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Cowboys News: At Backup Quarterback, Cowboys Party Like It's 2015

Latest Cowboys headlines: Did Cowboys improve at backup QB? Why another prolonged Romo absence will spell Misery for Cowboys. Theismann: Romo has at least a couple of years left.

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

On the eve of the season-ending loss against the Redskins on January 3rd, Charean Williams of The Star-Telegram wrote an article titled "Cowboys’ No. 1 off-season priority: Find a backup QB they can win with." In the almost eight months since, not much has happened. Jerry Jones and the Cowboys had hoped to address their backup QB situation in the draft, but when the trade-up for Paxton Lynch didn't materialize, they picked Dak Prescott in the fourth round instead. Problem is, Prescott will probably not be ready to play this year, which basically leaves the Cowboys exactly where they were on January 3: Kellen Moore will be the starter should Tony Romo miss time. That didn't work in 2015, will should it work in 2016?

20 Questions: Did The Cowboys Improve At Backup Quarterback? - Staff, Dallas Cowboys
Even dyed-in-blue Cowboys fans will find to hard to answer this question in the affirmative, though Bryan Broaddus offers an interesting take on the question.

Bryan Broaddus: If there was a mistake by this front office and coaching staff, I believe that Kellen Moore should have played earlier. His first start against Buffalo was not good but I did like what I saw from him against a Washington defense that was playing well down the stretch. In my opinion if Moore could have started two more games, we might have a different view about his ability, either good or bad. By not playing him earlier, there are still those questions if he really is the right guy for the job and that situation doesn’t give me much comfort. I want to believe in Kellen Moore but I can also understand why there are people within the organization that are split on his ability. But they have no one to blame but themselves in being in this situation.

Another Prolonged Romo Absence Will Spell Misery For Cowboys - Sean Stires, Today's Pigskin
Stires argues that a prolonged Romo absence is likely to mean prolonged misery for the Cowboys and their fans this fall, and it's hard to argue with him.

The Cowboys have all the tools to put around their quarterbacks this fall. They still have one of the top rated offensive lines in the NFL and drafting Elliott at number four means they plan to lean on the running game heavily to prop-up Romo like they did in 2014 when current Tennessee Titan DeMarco Murray ran for 1,845 yards. A healthy Bryant to lead the receivers will go a long way as well, but all of that is window dressing.

Romo came down on his collarbone twice last year and both times the blow was costly. No matter how good the line is, Romo and the Cowboys alike are just one awkward fall from catastrophe.

NFC East breakdown: Everything to know of Giants’ competition - Bart Hubbuch, New York Post
In his preview of the NFC East teams, Hubbuch rubs some more salt into the Cowboys' biggest wound.

But Romo is by far the biggest worry, coming off repeated collarbone injuries and surgery that caused him to miss all but four games last season — the primary reason Dallas slumped from 12-4 to 4-12. The only backups are Kellen Moore, who went 0-2 while completing just 59 percent of his passes last year, and rookie Dak Prescott, a read-option quarterback at Mississippi State.

Joe Theismann: Romo has at least a couple of years left - Staff, SportsDay
In a recent interview on NBC5 former Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann talked about how long Tony Romo has left and Romo's supporting cast in Dallas.

"I know Jerry feels it's probably five and Tony thinks it's probably five" Theismann said. "I think it's at least a couple least two good years. For him it has to be two healthy years."

"I think part of what Tony has gone through -and a lot of people don't understand the position this way- it's the single most dependent position on the field," Theismann told NBC5. "The fact that Tony has only played in two playoff games in 13 years is not indicative of the way he plays football. In particular the last four years he has played terrific football as he has been healthy, but not had the supporting cast around him.

Mailbag: Romo Adjusting His Style Of Play? - Dallas Cowboys
Fat chance, say both Bryan Broaddus and Rob Phillips. Here's Phillips:

Romo has made a career out of improvising and buying time in the pocket, and at 36, I don’t think his style of play is going to significantly change at this point. Now, some injuries are simply unavoidable. The first time he broke his collarbone in 2010, a missed block in the backfield gave the defender a free hit on him. The Cowboys are a downfield passing team, but I do think Ezekiel Elliott and the strength of this offensive line will allow the offense to set a physical tone with the running game. That can only help Romo.

Tony Romo watch to begin as Cowboys close in on training camp - Clarence Hill, The Star-Telegram
Romo’s health will be the talk of training camp when the Cowboys report to camp this week, Hill writes.

Quarterback Tony Romo was making all the necessary throws during the off-season and minicamp and is deemed ready to go. However, his recovery from a Mumford procedure on his left clavicle won’t truly be known until he’s hit in real-time speed during the regular season. Until then, just seeing him back on the field and in control is a positive.


Coming off one of his most productive years, can Sean Lee finally put together a full 16-game campaign in 2016? - Kate Hairopoulos, SportsDay
Coming off his first Pro Bowl season, a lot hinges on Sean Lee staying healthy through the season.

The hope is that Lee can remain healthy for a second straight season. He has yet to play a full 16-game schedule in his six-year career. Lee did not participate in offseason practices because he underwent arthroscopic left knee surgery in April. Lee has battled knee injuries throughout his career, including missing all of the 2014 season after tearing his left anterior cruciate ligament at the start of organized team activities.

Lee's playmaking will be even more necessary because he won't be playing alongside middle linebacker Rolando McClain for at least the first 10 games of the season because of McClain's suspension for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy.

Ezekiel Elliott being taught his first NFL, Cowboys lessons - Gil Lebreton, The Star-Telegram
On Friday, Michael Irvin made headlines in the wake of the Elliott allegations when he offered what appeared like a blanket defense of Elliott, but he also offered some cautionary advice to Elliott:

"You can’t allow yourself to be in a volatile relationship," Irvin said on The Rich Eisen Show. "The NFL is not playing with this.

"You have to say to yourself, ‘I can’t allow anybody the opportunity to have a chance to ruin my life in a volatile relationship.’ "

In cases of alleged domestic abuse, particularly in today’s NFL, the public’s verdict often comes unwavering and swift. By nightfall Friday, the Elliott incident was already being talked about across the internet and on ESPN, The NFL Network and even those nightly Hollywood gossip shows.

Welcome to the Dallas Cowboys, Ezekiel Elliott.


Peter King on Roger Goodell: Can commish save his job? - The MMQB
The NFL, which celebrates everything, has nothing planned publicly for the 10-year work anniversary for Roger Goodell. King makes it all sound terribly ominous.

The public hates this man. People have long memories from the Ray Rice affair, and certainly from the story that wouldn’t end—Deflategate. The NFL clearly is banking on time healing the wounds. It’s easy to say the owners support Goodell, but I can tell you this: Some owners I know clearly do not like that the public face of the most successful sports league in American history gets more tomatoes thrown at it than any other commissioner in the 96-year history of the NFL.

I don’t know if he can save his job, or if he should save his job. But he’s got to take some drastic steps to turn around his image. The owners cannot afford to forever have their commissioner being one of the biggest punching bags in American sports history.

And while we're on the topic of people who are full of themselves, here's Carolina owner Jerry Richardson, who had a ridiculous 13-foot statue of himself built in front of the Panthers stadium. While political correctness limited how anatomically correct the two Panthers in the picture below were allowed to be, no such limit exists for bad taste.

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