The Cowboys have nothing to play for Sunday when it visits Philadelphia to close the regular season as Dallas has clinched the NFC's top seed. Thus it appears we will see Tony Romo in action for the first time in more than a year. BetOnline also offers a prop on where Romo plays in 2017.
For a while there, Cowboys owner/GM Jerry Jones and Coach Jason Garrett were saying that their team was playing to win in Philadelphia and that the starters would play. But they also never said how long. And the latest reports are that the Cowboys will be cautious and only play guys like quarterback Dak Prescott and running back Ezekiel Elliott, among others, a couple of series and then pull them. There's simply no reason to risk getting them hurt even with next week off. The Cowboys are now 4.5-point underdogs on NFL picks.
That does mean Elliott likely will fail to break Eric Dickerson's NFL rookie rushing record unless Elliott has a couple of 95-yard runs before he's pulled. With 1,631 yards through 15 games, Elliott currently ranks third on the all-time rookie rushing list. Elliott may catch George Rogers's mark of 1,674 yards for second place but he's not catching Dickerson's record of 1,808.
Early this week, Jones said he didn't anticipate Romo playing this week because it wasn't worth the risk. And third-stringer Mark Sanchez has been activated and should play the majority of snaps. But on Friday, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Romo would see action. Romo has not played in a regular-season game since a loss to the Carolina Panthers on Thanksgiving last year, when he suffered a broken left collarbone for the second time in the 2015 season. Then of course he broke a bone in his back this preseason vs. Seattle -- opening the door for Prescott to have one of the best rookie seasons for a QB ever.
No one expects Romo to be in Dallas next year as Prescott is the future and you don't pay a guy like Romo some $17 million to be a backup. BetOnline has an NFL prop on where Romo will play in 2017:
NY Jets (+300): The Jets will certainly have an opening as Ryan Fitzpatrick won't be back, Bryce Petty hasn't looked like an NFL QB and Christian Hackenberg is, well, Christian Hackenberg.
Denver Broncos (+400): Romo has been linked to the Broncos for a while. Trevor Siemian played pretty well at times this year, however, and the team did take Paxton Lynch in the first round of the 2016 draft.
Dallas Cowboys (+450): Jones does love Romo, but Romo will want to go somewhere and start.
Arizona Cardinals (+500): The Cards could move on from Carson Palmer and Romo could walk right into a contending team.
Miami Dolphins (+500): I don't see this happening as Ryan Tannehill was having a good season before going down injured and he has a big contract.
Chicago Bears (+600): The Bears are going to move on from Jay Cutler and could use a one-year bridge starter as whichever QB the team takes in the 2017 draft can learn on the sidelines next year. Romo and Bears GM Ryan Pace know each other as both went to Eastern Illinois. But would Romo want to go start for a rebuilding team?