- Todd Archer, ESPN Staff Writer
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But the Dallas Cowboys Hall of Fame quarterback does not want to see Romo and Manziel on the same team.
Recent talk has the Cowboys interested in picking up Manziel in the first round of next week's draft, ranging from doing anything they can to get him to hoping that he would fall close to the 16th pick. On 105.3 The Fan in Dallas on Monday, executive vice president Stephen Jones said any interest in Manziel is "purely speculation,” and that the team has yet to rate the quarterback position as a group.
Romo, who turned 34 last week, is coming off his second back surgery in less than a year, but he has been involved in the offseason conditioning program in the last two weeks and is expected to be ready for on-field work when Phase 2 of the offseason begins.
"I try to make people understand that if you brought Tom Brady here last year or Peyton Manning or Andrew Luck, it's a team effort and you need a solid defense or you're going to be 8-8,” Staubach said. "If we had a really good defense we would've been 11-5 easily, I think. I hope (Romo) has three, four more years left in him. The people that really understand football understand how good he is but those with second opinions would be screaming for Manziel all the time.
"I think Manziel has got great instincts. I think he'll be a fine player, but I don't think you want a Manziel when you have a franchise quarterback. Jerry has paid (Romo) as a franchise. I think Tony is that. He's not the reason we're 8-8.That's my feeling.”
To Staubach, a quarterback controversy is the quickest way to hurt a team.
In 1971, coach Tom Landry had Staubach and Craig Morton alternating series before settling on Staubach, and the Cowboys went on to win their first Super Bowl.
"We probably had half of the people want Craig on the field and half of them wanted me, and even teammates might've felt the same if you polled the team early in the year when Craig and I were going back and forth,” Staubach said. "Whoever's going to be the quarterback, you need a quarterback that's the leader and the person in place. Coach, God love him, but that kind of divided the team. You don't want to divide the team on your quarterback. That would be wherever Manziel goes. He's going to get a chance to be a starter. That's what he wants. I think he deserves that. I think he's got that starting quarterback talent.”