Former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo unexpectedly announced Tuesday that he is retiring. So yes, this means that Romo, who was considered by many Texans fans and pundits (including our own Sean Pendergast) to be the best candidate for Brock Osweiler's old job, chose retirement over playing in Houston. Ouch.
Despite a lousy playoff record and zero Super Bowl appearances, Romo was among the better quarterbacks during his 14 seasons in the NFL. He has thrown for more passing yards than any other Cowboy and was a four-time Pro Bowler.
The exceptional season of rookie play caller Dak Prescott last season, while Romo was injured, led the Cowboys to the divisional round of the AFC. The Cowboys settled on Prescott as the future of the franchise, and cut Romo this spring. Though injury-prone, the 36-year-old Romo was considered one of the hottest free agents on the quarterback market.
He would have been a safe and relatively affordable choice for the Texans, who have had rotten luck with QBs in recent years. And it made so much sense! Romo has young children and lives in the Dallas area, so Houston would be an easy commute.
As Sean Pendergast put it:
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I'm not here to tell you that Romo is going to compete for the league MVP, but I am here to tell you that, if he remains relatively healthy (a big "if" to many of you out there, I know) and he chooses to sign with the Texans, they immediately jump up to the clear No. 2 team in the AFC behind the New England Patriots.
High praise. But where does this leave the Texans, who currently have just two quarterbacks on their roster, Tom Savage and Brandon Weeden?
Here's an update on Pendergast's rankings of Texans quarterback candidates:
Tony Romo (Would rather not play football at all than play with Texans)
2. Jimmy Garoppolo (Now the hottest QB on the market; he won't come cheap)
3. Jay Cutler (Start steeling yourself for this reality, Texans fans)
Tyrod Taylor (Will stay in Buffalo)
5. Tom Savage (That name sounds familiar...)
6. Drafted rookie (Mark your calendars for April 27)
7. Colin Kaepernick (With Romo out, his prospects for NFL employment have brightened)
8. Any recycled Bill O'Brien discard (Fitzpatrick, Hoyer, Keenum, Mallett — all possibilities)
9. A broomstick with a bucket for a head (Just a phone call away)
Brock Osweiler (How can we ever repay you, Cleveland?)