I spent Monday doing some family stuff. I logged onto Twitter in the early evening and saw some discussion about Tony Romo having a back injury, but I didn’t have time to read much about the situation.
Imagine my shock tonight when I started hearing that Romo was out for the rest of the year. Wow.
Adam Schefter is saying 100 percent definitively that Romo is out. He says Romo needs surgery and won’t be able to play again this season. Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network says he’s heard from sources that Romo does need the surgery, but the Cowboys aren’t ruling Romo out yet. Rapoport’s sources say it is highly unlikely he’ll play, but they’re hoping for some kind of miracle.
Jason Garrett and the Cowboys say this is a day-to-day situation.
Schefter explained that Dallas is doing the same thing that the Eagles did earlier in the year with Michael Vick. The Eagles knew Vick wasn’t ready to play, but let the situation drag out. That way the opponent had to prepare for him and Foles. The Eagles would then make the announcement late in the week, despite the fact everyone in the football world already knew that Foles was going to start.
This is crazy news. It sounds like Romo is really out. I don’t know what to think. Romo has horrible numbers in Week 17 games. But I also remember 2009 when he helped Dallas beat us 24-0. It’s fun to pick on him, but Romo really is one of the best QBs in the league.
It should be very beneficial to have Romo out, but I have to admit that it makes me nervous. Kyle Orton has been Romo’s backup for 2 years. He’s thrown a total of 15 regular season passes. There isn’t much useful tape of him as the Dallas QB. Heck, he only threw 22 passes in the 2013 preseason. The Eagles coaches will have to do some guessing.
Orton has started 69 games in the NFL. He’s a veteran QB who shouldn’t be overwhelmed by being thrust into the starting role. At the same time, he’s only 35-34 as a starter, with a career QB rating of 79.7. He showed promise in Chicago and Denver at times, but never could prove to be “the answer” at QB. There is a reason he’s the backup in Dallas.
It might be fun to start dreaming of the Eagles shutting out the Boys or resting their starters in the 3rd quarter since the game is so out of hand, but don’t count on that happening. Dallas still has some great weapons. This isn’t a team that will just lay down since they still have a division title to play for. And we know first hand about QBs having a shockingly good day and posting huge numbers.
That said, there is a big difference in Matt Cassel’s and Kyle Orton’s situations. Cassel had 3 starts under his belt this year when the Eagles faced him. There was no rust. He knew the weapons around him and they knew him. Cassel had already thrown 149 passes for the Vikings in 2013 when the Eagles came to town. Also, Dallas won’t have to completely change the offense. Orton can run the same stuff as Romo, just not as well. When Cassel started against the Eagles, he didn’t have his top 2 RBs so the coaches made changes to the offense on the fly.
If I were on the outside, I’d say the Romo injury gives the Eagles a huge advantage. As an Eagles fan, it has me nervous. You can bet the Cassel disaster will serve as a great motivational tool for the Eagles. They won’t let up with Romo out the way they might have if they’d steamrolled the Vikings. The taste of that humble pie should still be fresh in the mouths of the Eagles defense. Heck, Chip Kelly might still have some of that pie in the fridge. Everybody take a bite and never forget.
There will be approximately 37 million stories and rumors about the Cowboys QB situation between now and Sunday. I’m guessing I’ll be tired of this storyline by Tuesday at 4pm. This is gonna be a long week.