NLF notes: Cowboys, Tony Romo agree to $108m deal

Tony Romo has a chance to start for the Dallas Cowboys longer than Roger Staubach or Troy Aikman. The question is whether he will ever match their Super Bowl pedigrees.

Romo signed a six-year contract extension worth $108 million Friday, with about half of that guaranteed to make him the highest-paid player in franchise history.

The agreement will lower the quarterback’s salary cap number for 2013 by about $5 million, giving the team room to sign free agents and draft picks.


Romo, who turns 33 next month and was entering the final year of his contract, gets $55 million guaranteed.

Get Breaking Sports Alerts in your inbox:
Be the first to know the latest sports news as it happens.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

Super Bowl winner Joe Flacco got $52 million guaranteed in the six-year, $120.6 million contract he signed with Baltimore this month.

‘‘I think it’s just exciting more than anything that you know you’re going to be here the rest of my career,’’ Romo said in a video on the team’s website. ‘‘We’re a team on the rise and I think it’s going to show here going forward.’’

Romo could be with Dallas through 2019, giving him a chance to be the starter longer than the 11 seasons of Aikman and seven of Staubach, who was a part-time starter his first four years with the Cowboys.

Aikman and Staubach won five Super Bowls between them, while Romo has just one playoff win in six full seasons as the starter. He had a gut-wrenching playoff loss the year he took over midseason in 2006, flubbing the hold after driving the Cowboys into position for the go-ahead field goal in the final minutes.


Romo alluded to changes ‘‘behind the scenes’’ in the interview on the team’s website, and Jones said in a statement that his quarterback will have ‘‘a significant level of input and contribution to the planning and implementing of our offensive approach — both in the meeting room and on the field.’’

‘‘Tony is uniquely qualified to lead this team at the quarterback position for the next several years,’’ Jones said. ‘‘He knows how to run an offense and run a team.’’

Romo lost playoff-or-bust games in regular-season finales the past two years, including a loss to Washington last season when Romo threw an interception.

A former Romo rival, Donovan McNabb, questioned the deal.

‘‘Wow really, with one playoff win,’’ McNabb wrote on Twitter. ‘‘You got to be kidding me.’’


Romo is the franchise leader in touchdown passes and the single-season leader in touchdowns, passing yards, completions, and attempts. He had a career-high 4,903 passing yards in 2012, but matched his highest interception total at 19 and had his lowest quarterback rating at 90.5 rating.

Raiders eye QB Flynn

The Raiders have been talking to Seattle about acquiring quarterback Matt Flynn, and, according to, are expected to complete a trade shortly.

Oakland is looking for options to replace Carson Palmer, who is to make $13 million for 2013 and has balked at a pay cut.

Meanwhile, with the emergence of Russell Wilson, the Seahawks don’t need to pay their backup $5 million. Seattle will consider Tyler Thigpen, sources said.

Once Palmer is released, the Cardinals are expected to have interest in him. The Jaguars and Bills are also open to adding a veteran quarterback.

Bears beef up line

The Bears and Matt Slauson agreed to a one-year contract, the guard leaving the Jets despite starting 48 of 51 games in his three years with the Jets. The Bears also agreed to terms on a one-year contract with 33-year-old quarterback Josh McCown, who spent parts of the last two seasons with the team . . . After exploring options with the Bills and Jets, tight end Fred Davis re-signed with the Redskins, agreeing to a one-year deal.

NAU denies Cardinals

Northern Arizona University has rescinded its offers for the Cardinals to conduct training camp on the Flagstaff campus. The Arizona Daily Sun reported Friday that NAU president John Haeger says the school isn’t interested in a short-term deal with the NFL team. With the exception of one year when an illness outbreak forced a move to Prescott, the Cardinals have trained on the NAU campus since 1988, the year the franchise moved from St. Louis. The Cardinals now are talking with Glendale about moving their training camp to University of Phoenix Stadium and the nearby Glendale Youth Sports Complex . . . Hall of Fame defensive back Lem Barney filed a discrimination lawsuit against a Detroit health system, alleging he was fired because of his age. Barney, 67, alleges that his supervisor at Detroit Medical Center once asked him, ‘‘Why don’t you just retire already?’’ after noting he was in his 60s and made a lot of money playing professional football. Barney also said he ran afoul of a supervisor by signing too many autographs for Lions fans. Barney was fired in February, just weeks after returning to work after back surgery, following two demotions. At the time, the lawsuit alleges, his pay had been cut from $80,000 per year to $30,000, and he was reduced to handing out parking passes to patients’ families.