IRVING, Texas – Eleven of Tony Romo's 31 touchdowns last season went to No. 3 receiver Laurent Robinson. Now that Robinson has left for the Jaguars for bigger free agent money, the Cowboys must find a replacement this offseason.
Romo believes the club already has some in-house talent. Kevin Ogletree, 2011 sixth-round pick Dwayne Harris and 2011 undrafted rookies Andre Holmes and Raymond Radway will compete for roster spots. This week's draft and the undrafted rookie pool could produce more candidates.
"(Robinson) had a knack for continuing to move as the play broke down, and he understood the timing that I want to see," Romo said. "There's going to be a battle for that position obviously.
"We've got a couple guys that I think have a chance to step up. . . . It's just a matter of who's going to work their butt off and put themselves in that position."
Romo also defended his No. 1 receiver Miles Austin, saying Austin's recent comments to Men's Health about needing to be in better shape last year were likely taken out of context.
Austin missed six games with nagging hamstring injuries and battled them through the end of the season. Romo says Austin's conditioning and work ethic have never been issues – if anything, he goes too hard at times.
"His greatness is that he never gets tired. He just goes and goes and goes and then his body falls apart," Romo said. That's what makes him so good. From my perspective he was in shape – he just probably has to understand his body a little bit sometimes. He's doing that."