Many discussions have been had since Tony Romo went down in the Turkey Day Massacre with another clavicle injury. Thanksgiving was a bloodbath for the Dallas Cowboys quarterback and we understand that it wasn't his best game but pump the brakes with the talk that he's suddenly done because of his latest injury. Tony Romo's ability to play this game at a high level is still very much alive. This is a guy that was an MVP candidate this time last year and is 3-1 as a starter this season. At 36 years old when next season begins he has plenty of football ahead of him. This was not another back injury or a neck injury or any injury that should cause major concern for his availability once OTA's begin.
We are not witnessing Troy Aikman in 2000 after multiple concussions and back spasms. We are not seeing 2015's Peyton Manning that has thrown for nine touchdowns and 17 interceptions on a weak arm. Romo's issue is neither of those things, it's an unfortunate injury to a quality quarterback that has had quite the unlucky year. Yes, Tony Romo is no spring chicken anymore and has had some injuries that cause some concern. Yet, the further he's been removed from the back injury, the better he's been and this clavicle problem is not career threatening by any means. In fact, Romo's abilities in the games he's played look far more promising than some of his performances last season. He couldn't make a lot of throws last season that he's made this year. Don't let an aggravated re-injury of his collarbone suddenly doom his ability to come back next year with plenty of moxie and competitive will as ever.
Jerry Jones may be crazy to think 4-5 more years with Romo at the helm but 2-3 more years is reasonable enough. The real problem comes with how dependent this team is on their quarterback. Think about it. The Steelers, Browns, Texans, and Colts have all found ways to win without their presumed starting quarterback. The Cowboys are 0-7 without Tony Romo. As Romo has gone, so have the Cowboys, the players on this team do not execute without him.
I would agree that it is certainly time to start looking for a quarterback of the future, but not for the near-future. The team was 16-4 in the last two seasons with Romo as their starter, I don't count the Arizona game of last season because Brandon Weeden started that contest. Tony Romo can still play at a high level in the NFL and it's just unfortunate circumstances that derailed 2015. In fact, as far as the Cowboys are concerned, just about every button they have pushed has been the wrong one. Last season, every button the Cowboys pushed was the right one. It reminds me of a great line that Ray Liotta gave in the movie Blow:
"Sometimes you're flush and sometimes you're bust, and when you're up, it's never as good as it seems, and when you're down, you never think you'll be up again, but life goes on."
The truth of the matter is that the 2015 Dallas Cowboys bet on themselves and they were wrong at almost every turn. They have been in a bad situation at backup quarterback for a while now. The Cowboys need to solve their issues at backup quarterback, plain and simple. Taking a look at the way the Green Bay Packers handled their situation might be a good place to start. Perhaps figuring out a better way to ensure that every signal caller can run the offense would be a better start.
Look at the Patriots, they have had a luxury in Tom Brady, yet they have drafted three quarterbacks since the Cowboys last took one. The Packers have had Aaron Rodgers, but they also have drafted two of their own since Dallas took one. It has more to do with stubbornness than anything else. Just because you have a good one, doesn't mean that you shouldn't always be looking. The likelihood of Jerry and Company finding another undrafted gem like number nine is pretty darn slim.
Tony Romo is a great quarterback and still the Cowboys' best player on the roster but the organization needs to quit ignoring the position after the starter. So as it's truer than ever that the Cowboys must address this situation this offseason, it's also not time to stop trying to win. Whether they decide it's best to draft high, middle, or low; they must get a young gun on the roster while maintaining their ability to compete. Of course, I'm not talking about a Dustin Vaughan from West Texas A&M. This team has been built around Romo but maybe it's time they build it around the younger talent on the roster and let Romo conduct from within.
Tony Romo has got plenty of good play left in him, it's time for the front office and coaches to make sure they maximize that.