Still the Man in Dallas
Tony Romo is close to making a full recovery from his surgery to repair a herniated disc, and it’s looking like the Cowboys will have him back at full strength in time for the preseason. While Romo’s snaps in those practice games will likely be very limited, we should be seeing him under center to start the season in Dallas, just like we have every year since 2005. The question is, how much more does Romo have in the tank, and will the injuries start to mount up?
Romo had stayed relatively healthy throughout his career. His biggest injury was a broken collar bone in 2010 when the Giants were basically allowed to body slam him into the ground at will. Other than that, he’s missed three games in 7 years and he’s proven to be one of the toughest QBs in the league. Soon, the Cowboys will have to start worrying about his age. Romo is 34 this season, and rare is the quarterback that can continue to play at a high level into his late 30s. He’s got a ton of money left on that deal he signed before last season, so Jerry Jones has gone all-in on Tony being the guy to lead Dallas for the immediate future.
Historically, most QBs start to decline at about 34-35 years old, and if that’s the case with Romo we’ll start to see it in 2014. It definitely hasn’t started yet though. Romo had a great season through the air, racking up 31 TDs while throwing only 10 INTs. Contrary to the popular belief that Romo turned the ball over a lot in 2013, it was his second-best season in terms of interception percentage. He threw an interception late in the fourth quarter of the 51-48 loss to the Broncos, but as Roger Staubach commented after the game, if your quarterback throws for over 500 yards and gets you 48 points, it’s the defense’s fault if you lose the game.
There’s no doubt the Cowboys are going with Romo as their guy for at least the next two seasons barring an extremely drop off in production, and it makes sense to do so. They money is invested, there was no “must-pick” at the position in the draft (unless you think Johnny Manziel is the next Steve Young), and he’s still a very capable quarterback. The big decision will need to be made when he’s not among the league’s best in TD/INT and quarterback rating. Unfortunately for Cowboys fans, that could be sooner rather than later.
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