With Romo’s back bro­ken, Prescott will start against Gi­ants in Week 1

Metro USA (New York) - - Sports -

Dal­las Cow­boys quar­ter­back Tony Romo suf­fered a bro­ken bone in his back on the third play of Thurs­day night’s pre­sea­son game and coach Ja­son Gar­rett said the in­jury would cost the veteran a chunk of the 2016 sea­son.

An MRI on Fri­day re­vealed Romo’s back in­jury is much worse than an­tic­i­pated, Gar­rett an­nounced Satur­day, two days af­ter he was knocked out of the game against the Seat­tle Sea­hawks.

“We’re con­fi­dent that he’s go­ing to be com­ing back and play­ing foot­ball for us this year,” Gar­rett said but pro­vided no timetable on Romo’s pos­si­ble re­turn.

A source told NFL Me­dia’s Ian Rapoport that the best-case sce­nario for Romo’s re­turn is dur­ing the mid­dle of the sea­son.

Romo un­der­went a pair of back surg­eries in 2013 and he missed most of last sea­son with a twice-bro­ken left col­lar­bone. Gar­rett said the in­jury is not re­lated to the surg­eries Romo had in 2013.

On Dal­las’ third of­fen­sive play on Thurs­day night, Romo scram­bled from the pocket, then went into a slide near the line of scrim­mage. He was crunched by Sea­hawks de­fen­sive end Cliff Avril from the blind side.

Af­ter stay­ing on the turf ini­tially, Romo walked off on his own. He threw some passes on the side­line but was held out for the rest of the game by Gar­rett af­ter lob­by­ing to re­turn. Romo com­pleted his lone pass of the game for 11 yards.

“I was go­ing into a slide,” Romo said af­ter the 27-17 loss to the Sea­hawks. “But in a weird way, I feel good about the fact that was prob­a­bly as tough of a hit I’ve taken on the back as I’ve had in the last five years.

“From that re­gard, I feel very lucky that it can hold up and I can keep go­ing.”

Rookie fourth-round pick Dak Prescott likely will start the reg­u­larsea­son opener against the New York Gi­ants on Sept. 11 if Romo is ruled out.

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