LeBron: Romo should tune out critics

Updated: February 19, 2014, 12:50 PM ET
By Calvin Watkins | ESPNDallas.com

DALLAS -- Even though Tony Romo wouldn't discuss his recovery from back surgery with reporters Tuesday night at American Airlines Center, where the Mavericks were hosting the Miami Heat, a famous fan of his talked about the Dallas Cowboys adding a player at Romo's position and offered the oft-criticized quarterback advice on dealing with expectations.

LeBron James, who is an avid Cowboys fan, said he would be in favor of the team drafting Johnny Manziel if he is available when Dallas picks No. 16 overall. James also said the team's current quarterback should focus on his performance and not what others think of it.

JamesJust don't care what everybody thinks. If you care about your craft and at the end of the day if you went out there and you gave it everything you had ... you can sleep comfortably at night.

-- LeBron James' advice for Tony Romo

Romo, who attended Tuesday's game with his father, pulled James aside as he was walking off the court. Afterward, James declined to share details of the brief conversation. But when approached by ESPN.com after he spoke with James, Romo was quick to share his message.

"I just told him, 'You go get [championship] No. 3 for y'all, and I'll go get No. 1 for us," Romo said. "He's an unbelievable player, and I just enjoy watching him."

Before the game, James said it "would be great" if the Cowboys landed Manziel.

"It's a winning franchise," he said prior to scoring a season-high 42 points in the Heat's 117-106 victory over the Mavs, "and Johnny Football is an unbelievable football player."

Many draft trackers project the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner as a top-five pick, and the Cowboys have already said it's doubtful they will use a first-round pick on a quarterback.

[+] EnlargeTony Romo
AP Photo/Alex BrandonLeBron James says Dallas' Tony Romo needs to channel the work ethic that helped make him one of the "greatest quarterbacks we have" in the game.

As for Romo, James had advice for dealing with such high expectations.

"Just don't care what everybody thinks," he said. "If you care about your craft and at the end of the day if you went out there and you gave it everything you had and you laid it out on the line for your teammates, you can sleep comfortably at night. Don't watch ESPN and all these so-called 'everyone knows what to do that ain't never put on a uniform, trying to tell you what to do' [shows].

"It's not about that. I think Tony's at a point now in his career where he's one of the greatest quarterbacks we have in our game because of his work ethic. Nobody woke him up in the morning to go to practice. Nobody told him to go to OTAs. Nobody told him to stay after practice and throw to his receivers. He just goes out there and does it. We all make mistakes, but at the end of the day, if you work on your game, you can live with that."

ESPN.com NBA reporter Michael Wallace contributed to this report.

Calvin Watkins joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He's covered the Cowboys since 2006 and also has covered colleges, boxing and high school sports.

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