The Dallas Cowboys' impressive return to form in the 2014 NFL season was possible thanks to a mixture of rising young stars playing alongside older heads hitting form at the right time.
One of those veteran figures was Tony Romo - the quarterback fighting off injury to record career highs in passing percentage and QBR.
All good things must come to an end though and, now aged 35 and with a recent history peppered with injury concerns, many believe Romo's time under center in Dallas is reaching it's natural end. Try telling that to Cowboys owner Jerry Jones though who made the following bold prediction today.
Speaking to KNWA-TV, Jones was adamant his veteran quarterback could go on for some years yet:
"We're a few years off with Tony Romo in my mind...I look at him and I see five years and maybe more."
"He's right at the apex of when he can be the most effective. But it is time (to look for another quarterback), give us an opportunity."
With his 2014 form fresh in the memory and his in-game relationship with with star wide receiver Dez Bryant at an all-time high, Cowboys fans will be delighted to see Jones envisaging another half-decade of Tony Romo time.
Furthermore, if we are to believe the owner's comments about Romo's "apex", then the 2015 season could kick off that five-year plan in style.
Whether it is possible, or indeed preferable, for that plan to play out only time will tell. His injury-hit past makes Dallas fans want to wrap him up in cotton wool at this stage of his career - we can't imagine what they'd be like if he was stepping out onto the gridiron after celebrating his fourth decade on Earth.
So, although Jones may be hoping he won't have to call on a new quarterback for some time yet, there has to be a plan in place if Dallas are going to be afforded a relatively stress-free succession to the QB thrown.
There is a belief that the Dallas Cowboys will look to this, the 2015 NFL Draft, to recruit a possible Tony Romo successor.
Unfortunately, with the pick likely not coming until the late rounds, it is virtually impossible to second guess just who that man might be. Jerry Jones isn't worried though, believing star quality is available right through the draft:
"We had a Cinderella story with a free agent, much less drafting one, with Tony Romo. So those guts do show up down at the bottom of the draft, or they show up out in free agency."
Cowboys fans: Would you be happy to have Romo stay on for five more seasons, or is it time to plan for the future? Let us know in the comments section below...
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