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How Will The Cowboys Look With Kyle Orton?

Even though Jason Garrett refuses to rule out Tony Romo, most of the rest of us have made the leap. So, about that backup?

Brian Bahr

The Dallas Cowboys are still dealing with the shock of losing their leader on offense and their franchise quarterback, Tony Romo. The Cowboys organization refuses to say it right now but unless every media source is wrong, Kyle Orton will be the starting quarterback when the Cowboys take on the Eagles on Sunday night for the NFC East crown. Obviously the Cowboys would rather have Romo in the game, but what kind of team will they be with Orton?

The Bad News

1. It has been a while since Orton has played any meaningful football. You have to go all the way back to the end of 2011 since Orton started a game and played serious minutes. He's bound to be somewhat rusty no matter how much he does in practice situations. He does have a brief appearance in mop-up time recently but that's about it.

2. Orton does not have that escapability factor that Romo has meaning the offensive line will have to be especially good on Sunday. They can't count on Orton to bail them out and negative plays on offense are really going to be hard to overcome.

3. Throughout his career, Orton has been dogged with the reputation that he is not a great leader, not really a take charge guy. Romo has never had that problem.

4. He's simply not the quarterback Romo is, his talent level doesn't matchup and will likely need a lot of help from the rest of the Cowboys offense.

The Good News

1. He may not be Romo but Orton has extensive starter experience and has a .500 record in the league as a starter. He's not washed up and he not untested, he's rated as a very good backup.

2. The Cowboys offense has found a lot of success recently with the running game. DeMarco Murray and the offensive line could end up being Orton's best friends on Sunday.

3. Orton may not have a huge arm and be more of a bus driver, but the Cowboys offense hasn't really relied on downfield passing this year. Romo's long throws have been few and far between and he's underthrown many of them. Orton's skill-set is not far out of line with what the Cowboys are running.

That's my take, what do you all think?

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