Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Cowboys Begin Contract Negotiations with Tony Romo

The Dallas Cowboys are sticking with Tony Romo as their quarterback moving forward and to show they’re serious about keeping him around the two sides have kicked off their contract negotiations. There has been interest for months now in giving Romo a contract extension despite his so-so play the last decade. But even if fans aren’t sold on Romo as their franchise guy, the Cowboys seem to be but don’t expect them to go crazy with any contract offers.

“We have a great quarterback and he deserves to be paid,’’ Cowboys executive V.P. Stephen Jones said.  “We have a good quarterback and we want to reward him.  He’s in the last year of a contract and our goal is to not let the quarterback run out of contract.’’

Dallas would love to keep Romo around but they’re only going to do so at the right price. One of the major goals in the contract renegotiation is to reduce Romo’s cap number in 2013 which at the moment is a hefty $16.8 million.

This right here means that we could have a situation where Romo follows in the footsteps of Joe Flacco and rides out the remaining year on his contract. If Romo does this he’s taking a major risk in terms of possibly suffering an injury next season. But if he performs up to par and leads the Cowboys deep into the playoffs — or even into the playoffs– he could force a situation where Dallas has no other choice than the franchise him in 2014.

Mike Florio from suggests that Romo should ask for no less than $38.98 million over the next two seasons which would equate to the sum he’d be making over that period if he holds out on a deal this year and the Cowboys franchise him next season. Florio takes it a step further and says a third year added to the deal would mean Tony Romo would be a $63 million quarterback when all his minimum salaries are totaled up.

“I think on this particular situation with Tony is we think we have a great quarterback and we want him to be our quarterback here for the next four to five years,” Jones said.  “When you have a good one and you’re fortunate enough to have a good one, then he’s going to take up the biggest part of your cap space, so you have to be partners with one another and you have to do things.  No one wants to win more, no one wants to have success more than Tony.  He knows in order to do that we have to manage our cap and he plays a big part in that because the percentage of the cap that he takes.’’

So it sounds like the Cowboys want to work out a deal, but while they might be able to get Romo’s cap hit down this season they will eventually pay the price over the next two seasons, or however long Romo’s contract ends up being. The Cowboys cannot restructure Romo’s deal since there’s only one year left on his deal so time is of the essence in these contract negotiations and despite his suspect play recently, Tony Romo controls what happens.

Tags: Dallas Cowboys NFL NFL Free Agency Tony Romo