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Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Will Tony Romo's absence be a big deal?

By Calvin Watkins

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo had surgery last month to remove a cyst from his back. It's not considered serious, but Romo will miss the entire organized team activities and maybe the veteran minicamp June 11-13.

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Of course, it's only May, so the Cowboys are being cautious with Romo.

Romo has endured numerous injuries and ailments in his career -- a broken pinkie, punctured lung, cracked ribs and sore back among them. He has returned from all of these injuries and played well.

The removal of the cyst is minor, but it raises questions about the long-term health of the quarterback. While Romo, who just signed a $108 million deal, should be ready for training camp in late July, he'll miss valuable time with the wide receivers and tight ends during the offseason.

The Cowboys have stressed the importance of developing chemistry between the quarterback and receivers, especially after the Cowboys used a second-round draft pick on tight end Gavin Escobar. Jerry Jones wants to the Cowboys to use more two-tight end sets to spread the field, which also should open up things for a running game that finished 31st in the NFL last season.

Romo already has a strong chemistry with tight end Jason Witten and veteran receivers Dez Bryant and Miles Austin. But he won't be around to throw to Escobar, or to have reps with rookie receiver Terrance Williams. That will be missed.

The Cowboys will downplay the severity of the surgery as it's only a cyst. Maybe Romo's inability to participate in OTAs will be downplayed as not a big deal.

But maybe in some ways, it is.

What do you think?