Tony Romo’s Future Is Riding On Tonight’s Game Against The Bears
The Cowboys have spent the majority of the 2014 NFL season looking like world-beaters. Behind a resurgent defense, that somehow went from historically bad to 16th best in the league, and the best offensive line in football, the Cowboys have managed to win 75% of their games this season, outscoring opponents 302 to 273.
DeMarco Murray has forged an MVP-caliber season and should break the Emmitt Smith's single-season team rushing record of 1,773 yards.
Dez Bryant is on pace to set career marks in both yards and touchdowns.
And Tony Romo has...um, well, Romo is middle of the pack in pretty much every statistical category this season -- which has been far from his best.
We'll get back to him in a second.
Heading into Thursday night's matchup against a listless Chicago Bears team, the 8-4 Dallas Cowboys are currently projected to miss out on the playoffs yet again (for the fifth consecutive year, mind you). Their odds of playing in January have been calculated at 41% -- and that's not even factoring in Romo's tendency to, ahem, struggle in meaningful football games down the stretch. (Now back to Romo.) Literally all of his numbers in December are lower than the other four months he typically plays football in (January not included). Yards, touchdowns, passer rating, completion percentage, wins -- you name it, he does it less during the holiday season. A loss tonight all but seals their fate, which raises an interesting question...
What do you do with a 35-year-old quarterback with one playoff win in 11 seasons, who'll be making $27.7 million in 2015?
Thanks to a ridiculous six-year, $108 million signing bonus in 2013, cutting Romo this offseason wouldn't make sense from a numbers standpoint. Even for Jerry Jones, taking a $27 million cap hit and still needing to find a quarterback would be crazy -- even if RGIII becomes available. That being said, cutting/trading Romo in 2016 creates only $11 million in dead money, which makes a move within the realm of possibility.
If Romo misses the playoffs this year, 2015 will be one of those do-or-die seasons (and we know how the guy deals with pressure). If he fails to take the Cowboys deep into the playoffs then, we have a hard time imagining crazy uncle Jerry would keep him and his $22 million cap hit for the 2016 season. Especially when Russell Wilson, Cam Newton and Andrew Luck become unrestricted free agents that summer.
Or they could just keep him until he's 40.
Photos via Getty, Sportrac
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