Barring a miracle, Tony Romo has taken his last snap for the Cowboys. With the emergence of 2016 fourth-round pick Dak Prescott, Dallas' quarterback situation appears set for the foreseeable future, and that future doesn't involve Romo.
Which means that the 36-year-old quarterback will almost certainly be elsewhere in 2017. And if "elsewhere" means another NFC team, that's a reality that Cowboys owner -- and Romo friend -- Jerry Jones doesn't even want to entertain.
"That bothers the heck out of me because I know wherever he goes, he'll start. I know wherever he goes, he'll compete, absent injury," Jones said Friday during an appearance on ESPN Dallas.
"We saw a guy [Tom Brady] several years older than him win a Super Bowl. I think he's that kind of player, so you've dealt in your own conference, somebody that has the possibility to come back and beat us."
Romo suffered an injury during the preseason and by the time he was healthy enough to return several months later, Prescott had helped the Cowboys become one of the league's best teams. And as such, Prescott remained the starter while Romo stayed on the bench. But common sense says there's no way the Cowboys will pay Romo $17 million next season to hold a clipboard. So in the coming weeks, he'll likely be released or traded.
"We've got a lot to do. We'll get it sorted out. That's what it's all about," Jones said. "Relationships come into play here. When you've got the kind of relationship I've got with him, and the type of person that Tony Romo is, we'll get this worked out."
Still, Jones would love for Romo to stay in Dallas and serve as Prescott's backup. The problem, of course, is selling that to Romo, who would improve the quarterback situation on a number of teams.
"It has to do with what his options are," Jones explained. "If he went to another team, it has to do with what his ability is to compete here. All of these things I don't have an answer to -- we just have to work through it."
CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reports that four teams could be in the mix for Romo's services.
The Cowboys will listen to offers for Tony Romo, sources said, once owner Jerry Jones has his meeting with the Pro Bowl quarterback. Romo prefers to be moved to a contending team -- specifically, the Texans, Cardinals, Broncos or Chiefs.
The Bills also have significant interest in Romo, team and league sources said, though they realize that it might be a tough sell. The Bills have not given up hope on retaining Tyrod Taylor on a lesser contract, too, though that might be wishful thinking on their part at this point.
As for possible compensation, La Canfora adds: "Some GMs opined that the Cowboys would get a second-round pick, plus potentially another high pick based on Romo's playing time."