Could the New York Jets pursue QB Tony Romo?

While the Jets seem content to ride the season out with Ryan Fitzpatrick, it isn’t exactly a trade secret that his time with the organization is nearing its merciful end.

The quarterback has proven the polar opposite of what he was last season, when he led the NFL’s No. 10 offense behind a franchise record 31 touchdown passes.

So the time seems right for the Jets to start considering who his immediate replacement will be. We say immediate, because options like Bryce Petty and especially Christian Hackenberg are not yet ready to commandeer an NFL offense. To start either of these players would be for the team to concede that they are in full rebuilding mode, which they contend they aren’t.

Which could put the Jets in the market for a veteran quarterback on a potential short term deal to make one last heave for the postseason before they enter a new phase.

Could that short term prospect be Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo?

In his 14 pro seasons, Romo has proven himself as one of the league’s better passers, being named to four Pro Bowl teams while amassing 247 touchdowns against 117 interceptions. Just two seasons ago, he threw for over 3,700 yards to go with 34 scores and just nine picks.

But in considering a Romo addition, the Jets would have to face two blunt realities, one of the physical damage and of economics.

Should the Cowboys release or trade Romo, they would have to absorb a salary cap charge of $19.6 million next season, a number that inflates to $24.7 million if he remains with the team. He is also due to reap $14 million in base salary for the forthcoming season.

Those numbers, combined with his age (36) and brittle bones, as represented by a finger, disc, two process fractures, and three collarbone issues, could be enough for the Jets, and indeed a multitude of other prospective teams, to say, “Thanks, but no thanks.”

Of course, it’s entirely possible that Jerry Jones doesn’t even give them an opportunity to say so, considering his loyalty to and affection for Romo, as described by one league source in conversation with NJ Advance Media.

“Dallas isn’t going to cut him,” the source said recently. “Plus, Jerry loves the guy. He loves Tony. He’s not going anywhere.”

Neither are the Jets.

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