The Dallas Cowboys officially announced earlier today that Quarterback Tony Romo has broken a bone in his back after suffering this hit in the team’s third preseason game.
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) August 26, 2016
The extent of Romo’s injury was later reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter & Todd Archer.
Tony Romo has a compression fracture of his L1 vertebrae, per @toddarcher, an injury that could sideline him 6-10 weeks.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 27, 2016
So, what does this mean for the Philadelphia Eagles?
The Cowboys open their season with two games against fellow NFC East teams, the Giants and the Redskins. If the time frame reported is exact, then the Cowboys starter could return for a Sunday Night Football showdown with the Eagles in week 8. Considering that the Cowboys went 1-11 without Romo last year, this is going to be a severe blow to their Offense and team as a whole when you take into account the amount of suspended defensive firepower. With the Cowboys playing between 2-3 divisional games without key players on both sides of the ball, (including a quarterback with a 47-30 starting record), this could open up the division even further..making Pederson’s rookie season that little bit easier.
If the Cowboys fall 0-2, it’s not as if their road is going to get any easier. Before they play the Eagles, they still have to play the Bengals and the Packers..two teams who will be pushing extremely hard for postseason Football. Dallas could very easily find themselves with four losses on the board without looking at games against the Bears or the 49ers.
The consensus right now is that Romo will return for the week 8 showdown with the Eagles. Facing the rampant Jim Schwartz Defense containing a ferocious Fletcher Cox is not exactly what you want to come back to after yet another back injury. The Eagles Defense will be licking their lips if Romo isn’t 100% or if it’s rookie Dak Prescott starting. Prescott may have been impressive in preseason, but there are still a lot of question marks over the rookie’s current ability.
The Cowboys season has just taken a huge knock..and one that the Eagles will look to capitalize on. The Dallas Offense has a lot of firepower in terms of receiving weapons, an Offensive line that can open up the run game and a rookie running back who could be primed for a big year. But with their signal caller on the sidelines the Cowboys are a completely different team. The NFC East is now once again, one of the most open divisions in the NFL.
If anything, this paints just a glimmer of extra hope for Doug Pederson. Sam Bradford is in the best shape he has been in for a long time, his Offense is beginning to click and the other side of the ball looks fierce in the early stages of preseason. Miracles might be a bit too much for ask for in his rookie season as a Head Coach, but Doug Pederson and his Eagles have been given an extra lifeline and will need to ensure they make every game count if they are to gain any ground on the remaining teams in the division.