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Cowboys open up 'informal' contract talks with Tony Romo

By Will Brinson | NFL Writer

Man, if you thought a full year of discussion over what Joe Flacco was worth was fun, you're going to love 2013, when we spend many months debating how much the Cowboys should give Tony Romo.

And they're apparently willing to pay the man (again: he's already gotten more than $60 million). Cowboys executive stephen Jones told 105.3 The Fan in Dallas that the team is in "informal" contract discussions and that Romo deserves to get paid.

"We have a great quarterback and he deserves to be paid," Jones said. "We have a good quarterback and we want to reward him. He's in the last year of a contract, and our goal is to not let the quarterback run out of contract."

Romo's one of the most scrutinized players in the NFL, owing very much to his single playoff win and having only been to the postseason three times in his career. He's a very talented quarterback, but being the signal caller for the Cowboys results in an excessive focus on whether or not he's "clutch."

The reality is the Cowboys can't lose him. They're like the Ravens in that regard, holding onto a skilled (albeit flawed) quarterback and not sitting on the future of the franchise.

"When you have a good one and you're fortunate enough to have a good one, then he's going to take up the biggest part of your cap space, so you have to be partners with one another and you have to do things," Jones said. "No one wants to win more, no one wants to have success more than Tony. He knows, in order to do that, we have to manage our cap, and he plays a big part in that because the percentage of the cap that he takes."

Romo's got a $16.8 million cap number in 2013, so getting his deal restructured is kind of a top priority this offseason. Given that he's a free agent after the season ends, it's pretty likely an extension will come along with that restructure.

It'll likely be the type of contract that will carry through Romo's mid-30s; Jones said they're eyeing a three- or four-year deal for Romo this time around. Which is going to make the reaction about the deal and the general focus on what the Cowboys are paying for what they get fascinating.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our RSS Feed watch Pro Football 360 daily at 3 p.m. ET and NFL newsletter. You can follow Will Brinson on Twitter here: @willbrinson.

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