Romo on the verge

Tony Romo will try to qualify for the U.S. Open on Monday during a sectionals tournament.

It will not conflict with any of the Cowboys' workouts so there should be no concern about his commitment to football.

Inside the Cowboys' organization the team has never been more pleased with Romo's dedication and development as its quarterback.

"He's light years for the positive away from where he was two years ago," owner Jerry Jones said of Romo.

Said tight end Jason Witten: "He just keeps getting better."

Even coach Wade Phillips chimed in on Romo's transformation from gunslinger to quarterback and leader of the Cowboys.

The Cowboys are in their third week of organized team activities, and the head coach knows that Romo is in command of the offense.

"Tony's very comfortable," Phillips said. "Just seeing him out there very comfortable at his position and his stature within the team as far as leadership is concerned. I think he feels like the other guys are going to look up to him and he'll say or do the right things as far as leadership."

--RB Marion Barber has lost 10 pounds and is quicker and more explosive than he has been in past years. It's his way of trying to avoid injuries and prolong his career amid questions that he will lose his starting job to Felix Jones.

"Marion is very deliberate," Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said. "Nothing happens by accident with Marion Barber. So I'm confident that 90 percent of what you see is Marion Barber deciding that I can do a better job (by getting) a little lighter. Marion is someone who is very responsible, is a veteran, been through more collisions than most backs, real collisions, so he's got a Harvard business degree on how to do it and what he wants to get done."

--Wide Receiver Dez Bryant continues to draw attention away from football.

Now he is in the middle of a shoe battle between Nike and Under Armour.

The rookie receiver signed a marketing deal with Under Armour before the draft, but has worn Nike since having problems with his footing at his pro day in April. Bryant has worn Nike during all of his practices with the Cowboys without incident. He said he still hasn't made a final decision.

"It's a business decision," Bryant said. "We are just going to see what we are going to do."

Former Cowboy Eric Ogbogu, who helped bring the company prominence with his "We must protect this house" commercials, came to a Cowboys' practice to try to reel him back in.

"I just came to see where his head was at and what the problem is," Ogbogu said. "As a former player, maybe I can understand where he is coming from."

QUOTE TO NOTE: "There is a lot of excitement when he does it the right way. What we really like about him is he is such a good kid. He is willing and eager and enthusiastic about playing football. He has a good football IQ. But he is so eager to get better. He is fun to be around." -- Offensive coordinator Jason Garrett when asked if the Cowboys were giving Dez Bryant too much praise.

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