Jerry Jones has been dragging his feet on a decision about the future of Tony Romo for some time, but on Monday there was a glimmer of hope that the situation could be nearing an end. Jones finally gave NFL general managers permission to contact the veteran quarterback to schedule physicals, visits, and workouts, according to NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo.
UPDATE: The situation did end on Tuesday morning when Adam Schefter reported that Romo would leave the NFL for a broadcasting job.
Jones made it clear that teams can only speak with Romo about his existing contract, which locks him up in Dallas through the 2019 season. And that means teams can talk to Romo if they want to trade for him.
The thing is, teams don’t want to trade for him:
It’s likely that Jones is trying to light a fire under another team to get them to make a move before he has to release the longtime Cowboys quarterback. Teams like the Denver Broncos and Houston Texans should be interested in acquiring Romo, but his contract may make a trade difficult to pull together. Romo carries a cap hit of $24.7 million in 2017, $25.2 million in 2018, and $23.7 million in 2019.
The Cowboys almost have to move on from Romo. Dak Prescott earned the starting job in his rookie season, which culminated in Offensive Rookie of the Year honors for the young quarterback.
Romo expected to be waived by the Cowboys at the start of free agency, but he’s still with the team nearly a month later. Jones said at the NFL owners meeting that the Cowboys’ decision on Romo might not happen until before training camp.
At least Jones is willing to let teams approach Romo to start the process, even if it is just in the context of a possible trade. Offseason training programs begin soon, and if Romo remains with the Cowboys, he’ll lose valuable time learning the offense and acclimating to a new team.