IRVING, Texas – For more than a month, the targeted date for Tony Romo's return has been Nov. 22 for the Cowboys' Week 11 game against Miami.
That's been the best-case scenario, and asked about it on Tuesday morning, Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said there's no reason to believe Romo won't meet it.
"No, there's no reason," Jones said. "He's really doing well – you'd like to say ahead of schedule, but who knows about that. But still, I know of no reason why he won't be playing at that time."
That's at least one shred of good news for the Cowboys, who have lost five-straight games since Romo broke his collarbone all the way back in Week 2 against Philadelphia. With the Eagles preparing to make the return trip this weekend, Romo is eligible to return to practice, where he can begin the process of getting ready for that Week 11 return.
"He's very involved, he's of course mentally ready – he stays ready there," Jones said. "But he'll hopefully have the opportunity to physically get ready over these next two or three weeks."
There had been at least some concern that the timing of the Cowboys' schedule might prevent Romo from playing against the Dolphins. Four days after that trip to Miami, the Cowboys host Carolina on Thanksgiving – which is a short turnaround for a 35-year-old quarterback coming off an injury.
Asked if that concerned him, Jones was decisive with his response.
"No. Because he's mentally prepared, and so he'll be doing work that gives him the physical ability to play the game – I'm talking about as far as conditioning, that type of thing," he said. "As far as really getting to see what he's going to be looking at, there'll be plenty of days to get him ready for that."
Perhaps Jones might feel differently if the Cowboys' replacement quarterbacks had fared better, but that just hasn't been the case. Brandon Weeden and Matt Cassel have combined to throw just three touchdowns in five combined starts since Romo was injured. That, combined with the 0-5 record without Romo, has prompted an intent wait for his return from all parties.
"I was hoping that maybe we could come in here, have the success on the field – which really reflects on the quarterback, we all know the drill, the game – and we might have a quarterback controversy," Jones said. "Wouldn't that have been a great issue, when he came back? … But let's not worry about a quarterback controversy. We need him back under center."