20 Questions: Will Tony Romo Have A Healthy 2016 Season?

The Cowboys have completed their OTAs and minicamp practices. The offseason is history. Training camp in Oxnard is up next.

The staff writers at DallasCowboys.com – Rob Phillips, David Helman, Nick Eatman and Bryan Broaddus – are attempting to answer 20 pressing questions as the team gets ready for camp and the 2016 season.

Today, our staff completes the series discussing whether quarterback Tony Romo can stay healthy in 2016 after missing 12 games last season due to injury.

No. 2) Will Tony Romo Stay Healthy In 2016?

Rob Phillips:I don't know if anybody can guarantee a full 16 games for an NFL quarterback year to year. Injuries happen, no matter your age or your durability history. I do think Romo has taken the necessary steps to play a full healthy season. The collarbone healed well on its own and the Mumford surgery was an optional procedure that can help prevent another injury to the shoulder area. He says his back gets healthier and healthier the further he gets from the late-2013 surgery. He has one of the league's best offensive lines blocking for him. So, he and the Cowboys have put himself in position to play most of the year, if not all of it, and lead this team back to contention.

David Helman:Can I say both yes and no? Because I ultimately think that's what's going to happen. I don't think Tony Romo is going to play 16 games in 2016. He's 36, he's got a well-documented injury history and he's very likely to take some big hits given the way he plays the game. Just like in 2014, I think he's bound to miss a start or two because of various injury issues. But do I think he'll miss the vast majority of the season for two-straight years? No. The only other time that happened – back in 2010 – he bounced back to play 16 games in 2011. I think he's capable of doing the same this time around. I think he'll start 13 or 14 games this year, and it will make a world of difference for the Cowboys.

Nick Eatman:Can he stay healthy? Sure, he can. He's done it before and it's not like he has to be 100 percent healthy all year. We know that's not going to happen. But he needs to play in at least 13-14 games to make sure this team has a fighting chance to make the playoffs. Of course it just takes one bad hit for a player to get hurt, but this offensive line is designed to protect him most of the time. What this line lacks in pure dominance in the running game, they make up for with quick feet to keep defenders in front of them in the passing game. Romo is going to get hit, but I think he can stay healthy for the most part. If that happens, there's no reason to think the Cowboys can't be a contender again. Even last year, the Cowboys were 3-1 in the games he started and 1-11 when he didn't. That alone is proof just how valuable he is to this team. I think he stays healthy and the Cowboys turn things around dramatically.

Bryan Broaddus:With the way that Tony Romo plays the game staying healthy is not always an option especially at his current age. Can he do things to try and protect himself – absolutely but that's not his style and we all know that. When you have a player that has no disregard for his body in order to make a play, you are going to see potential injury. Romo has played his entire career on the edge and I don't see that changing. If there was a bright spot, I was encouraged by during the OTAs and minicamps was how well he was moving with his back. There were practices the previous two seasons where he looked immobile and that wasn't the case at all this year. Without that stiffness I believe you will see him at least be able to avoid any breakdowns in protection that might occur and handle them accordingly.     

The Cowboys have completed their OTAs and minicamp practices. The offseason is history. Training camp in Oxnard is up next.

The staff writers at DallasCowboys.com – Rob Phillips, David Helman, Nick Eatman and Bryan Broaddus – are attempting to answer 20 pressing questions as the team gets ready for camp and the 2016 season.

Today, our staff completes the series discussing whether quarterback Tony Romo can stay healthy in 2016 after missing 12 games last season due to injury.

No. 2) Will Tony Romo Stay Healthy In 2016?

Rob Phillips:I don't know if anybody can guarantee a full 16 games for an NFL quarterback year to year. Injuries happen, no matter your age or your durability history. I do think Romo has taken the necessary steps to play a full healthy season. The collarbone healed well on its own and the Mumford surgery was an optional procedure that can help prevent another injury to the shoulder area. He says his back gets healthier and healthier the further he gets from the late-2013 surgery. He has one of the league's best offensive lines blocking for him. So, he and the Cowboys have put himself in position to play most of the year, if not all of it, and lead this team back to contention.

David Helman:Can I say both yes and no? Because I ultimately think that's what's going to happen. I don't think Tony Romo is going to play 16 games in 2016. He's 36, he's got a well-documented injury history and he's very likely to take some big hits given the way he plays the game. Just like in 2014, I think he's bound to miss a start or two because of various injury issues. But do I think he'll miss the vast majority of the season for two-straight years? No. The only other time that happened – back in 2010 – he bounced back to play 16 games in 2011. I think he's capable of doing the same this time around. I think he'll start 13 or 14 games this year, and it will make a world of difference for the Cowboys.

Nick Eatman:Can he stay healthy? Sure, he can. He's done it before and it's not like he has to be 100 percent healthy all year. We know that's not going to happen. But he needs to play in at least 13-14 games to make sure this team has a fighting chance to make the playoffs. Of course it just takes one bad hit for a player to get hurt, but this offensive line is designed to protect him most of the time. What this line lacks in pure dominance in the running game, they make up for with quick feet to keep defenders in front of them in the passing game. Romo is going to get hit, but I think he can stay healthy for the most part. If that happens, there's no reason to think the Cowboys can't be a contender again. Even last year, the Cowboys were 3-1 in the games he started and 1-11 when he didn't. That alone is proof just how valuable he is to this team. I think he stays healthy and the Cowboys turn things around dramatically.

Bryan Broaddus:With the way that Tony Romo plays the game staying healthy is not always an option especially at his current age. Can he do things to try and protect himself – absolutely but that's not his style and we all know that. When you have a player that has no disregard for his body in order to make a play, you are going to see potential injury. Romo has played his entire career on the edge and I don't see that changing. If there was a bright spot, I was encouraged by during the OTAs and minicamps was how well he was moving with his back. There were practices the previous two seasons where he looked immobile and that wasn't the case at all this year. Without that stiffness I believe you will see him at least be able to avoid any breakdowns in protection that might occur and handle them accordingly.     

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