The Cowboys played without quarterback Tony Romo on Sunday and any doubt about his importance to their offense disappeared in the 28-17 loss to the Cardinals.
Brandon Weeden threw two interceptions and took all game to find a way to get the ball into Dez Bryant’s hands, leaving the Cardinals Defense free to key on stopping a Dallas running attack that turned in its weakest day of the season behind a shorthanded offensive line. The Cardinals defense is good enough that the Cowboys may have struggled with Romo in the lineup, but it is unlikely the struggle would have been quite as complete as the one they had without Romo this week.
Owner Jerry Jones doesn’t expect to have the same kind of struggle in London against the Jaguars next week. Jones said after Sunday’s loss that the expectation is that Romo’s back will be well enough for him to take the field as the Cowboys try to avoid a third straight loss.
“I do see him playing,” Jones said, via Desmond Purnell of NFL Network. “He’s going on the trip to London, and logic tells you that we wouldn’t have him make that trip to London and back if we didn’t think he was going to play, so it does depend on the type of week he has at practice. But if he has the week we expect, he should be our quarterback.”
Optimism about Romo’s ability to play faded over the course of last week, so we’ll see how things look after a long plane flight. It’s clear, though, that the Cowboys need to have Romo on the field if they’re going to put up anything close to their best effort offensively.