Broncos, Texans Favored On Prop To Land Free-Agent Tony Romo

Matthew Jordan

Wednesday, March 8, 2017 11:45 PM UTC

Wednesday, Mar. 8, 2017 11:45 PM UTC

NFL free agency officially opens Thursday, and it looked like a very weak quarterback market. That has changed, however, with the Dallas Cowboys deciding to release all-time leading passer Tony Romo. Where will Romo land? Let’s examine BookMaker’s NFL prop.

Think back to this time last year. Tony Romo was still 100 percent the Dallas Cowboys’ franchise quarterback even though he played in just four games in 2015 due to breaking the same collarbone twice. The Cowboys knew Romo was getting up there in age – he’ll be 37 on April 21 – and tried to trade back into the first round of the 2016 NFL draft to take Memphis quarterback Paxton Lynch as their future at the position in a few years. Except the Denver Broncos beat the Cowboys to the punch for Romo.

We all know what happened next: The Cowboys took a fourth-round flier on Mississippi State quarterback Dak Prescott, Romo suffered a back injury in his first preseason game and Prescott never looked back in taking control of the team. He had one of the greatest rookie seasons ever for a QB in leading the Cowboys to the NFC East title and best record in the conference.

Thus it was a no-brainer decision that Dallas would either trade or release Romo rather than be stuck with a $24.7 million backup. Other teams knew the Cowboys were between a rock and a hard place, so no trade offers were made. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who loves Romo, had choice but to release him and that will happen on Thursday. Romo will still count $10.7 million on Dallas’ 2017 cap and $8.9 million on the 2018 cap.

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On BookMaker’s NFL odds, the Broncos are the -180 favorites to be Romo’s team for Week 1 of the coming season. It’s no secret that Broncos boss John Elway wants Romo or that Romo would like to go to Denver, which still has a Super Bowl-caliber defense and good offensive pieces. The Broncos slipped to 9-7 and missed the playoffs in 2016 not all because of QB Trevor Siemian, but he played a role. Elway struck gold when he signed another accomplished veteran who was released in 2012, a guy named Peyton Manning. Is Romo anywhere near as good as Manning? No, but Romo is better than Siemian or Lynch. Incidentally, Dallas visits Denver in 2017.

The Houston Texans are +145. They might have a more talented roster than the Broncos. Houston won the AFC South Division in 2016 despite horrific quarterback play from big-ticket free-agent Brock Osweiler. The Texans can’t cut Osweiler this year for financial reasons, so Romo would have to take a sizable pay cut to play in Houston. At least he wouldn’t have to leave Texas.

The other options are the Chicago Bears (+1500), New York Jets (+1700), Cleveland Browns (+2500), San Francisco 49ers (+1900), Washington Redskins (+2800) and the field (+1500).

The Bears are going to sign free-agent Mike Glennon, so count them out. The Jets, Browns and 49ers are terrible, and Romo won’t be going to any of those places. Romo respects Jerry Jones so he wouldn’t go sign with the rival Redskins even if Washington had an opening – it doesn’t currently with Kirk cousins.

Prediction: It’s going to be Denver or Houston, and the belief here is the Broncos. Clearly the oddsmakers agree. 

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