Dallas Cowboys

Jerry Jones expects Tony Romo to play another five years

LONDON Cowboys owner Jerry Jones expects Tony Romo to play another five years.

In 2013, the Cowboys signed Romo to a six-year extension worth $108 million with $55 million guaranteed. They restructured the deal last off-season, converting $12.5 million of Romo’s $13.5 million base salary into a signing bonus.

The Cowboys’ faith in Romo’s long-term functionality was a reason they passed on drafting Johnny Manziel in the first round as the heir apparent.

“I think Tony Romo has at least five years,” Jones said Thursday. “I’m planning on him having at least five years of playing at a level that would allow us to be possible contenders from that position, and maybe not doing some things that he had earlier as well or maybe with the energy or the efficiency he has, but maybe doing other things better. That’s (what) happens in the NFL with players who play that position. He’s got all that going for him.”

Romo, 34, said during training camp that “over the course of the next four or five years, you’ll see the best version of me that I’ve had throughout my career.”

Told Thursday that Jones said the quarterback was good for another five years, Romo said, “Right around there.”

Romo has had three back issues since the 2013 off-season. He had surgery to remove a cyst, surgery to repair a herniated disk and now two transverse process fractures, which forced him to miss Sunday’s game against the Cardinals.

It was one of two games he has missed with back injuries as Romo also sat out the Week 17 loss to the Redskins last season.

Still, none of that scares Jones about Romo’s future.

“I’m aware of his back,” Jones said. “Only God knows what is in store for his back. I’ve seen backs out there that you wouldn’t believe how they look on the MRIs and how they look on X-rays. Those never impacted careers at all, not his, but [other] players. There’s a concern that probably doesn’t exceed anything past his age. If you’re concerned about his future, then look at his age, and you might say, ‘Boy, you need to be thinking about a time when he doesn’t play.’ I don’t look at it much differently than that with his back, because they’ve been three very different types of injuries that have caused him to miss games in his back.”