Or so says Cedric Golden of Statesman.com:
Leaders don’t develop. They are born. It’s something in the DNA. You either have it, or you don’t. After showing little interest in leadership his first couple of seasons, Romo is talking about becoming a better leader now. In this case, talk isn’t cheap — Romo signed a $67.5 million contract extension during the season — but it’s still just talk.
He’s singing a different tune from the one he sang after the 44-6 drubbing at Philadelphia, which dropped his career record as a starter in December to 5-8. Minutes after his team collapsed on the field, he collapsed in the shower from a rib injury, then offered this explanation of how he dealt with the loss:
“If this is the worst thing that ever happens to me,” Romo said, “then I’ll have lived a pretty good life.”
He might as well have been one of those talentless clowns who audition for “American Idol.” It was comical and hurt the ears.
That’s what separates Romo from guys such as Aikman, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. They live the game. Losses eat at their intestines for entire offseasons. Romo’s comments suggested he was already over the loss.
Aikman offered up no excuses when the Cowboys went 1-15 with him as the starter. And he didn’t morph into a superhero when the Cowboys were winning Super Bowls. He was the same hard-playing, accountable dude during good times and bad times. Romo’s not Aikman. Not even close. And while it’s probably not fair to compare the two, Romo opened up the door when he played the leadership card.
Even a defensive player like Ray Lewis, who had off-field problems early in his career, is 10 times the leader Romo is. He doesn’t have to make any pronouncements about leadership, because his actions make it clear who’s running things in the Baltimore Ravens’ locker room.
Ray Lewis is 10 times the leader Tony Romo is? Gee, way to make a prophetic statement there, Cedric.
He may never be the guy that runs up and down the sidelines like Tim Tebow does or have the gonads to get into the face of his offensive linemen on the bench like Tom Brady, but Romo can lead by example. If he wins, his teammates will follow because in the end, winning speaks louder than any sideline speech that he can give.
Will he ever be Brady, Lewis or Aikman in terms of being a leader? Probably not, but then again, it takes a special man to lead like those guys do/did. What Romo can do is focus more in practice, be more dedicated to the game that has treated him very well the past couple years and start producing in December. If he does those things, people will take notice.