Romo out at least 3 weeks after surgery

IRVING, Texas — Tony Romo underwent a minor surgical procedure on his back last month to remove a cyst that will keep him out of organized team activities that begin Tuesday and run for the next three weeks.

Sources said the surgery also could keep the Dallas Cowboys‘ starting quarterback out of action until training camp. The team’s minicamp will be held June 11-13 and the club is set to travel to Oxnard, Calif., on July 19 for training camp.

Romo, however, told The Dallas Morning News on Monday night that he expects to be ready for camp.

“If this was the regular season and I had to play next week, I could,” Romo told the newspaper. “This is just about being smart. That’s why I did it now. This will have no effect on training camp. No way will it have an impact. And I still think there’s a good chance I’m on the field for minicamp.”

The Cowboys do not believe the injury to be a long-term concern but they want to be cautious about their approach in the offseason with Romo. When and how Romo got hurt and how long it has been bothering him is not clear. After a season-ending loss to Washington in January the Cowboys feared Romo suffered a broken rib.

Romo told The Morning News that the cyst, which he said caused a constant ache in his back, “was nagging me just enough” to want to get it removed.

“I’d rather be 100 percent, not 96 percent. It’s done and it’s made me feel better,” he told the newspaper.

Romo is expected to also talk to the media Tuesday at the OTAs.

Romo, who turned 33 last month, has always been active in the offseason but cut back on his golf at least in part because of larger involvement with the installation of the offense than in previous years.

Romo signed a six-year extension in March worth $108 million, including $55 million guaranteed.

In the past Romo has used the offseason to tinker with his mechanics from altering his footwork to how he holds the ball. He has used the OTAs and mini-camp as a test for how the changes would hold up under pressure and if he would continue with the changes.

With Romo on the sideline, Kyle Orton will work with the first-team offense. Signed as a free agent last year, Orton played in one game for the Cowboys.

Quarterbacks Nick Stephens and undrafted rookie Dalton Williams will receive more work in Romo’s absence.

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About Neil Farris

I have been covering sports since 2002 when I began writing for my college newspaper. Since then I have covered football regionally and currently work in the NFL department at All Sports Talk.