FRISCO, Texas – It's a good bet that Tony Romo won't be active this weekend in Cleveland, but the Cowboys continue to be encouraged by his progress.
Romo participated in practice for the second-straight day on Friday, after missing the team's Wednesday practice. That means the veteran quarterback has attended four of the Cowboys' last six regular practice sessions in the past two weeks.
Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said Friday that Romo is still working his way back to full health, but his progress has been encouraging. To hear it from Jones, it could even be enough to see Romo active on a game day sometime soon.
"I don't want to get into detail, but I sure do see him active," Jones said. "Like I said, we'll play that by ear. But I see Tony active in the future and the near future."
Romo has been taking consistent steps in the past months or so. It started with solo throwing sessions before showing up to practice. At the end of last week and again this week, though, he has been in uniform and participating in non-contact drills with wide receivers and running backs.
Cowboys coach Jason Garrett has even allowed that Romo has taken scout team reps in the seven-on-seven portions of practice. It's a gradual process, but Romo's teammates have taken notice. Dez Bryant was quite complimentary on Thursday, joking about the strides Romo has made since his injury.
"I'm pretty sure he's just trying to ease himself in, get his mind right and all that stuff," Bryant said. "He's been working. I'll give him that. He lost some weight. I thought I saw a couple of abs on him."
What that means for Romo's game status remains to be seen. Jones and other Cowboys officials have been non-committal about the quarterback situation, stating that Romo isn't healthy enough to merit discussing the starter situation.
Having said that, Romo being active for a game would certainly be a step in the right direction. The 36-year-old has been inactive for all seven games this season, and even seeing him in uniform for a game would be quite a development.
Before he gets to that point, though, Jones said he has more work to do. And the 6-1 record the Cowboys have compiled to this point gives him the freedom to do just that.
"He needs to have his back as strong as he can possibly be," Jones said. "He's ahead of where he came back last year, but we need to see more."