June 11, 2013; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) throws during minicamp at Dallas Cowboys Headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
Tony Romo eventually landed at position 15 on Jaworski’s list, which puts him in the top half of league’s quarterbacks. Jaworski believes there are 14 quarterbacks better than Romo. I would say the ranking could be higher, but that’s about right. I’m not happy about quarterbacks like Washington’s Robert Griffin III, San Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick or Seattle’s Russell Wilson being ranked higher. On one hand, they threw the football less than 400 times, yet the quarterbacks were on teams that reached the playoffs. With the exception of Minnesota Vikings quarterback, Christian Ponder, it seems the quarterbacks of playoff teams will get bumped up the rankings.
There’s little doubt that the top of the list will consist of the consensus upper echelon quarterbacks. After them, the area where Romo sits will consist of quarterbacks with debatable and interchangeable slots. Romo, Chicago’s Jay Cutler, Houston’s Matt Schaub, Seattle’s Russell Wilson, Baltimore’s Joe Flacco, Indianapolis’ Andrew Luck, Atlanta’s Matt Ryan and the New York Giants’ Eli Manning all share similar skillsets.
Romo started 10 games in 2006, when he took the reigns from Drew Bledsoe. That was the last season the Cowboys had a running back able to gain 1000 yards rushing. Compare that to the other quarterbacks that had 1000 yard rushers: Ryan (Michael Turner), Schaub (Steve Slaton and Arian Foster), Manning (Brandon Jacobs and Derrick Ward), Flacco (Ray Rice), Wilson (Marshawn Lynch) and Cutler (Matt Forte). I believe each of these quarterbacks will get ranked based on the quality of the team around them and their offensive systems.
I didn’t include Robert Griffin III because his mobility — pre-injury — does set him apart. For the same reason, I excluded Colin Kaepernick. You won’t see any of the other “interchangable” quarterbacks I just mentioned, sprinting 50 yards down the sideline for a touchdown. How high do you rank a quarterback that wasn’t the starter at the beginning of the season?
Enjoy Jaworski’s list, I might use it during my fantasy football league draft as a quarterback cheat sheet. Just don’t let Tony Romo’s position upset you as the team heads into training camp. After all, Trent Dilfer won a Super Bowl as quarterback of the Baltimore Ravens, proving that football is ultimately a team game.