Authentic press conferences in professional sports are as rare as a Honus Wagner baseball card, but yesterday Tony Romo stepped to the podium in Dallas and bared his soul in an emotional statement where he endorsed Dak Prescott as the Cowboys’ starting quarterback going forward and accepted his role as the team’s back-up.
A clearly emotional Romo appeared before the gathered press and effectively ended any remaining controversy regarding his acceptance of his role with the 8-1 Cowboys going forward.
He read from a prepared statement and stated that his reason for supporting Prescott as the starter was simple. He’s earned the right.
“Dak Prescott, and what he’s done, he’s earned the right to be our quarterback,” Romo said. “As hard as that is for me to say, he’s earned that right. He’s guided our team to an 8-1 record, and that’s hard to do. If you think for a second I don’t want to be out there, then you probably never felt the pure ecstasy of competing and winning. That hasn’t left me. In fact, it may burn now more than ever.”
Romo was honest in his admission about how personally difficult the season has been for him after a preseason back injury sidelined him for the first part of the season.
“To say the first half of this season has been emotional would be a huge understatement. Getting hurt when you feel like you have the best team you’ve had was a soul-crushing moment for me. It’s a dark place. Probably the darkest it’s ever been.”
Romo elaborated that this Cowboys team, with Prescott as the starter, has captured something special, and he vowed to be a support mechanism for the young quarterback, rather than becoming a disgruntled locker room cancer.
“If I remember one thing from back then, it’s the people that helped me along when I was young, and if I can be that to Dak, I’ve tried to be, and I will be going forward. I think we all know something magical is happening with our team. I’m not going to allow this situation to negatively affect Dak, or this football team by becoming a constant distraction. I think Dak knows I have his back, and he has mine.”
Controversy diffused. Sometimes the handwriting is on the wall, and it’s difficult to acknowledge. What Tony Romo did was incredibly hard, but it was the right thing to do for the team. There’s a reason the high road is always the road less traveled, and he deserves credit for choosing that path.
Here’s the full video of Romo’s statement:
Here’s Colin’s take on Romo’s press conference from today’s episode of The Herd.
— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) November 16, 2016