By Eric Schmidt

ESPN reported on Wednesday that the Dallas Cowboys want to get a contract extension done with QB Tony Romo. Romo is heading into the last year of his contract, scheduled to earn $11.5 million in 2013, and counts $16.5 million towards this year’s salary cap currently. In recent history, the Cowboys like to get an extension done with their quarterbacks prior to the last year. Perhaps the are also closely watching how the Baltimore Ravens rolled the dice this year with Joe Flacco and are potentially going to lose millions in the process. But should the Cowboys really extend Romo, or should they look elsewhere?

Romo detractors will quickly point out that he falters in big games and the lack of playoff appearances by the Cowboys. Frankly, Romo doesn’t play defense. There are two sides to Tony Romo. On one hand he has thrown for nearly 10,000 yards in the last two seasons throwing 54 touchdowns along the way. The downside is he’s also thrown 35 interceptions. By comparison, Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers has thrown just 32 interceptions in the last four years.

Whether you like Romo or not, from a business standpoint, it makes sense for the Cowboys to get a deal done now. If, for some reason, the Cowboys make a push deep into the playoffs next season, his value escalates greatly heading into free agency without a contract extension in place.

Romo will be 33 this offseason and it’s safe to assume that he should be the Dallas starting quarterback for the next few seasons.

Even with the contract extension, Dallas needs to start looking ahead and drafting a quarterback to groom for the starting role. This year’s draft class doesn’t look to be as productive as the last two classes have been.

Dallas has no choice other than to extend Romo right now. ESPN speculates a three to five-year deal worth around $12 million per season. Seeing that Carson Palmer is relatively the same age and is slated to earn roughly the same amount of money this season, I’d take Romo over Palmer any day.

The turnovers which drive fans crazy are going to remain. His style of play isn’t going to change at this point in his career. But Romo nearly eclipsed the 5,000-yard mark this season and that’s nothing to sneeze at. There are plenty of teams around the league that would take Romo as their starting quarterback in a heartbeat.

 

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