Training Camp Analysis: QBs

The Cowboys have been searching for a permanent answer at quarterback since Troy Aikman retired in 2000. Entering the 2007 season, they believe they finally have their man in Tony Romo.

QUARTERBACK: Starter -- Tony Romo. Backups -- Brad Johnson, Matt Baker, Richard Bartel, Matt Moore.

The Cowboys have been searching for a permanent answer at quarterback since Troy Aikman retired in 2000. Entering the 2007 season, they believe they finally have their man in Tony Romo.

After starting 10 games last season and leading the Cowboys to the playoffs, the future seems bright for Romo. However, his continued development is crucial to his and the Cowboys' success in 2007. That will be the focal point of training camp and the preseason.

"It's like a metamorphic change," wide receiver Terrell Owens said last year after the Cowboys made the switch from Drew Bledsoe. "He just knows how to play quarterback."

Romo was named to the Pro Bowl last season after completing 65 percent of his passes for 2,903 yards, 19 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in 11 games (including playoffs) as a starter.

Brad Johnson was brought in to give the Cowboys a veteran alternative in case Romo is injured or falters. But he will be most useful as an experienced sounding board. The Cowboys hope he can teach Romo how to better manage the game and not play so recklessly.

"My role is to be ready to play at any moment and my role will be defined in time," Johnson said after signing with Dallas. "I just want to be there and work hard and hopefully we can win a bunch of ball games.

"Tony knows football we already have a quarterback coach, he doesn't need another coach. My thing is to just work hard in practice and have a great relationship with Tony and hopefully he'll have the greatest year of his life this year and do great things."

Johnson started 15 games last season for the Minnesota Vikings, completing 62 percent of his passes for 2,750 yards, nine touchdowns and 15 interceptions.

Several quarterbacks were brought in this offseason to compete for the No. 3 spot, including former Oregon State signal caller Matt Moore and Matt Baker, who was signed last year as undrafted free agent out of North Carolina.

Moore has shown flashes of solid play through the Cowboys' offseason mini-camps and could have staying power in the NFL.
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