for Romo. Let this guy do it instead. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RRHh_qvo1f8&feature=related
Bonus Clip: Trailer for one of the best movies ever. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PpuNE1cX03c
You can reach Michael Murillo at email@example.com.
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