With Tony Romo turning 37 this April, the Dallas Cowboys will shop the quarterback star around to get the best value. But what will Romo cost teams?
At the age of 35, the Swiss tennis pro defied the laws of age, winning an unprecedented 18th major title. It was his first major championship since holding up the Wimbledon Trophy back in 2012.
The obvious difference between Federer’s legacy and Romo’s predicament is the sport — one involves contact, the other does not. But let’s not forget the age we are living in.
The convergence of medicine, technology and data has changed the way professional players play and most importantly, how long they last in a sport.
With Romo turning 37 this April, there’s no reason to believe he can’t stage a comeback of his own. Players and athletes from various sports have found a second wind, despite career setbacks and devastating injuries.
Not only has the tennis world witnessed a 35-year-old win a title at the Australian Open, but his opponent, Rafael Nadal, was the show’s runner-up at the age of 30, which is past the “prime” age in tennis.
Like Federer, who took off six months prior to the Australian Open, Nadal has dealt with several injuries himself, but still managed to fight into the final.
Venus Williams, like Romo, is 36-years-old. She also made it to the Australian Final on the female side, losing to her sister Serena in straight sets. Venus turns 37 this June.
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The price for Romo’s services is a hot debate. Some believe that acquiring the all-pro is a risky investment. I don’t disagree.
There’s risk when you open your wallet for someone who has had multiple back surgeries and other football related injuries. He turns 37 soon, which wouldn’t be a problem if he had the name “Tom Brady” on the back of his jersey.
And then there’s the whole contract situation.
If the Cowboys are to trade or release Romo prior to June 1st, Dallas must eat $19.6 million of dead cap in 2017. Where Romo goes, or how he gets there is uncertain, but what’s certain is that the Cowboys cannot afford to allocate his type of money into the number two spot.
When it comes to Romo’s talent, we’re not exactly talking about a second tier quarterback. Romo needs 817 passing yards to reach the 35,000-yard milestone. He has 248 touchdowns to 117 interceptions, and a rating of 97.1.
With that said, I don’t think it’s unreasonable for the Dallas Cowboys to receive a first-round pick for Romo’s services. Especially when Sam Bradford was sent to the Minnesota Vikings for the same price. Sure, Bradford is seven years younger than Romo.
But a first round tender isn’t a bad price if you think your team is one player away from a Super Bowl appearance.
Romo isn’t Ryan Fitzpatrick. Romo is better. The New York Jets signed Fitzpatrick to a one-year, $12 million contract last season.
Romo isn’t Chase Daniel. Romo is better. The Kansas City Chiefs signed Daniel to a three-year, $21 million deal that put him on the bench. $12 million was fully guaranteed.
Teams around the NFL are short of talented quarterbacks. With Dak Prescott taking over America’s Team, the Cowboys have two valuable players at the quarterback spot.
If quarterback needy teams want to pull Romo away and secure his services, a first-round draft pick is fair compensation. Of course, that changes if the Dallas Cowboys decide to release Romo, who is then able to sign with anyone he desires.
But if teams out there want him, and l believe there are many, then let the sweepstakes begin.