By Mark Lane (@therealmarklane)
Go ahead and nix the Arizona Cardinals as one of the teams Tony Romo will play for in 2017. Incumbent quarterback Carson Palmer announced his intentions to return to the organization this fall.
And there it is: Carson confirms he's coming back pic.twitter.com/UGJ4OASkRb
— Mark Dalton (@CardsMarkD) February 9, 2017
The 37-year-old will count $24.1 million against Arizona’s cap this season. Even if the Cardinals wanted to swap out 14-year-pro for 14-year-pro, it would cost Arizona $28.7 million in dead money to part ways with Palmer in addition to whatever new price tag Romo will come with. Currently, the four-time Pro Bowler is set to count $24.7 million against the Dallas Cowboys’ cap.
Palmer, a former top overall pick in the 2003 draft, the same draft Romo went undrafted in, spent eight seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals from 2003-10. From 2011-12, Palmer seemed to be on the downside of his career with the Oakland Raiders before pairing up with head coach Bruce Arians in 2013 and leading the Cardinals to three consecutive winning seasons and an NFC Championship Game berth in 2015.
While the former USC Trojan missed all but one game in 2016 with a concussion, Romo missed the first eight games of the season with a broken back sustained in a preseason game in Seattle on Aug. 25. Then, he was supplanted as the starter by fourth-rounder Dak Prescott and elected to serve as his backup for the rest of the season than compete for the starting job and distract the team from championship aspirations. Romo appeared in one series in the season finale in Philadelphia on Jan. 1 where he went 3-of-4 for 29 yards and a touchdown.
The impending decision of what the Cowboys will do with Romo is a situation that does hang over Jerry Jones’ head in the off-season.
Said Jones: “It’s a juncture we have to address. I don’t know how optimally we will resolve this. And nobody should be alarmed because you don’t have all the answers. We have some issues here where you have to see how the cards are played. But we’ll work through this.”