Was Tony Romo Worth Massive Contract Extension?

Chris Imperiale@@Bleacher_ImpCorrespondent INovember 6, 2013

CANTON, OH - AUGUST 8: Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones talks with Tony Romo #9 on the sidelines against the Cincinnati Bengals during the 2010 Pro Football Hall of Fame Game at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Field at Fawcett Stadium on August 8, 2010 in Canton, Ohio. The Cowboys defeated the Bengals 16-7. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

For Cowboys fans, this is the question they’ve been pondering for a good part of the last decade. Is Tony Romo the right guy to lead Dallas to a Super Bowl title?

Jerry Jones gave his answer this past offseason when he rewarded his quarterback with a six-year, $108 million extension that included $55 million guaranteed. Romo isn’t going anywhere, and that is simply the best move the Cowboys could have made.

Romo is one of the better options at quarterback in the NFL and gives his team a fighting chance each and every week. That’s a lot more than some teams can say.

In Week 9, some of the quarterbacks to start games were Jeff Tuel, Christian Ponder, Terrelle Pryor, Jason Campbell and Case Keenum. That list didn’t include the backups who filled in for guys like Aaron Rodgers and Jay Cutler.

Romo and the Cowboys face the New Orleans Saints in Week 10.
Romo and the Cowboys face the New Orleans Saints in Week 10.Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

The point is, solid quarterbacks are clearly hard to come by, so when you have someone capable, you should keep him around for as long as possible.

Since taking over as the starter in 2006, Romo has led the Cowboys to a 60-42 record overall. Not too awful considering the amount of ridicule he goes through.

The problem with Cowboys fans and people all around the league is the expectation created for players like Romo. Just because he isn’t Peyton Manning or Tom Brady, he immediately gets labeled as “not good.” When expectations are too high, the only place to go is down, and that’s what’s happened with Romo thus far in his career.

It took Peyton Manning, arguably one of the greatest quarterbacks in the history of the game, nine full seasons before he was able to win his first Super Bowl. 2013 marks only the seventh full season for Romo as the Cowboys’ quarterback.

In today’s society, everyone has zero patience. People need results now, and Romo simply hasn’t delivered yet.

What people around the Cowboys need to remember are the times when the team didn’t have a great player at the position. Many people seem to forget that the Cowboys’ quarterbacks have not always been Roger Staubach, Don Meredith and Troy Aikman. There were many guys in between these elite players who were simply terrible. Before Romo, the quarterback situation in Dallas was a carousel of bad young players and washed-up old guys.

After Aikman, the team went through years of poor performances thanks to the likes of Quincy Carter, Anthony Wright, Ryan Leaf, Clint Stoerner, Chad Hutchinson, Drew Henson, Vinny Testaverde and Drew Bledsoe. How does Romo compare to this list?

When put in the right perspective, Romo is a good NFL quarterback who will have his team competing every season. No, the Cowboys haven’t made a deep playoff run or won the division the last few seasons. However, they’ve been in contention every year and have only had a losing record one time under Romo (in 2010 when he got injured six games in).

Did you know that Romo has the fourth highest passer rating ever in the NFL? He currently sits in a top five that consists of Aaron Rodgers, Steve Young, Manning and Brady.

According to Desmond Purnell of the NFL Network, Romo has 10 game-winning scoring drives since 2011, tied for most in the league. Critics bash Romo for throwing late-game interceptions, and that’s all people remember him for. On the other hand, he led Dallas to a comeback victory this week against the Vikings, and I don’t think I’ve heard it talked about once.

Similar to Manning, John Elway played 12 years in the NFL before capturing Super Bowl wins in his final two seasons. No one remembers the years he didn’t succeed because that’s what a ring can do for a quarterback.

I think Romo is the best option for the Cowboys at quarterback and deserves the contract he signed. Only time will tell whether he will earn the recognition of being one of the greats by winning a Super Bowl.



All statistics via Pro-Football-Reference.com unless indicated otherwise.