Dallas Cowboys

Tony Romo had season ending back surgery but is expected to be ready to go in May

2013 Dallas Cowboys Position Reviews: 

How concerned are the Dallas Cowboys about quarterback Tony Romo’s back heading into 2014?

By Matthew Postins


Dallas Cowboys columnist Matthew Postins of RattleandHumSports.com  will be breaking down every position group for the 2013 Dallas Cowboys. We begin this series of posts with today’s group, the quarterbacks.

Quarterbacks: Tony Romo (starter); Kyle Orton (backup).

Other notable players: None.

In 2013: The Cowboys gave Romo a long-term contract extension this offseason that could be worth $108 million. For their money, the Cowboys asked Romo to get more involved in game planning during the week and providing more feedback to the coaching staff, which he did. But, by the end of the season, it was the Romo we’ve grown used to seeing. He had another great statistical season, throwing for nearly 4,000 yards and 31 touchdowns. He did reduce his mistakes, throwing just 10 interceptions. He led three come-from-behind wins and had the best statistical game of his career – 506 passing yards and 5 touchdowns. But you might have forgotten that, thanks to the late interception he threw with the game tied 48-48. Romo also tossed two picks in the worst collapse in Cowboys history against Green Bay, a collapse in which it was revealed that Romo checked out of a run play and into a pass play, which led to his first interception of that game and a 37-36 loss. Romo’s season ended with back surgery, believed to be for a herniated disk suffered against Washington in Week 16 as he led the Cowboys back from a nine-point deficit in the fourth quarter. The Cowboys are hopeful he can be back on the practice field by May. Orton started the Week 17 game and had a great game, throwing for a Romo-esque 358 yards. But he also threw a Romo-esque interception in the final two minutes that stopped a potential game-winning drive before it even started. Still, Orton’s performance exceeded all expectations.

Looking ahead: Romo’s recovery from back surgery will be one of the big keys to the offseason. The Cowboys are hoping that his recovery will be much like Peyton Manning’s recovery from four back and neck surgeries. But there’s no telling what Romo’s prognosis is, as the Cowboys have been cagey with the details of Romo’s injury. Both Romo and Orton are under contract for 2014 and owner and general manager Jerry Jones said last week that he doesn’t feel pressure to draft a quarterback in 2014 as a potential succession plan to Romo. The Cowboys have drafted one quarterback since Romo took over as starter in 2006.

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Next up: Running backs.

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