Jerry’s Loyalty To Romo Has Put The Cowboys In Control Of Tedious Negotiation Process
A sucker is said to be born every minute. Substantiating that claim with the past few months of Tony Romo’s negotiations in Dallas serving as an example is an exercise in futility. The earth and the rumormill continue to spin on its axis, but nothing of a constructive nature has happened to reveal such a sucker.
Try as he might, burn up the phone lines as he allegedly did during the Combine, Jerry Jones has yet to find a suitor for his ex-franchise quarterback. It bears mentioning that Jerry has refrained from releasing Romo as well, an eventuality that many had deemed an unavoidable March 9 happening. But instead of happening as expected, Jerry was rumored to have suddenly gotten wise to the fact that there were desperate teams on the lookout for a quarterback, and that the Cowboys’ owner might just be able to cash in big with a trade. A few days after choosing to hang onto Romo, speculation stations around the universe proclaimed the news that Romo was in fact not on the trading block.
All of which has the football world wondering and speculating upon what is fast turning into an ageless question: where will Tony be playing in September?
Denver? Houston? Cleveland? Alcatraz?
Don’t believe the noise coming from the mouths of media-types. These days, the Schefter’s and the Rapoport’s have so many “sources” allegedly speaking to them that stories are changing by the hour. Many more weeks like this one and they may land lifetime gigs as script writers for General Hospital.
Don’t believe Jerry, for obvious reasons. For all we know, Jerry may actually be that “source” which has kept Metroplex heads spinning with rumors. With Jerry, you just never know.
But here’s what we do know. The Cowboys are operating these days on the cheap, shopping for bargain basement deals during free-agency. They’ve re-signed wide receivers Terrance Williams and Brice Butler for a song and have since offered an exclusive rights tender to David Irving, while also signing Seattle defensive end Demontre Moore.
Even more of interest are the players which the Cowboys have allowed to walk away. Safeties Barry Church and J.J. Wilcox have flown to Florida, where they are assured of warmer waters and heavier wallets. Defensive lineman Jack Crawford is gone. So is Terrell McClain.
Based on local reactions from fans, these were players worth fighting over at the negotiating table. However, memories from that defensive debacle versus Green Bay reflect a vivid image of this quartet being heartlessly shredded by an under-manned offensive line and an overrated, ailing wide receiving corps.
Is Jerry striving to be the new master of football frugality, or does he have an ulterior motive in mind? To add to the mangled mess of theories already floating around out there, could Jerry actually be paving the way to keep Tony and his $19 million salary around for the 2017 season?
It would certainly seem that way. And, for the record, let me just state that this would be one of Jerry’s rare managerial decisions that was actually worth supporting.
And it’s not so outlandish as it may at first sound. Remember, nobody in the media knows exactly what Romo’s preferences are for 2017. They supposedly have been given the details of possible trade destinations. But what did Romo desire in the event that a trade never materialized? It’s within reason that Romo would prefer to remain with the Cowboys as a backup, and it’s well within reason to believe that Jerry would make him the backup again while paying him like a starter.
Let’s make this quite clear. Jerry certainly made it more difficult to trade Romo than it had to be. It’s one thing to pledge your loyalty to a 36-year old quarterback who doesn’t wear a Super Bowl ring. It’s another to then broadcast abroad the exact blueprint detailing how you will then go about accomplishing it. But that doesn’t mean that trading Romo is an impossibility, not when the circumstances are just right.
There is a prevailing notion that Dallas absolutely must release Romo, that then and only then will Romo land with another team. Balderdash! Whether he realizes it or not, Jerry holds the whip in this little drama. He has the quarterback that numerous teams are in need of.
Now, John Elway is too shrewd of a general manager to make a deal on anything less than his own terms. It also helps to have two young quarterbacks in the fold. Denver likely won’t sign off on a trade based simply on the fact that they aren’t in a position that would require them to.
In a much more precarious position are the Houston Texans, who have stooped to a game of smoke and mirrors over the past few days. The fine folks down in Mosquitoville would have us believe that Tom Savage is a better option than the Brockweiler. Nice try, but nobody north of Houston – and that means the remaining 31 NFL general managers – will be buying that crock-full. If you thought the Texans were stuck in the mud with Osweiler at quarterback, then be assured they will be headed in reverse with Savage.
If the Texans were truly settled upon Savage at quarterback, then they would have used the $10 million salary cap cushion created when Osweiler was traded to Cleveland by signing cornerback A.J. Bouye to a well-deserved extension. But instead Buoye was allowed to join Church in Jacksonville on a five-year, $67.5 million deal. And when considering the additional departure of starting safety Quinton Demps to Chicago…
If they choose to forego the remaining options at the bottom of the free-agency barrel, a deep class of defensive backs will allow Houston the opportunity to fill these roster holes at a reasonable price in April’s draft. Their needs along the offensive line appear headed toward a similarly priced solution.
In the meantime, the front-office can stop lying to themselves and their fans and get down to the serious business of negotiating with Jerry about a certain quarterback of interest.
The days have been long, the events slow and tedious in preparing such a stage. But be of good cheer. Sooner or later, a sucker will emerge from behind the curtain. That its title will be something other than Jerry may qualify as the biggest surprise of the off-season.