NFL Power Rankings: After second loss, it's time for the Cowboys to go with Tony Romo

You know what Big D stands for in Dallas these days: Denial.

The Cowboys are in denial when it comes to their quarterback position. Yes, rookie Dak Prescott has had a sensational and unexpected season in leading the Cowboys to an 11-2 record, but there is no doubt in my mind that veteran Tony Romo would give the Cowboys the best chance to win a Super Bowl.

I've thought that all along, so don't sit here and say it's a knee-jerk reaction to what happened this past Sunday night when Prescott struggled and the Cowboys lost to the Giants. I always felt Romo should go back in when he was healthy enough to do so, but I also understood the thinking behind keeping Prescott in the lineup.

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Dallas was rolling, so why upset the chemistry and the winning? Now that's changed somewhat. The Cowboys lost to the Giants, which came after a struggle at Minnesota. In those two games, the Cowboys were 2-for-24 on third down. That's on the quarterback.

Against the Giants, Prescott was 17 of 37 for 168 yards and two interceptions, with a passer rating of 45.4. That's awful. Give credit to the Giants defense, but this is the window the Cowboys can use to put Romo back into the lineup.

No, it's the one they should use -- even if they've already come out and said it's not happening.

That whole idea that Romo wouldn't be 11-2 with this team is absurd. They might be undefeated. The talk that he would have been hurt again is also misguided. Nobody knows. And if he were to get hurt, then you go back to Prescott.

This should be Romo time. He anticipates throws better, which Prescott will improve on as he plays more, but it's not there yet for him the way it will be. He instead looks for wide-open guys all the time, which isn't the NFL way.

When Romo played 30 games in 2013 and 2014, he threw 65 touchdown passes. Many seem to forget that. Yes, he had two clavicle injuries that limited him in 2015, and a back injury this preseason, but he's healthy now. It should be his time.

This week the Cowboys, who fall to the second spot in my Power Rankings, play the Buccaneers with a defense that has been the best in the NFL the past five weeks. It's a challenge for Prescott. What if he struggles in this one? Then do they go to Romo?

If the Cowboys truly want to win a Super Bowl, Romo should be the guy. He's the better passer, and we all know this is a passing league -- no matter how well Ezekiel Elliott runs the football.

That run-heavy offense has averaged 12 points a game the past two weeks. That isn't winning a Super Bowl. The Dallas defense, while improved, isn't that good to handle a light scoring load.

So it's Romo time.

Or at least it should be.

Biggest Movers
7 Panthers
7 Chargers
Rk
Teams
 
Chg
Rcrd
1 Patriots As long as Tom Brady is chucking it around, they are the team to beat. Period. 111-5-0
2 Cowboys They have to be encouraged by the improved play of the defense. The pass rush will be key going forward. 110-6-0
3 Chiefs Are you a believer? It might be time for that. They are playing well. 112-4-0
4 Lions Matthew Stafford's injured finger can be an issue the rest of the way. It starts with a tough one at New York against the Giants. 36-10-0
5 Raiders They lost at Kansas City, which likely means they will travel the wild-card route. Derek Carr was bad that night, but he will rebound. 24-12-0
6 Seahawks That was just one of those days at Green Bay. They will win their last three and be a dangerous playoff team again. --10-6-0
7 Falcons They impressed against the Rams without Julio Jones. The defense is improving. 37-9-0
8 Giants The defense has made big strides since early in the season. The secondary is really playing well. --5-11-0
9 Broncos The Super Bowl champions are in big trouble now. They can't afford another loss. 46-10-0
10 Steelers They are getting on a roll. You can just feel it. This is a team nobody wants in the playoffs. 19-6-1
11 Buccaneers They've won five straight heading to a big game at Dallas this week against the Cowboys. Win that, and they will be a playoff team. 15-11-0
12 Ravens What happened to the defense in New England? The loss of Jimmy Smith could be big to the defense. 310-6-0
13 Dolphins They must play without Ryan Tannehill the rest of the regular season after his knee injury. It's all Matt Moore now. --7-9-0
14 Redskins They won at Philadelphia to stay alive in the playoff chase. That was a must-have victory. --7-9-0
15 Texans By winning at Indianapolis, they are the division leaders. I think they can stay there. 111-5-0
16 Vikings They won at Jacksonville to keep their playoff hopes alive. They face the Colts this week. 18-7-1
17 Titans They face a brutal game at Kansas City this week against the Chiefs. If they win, they might win the division. 29-7-0
18 Packers They have won three straight and they are pushing for the division lead. They will be tough to beat if they get into the postseason. 36-9-1
19 Panthers Where has that showing against the Chargers been all season? They looked good on Sunday. 77-9-0
20 Colts That loss to the Texans could be the damning blow to their season. The schedule is tough the next two weeks. 210-6-0
21 Bengals The Bengals have won two straight games as Andy Dalton continues to have a good season. It's too late though. 36-10-0
22 Chargers The Chargers will likely be looking for a new coach after the season. I can't imagine Mike McCoy coming back now. 712-4-0
23 Bills Is Rex Ryan on his way out? It's only a matter of time now it appears. 36-10-0
24 Saints Drew Brees has struggled the past two games, and they've lost both. Can he get it turned around? 213-3-0
25 Cardinals This season has been a special-teams disaster, and it will keep them home come playoff time. --3-13-0
26 Eagles That 3-0 start was a big tease. This team has a long way to go to be a playoff contender. 39-7-0
27 Jets They won at San Francisco, which might help save Todd Bowles' job. It didn't look good early. --4-12-0
28 Rams This team gets worse by the week. The defense isn't even good anymore. And now Jeff Fisher is gone. --13-3-0
29 Bears They've had a ton of injuries, but they're still playing hard, which is a good sign. There might be some staff changes after the season. --12-4-0
30 Jaguars And the beat goes on. Play close. Lose again. There's a new coach coming in a month. --5-11-0
31 49ers They competed against the Jets, only to lose in overtime. It sounds like big changes might be coming to this franchise. --4-12-0
32 Browns Are they winning this season? No. Robert Griffin III isn't changing that. --7-8-1
CBS Sports Senior Writer

Pete Prisco has covered the NFL for three decades, including working as a beat reporter in Jacksonville for the Jaguars. When he's not watching game tape, you can find Pete on Twitter or dreaming of an... Full Bio

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