Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones can’t help himself.
In a continued effort to keep the off-season trade market hot for quarterback Tony Romo, he incessantly sings the praises of the former starter turned back up.
Jones got things started up again on Thursday during an interview with the New York Daily News when he predicted that Romo would get an opportunity to play a role in a possible Super Bowl run for the Cowboys in place of rookie sensation Dak Prescott and that he could convince Romo to stay in Dallas in 2017.
"I don't want it to happen," Jones said. "But I think he may get his opportunity to get us a Super Bowl. While that's a mixed bag when I think about it -- that means you don't have Dak out there -- but it means, what a story, one for the ages, if he'd step in there and this year help us win a Super Bowl on the field with his skill. That can happen here. We're not talking about a bus driver out there. We're talking about a guy who can go out there and move our team."
The idea of Jones waxing whimsically and gleefully about the possible injury to the starting quarterback, your newly-appointed franchise quarterback, in favor of a glorious Romo return is mindboggling at best.
It made for good radio talk Friday during his show on 105.3 The Fan, even if it’s not necessarily good for team chemistry to continue to push an agenda that had seemingly long been put to bed when Romo conceded the starting job to Prescott a few weeks ago.
But Jones says there are no fragile feelings to worry about because of the strength of the principal parties involved, namely Romo, Prescott and coach Jason Garrett.
Jones said Romo, the new backup, is synonymous with the Cowboys in mind, body and spirit.
“There is no fragile feelings on any point,” Jones said on his radio show. “Certainly, Dak Prescott is as steady as they come. Romo is as steady. Jason is steady. We just don’t have any fragileness here. We can talk about this if we want to. It’s just not walking on egg shells here. At the the end day, it’s pretty simple. Think what’s best for your teammates
“Think what’s best for the team. That is what Romo is doing. That is certainly the way Dak approaches the game. That makes the job easy to handle as far as everybody else is concerned.”
Jones went on to contradict statements he made on the radio earlier this week when he insinuated he wanted Romo to get some playing time before the end of the season to be ready for possible action in the playoffs.
Romo hasn’t played in a regular season game in more than a year, dating back to Thanksgiving 2015.
On Friday, he said didn’t want to see Romo risking injury in mop-up duty once the playoff-bound Cowboys have secured the division title and a first-round bye.
"Certainly, I don't want to knock the rust off and risk injury," Jones said. "As sharp as he looks in practice, there's no rust I'm interested in knocking off. He's so sharp out there [in practice] it's unbelievable. He picks it apart."
Regarding his ability to convince Romo to return in 2017 as a backup, Jones said it’s an implied thing because of their relationship.
Jones says money won’t be a factor, despite speculation that there is no way he would keep a backup quarterback due to make $14 million in 2017 with a salary cap number of $24.7 million if they hope to improve the team in other areas.
“We have anticipated having Romo’s salary on our cap structure,” Jones said. “We have anticipated that for years. His staying doesn’t alter what our plans have been. Nothing about the Romo decision will constrain us from doing what we need to do.”
Having the money right is one thing, getting a competitive Romo, 36, to stay on as a backup and not pursue starting jobs elsewhere and a final shot at glory is another. But Jones thinks he can convince him.
"I do," Jones said to the Daily News. "I think if I ask Tony to go with us on that and let's try to win a championship, I think, yes, he will."
Of course, these are things Jones needs to say to make sure potential trade partners understand the Romo won’t be given away for free.
It makes sense from a business perspective.
It still doesn’t make sense to have these conversations while the Cowboys are in the midst of playoff chase, putting even more pressure on a rookie quarterback that has never been in this situation before.