Tony Romo's absence keeps Brandon Weeden sharp


OXNARD, Calif. -- Brandon Weeden was like everybody else. The Dallas Cowboys backup quarterback did not know Tony Romo would miss Friday’s practice until he got on the practice field.

Romo had a sty below his left eye treated Friday afternoon and he will be re-evaluated Saturday to determine whether he can practice.

With Romo out, Weeden took the first-team snaps.

“For me it’s a good thing you don’t know,” Weeden said. “It’s like a game. Going into the game you have no idea if you’ll play then or 10 weeks from now. You’ve got to be on your toes.”

Saturday will be the first full-padded practice of camp. The Cowboys finished two days of workouts in which the offense and defense did not compete against each other in drills.

“I love these days because you get your feet back acclimated,” Weeden said. “We can do all the work in the offseason we want but out there you got your helmet on, you’ve got guys running routes full speed. It’s different. It’s good to get reps with all these guys, especially [the first-teamers] and some of those young guys as well.”

Last year Weeden took all of the first-team snaps in the offseason as Romo recovered from back surgery. In training camp Romo did not practice more than two straight days. During the season he took the first-team snaps on Wednesdays when Romo rested.

This summer the Cowboys will monitor Romo’s work but the quarterback expects to get more practice time.

“Tony’s been around this a long time,” Weeden said. “He knows his body better than anybody and he doesn’t need to come out here and work every single day. He’s got his game right, so, yeah, it’s great for me. It just kind of keeps me sharp on a day-to-day basis.”