Romo raves about facing Favre

Tony Romo will get a chance to upstage his boyhood idol, Brett Favre, when the two quarterbacks square off against each other Sunday in the NFC playoffs. Romo made no secret of his respect for Favre this week. Plus, a Dallas defender shot back at Favre with his own bit of bravado.

The Vikings-Cowboys matchup in the NFC divisional playoffs presents a dream-come-true scenario for Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo.

Romo grew up in Wisconsin idolizing Packers quarterback Brett Favre. He even patterned his game after Favre, who came out of retirement in the offseason to join the Vikings for one last run at glory.

"The fact that you win you go on, you lose you go home – that's all that really needs to be said," said Favre, 40, who is bidding to become the oldest quarterback to start and win a playoff game.

"I'm well aware of how hard it is to get here. I'm well aware of the opportunity. It's why I came back. So to be sitting here playing in this game, I'm not surprised by it. I expected it, I know how hard it is. Now, I have no idea what will happen Sunday. I have my thoughts and hopes, but also this very well could be (my last chance)."

Said Romo: "I think any time you're playing in this type of game, it's going to be special. I like Brett. He's fun to hang out with and talk to and stuff. I think we're both going to be trying to win this game, for sure."

Romo admitted that he picked up a few things from Favre along the way but downplays the similarities between the two, saying there is only one Brett Favre.

"Well, I mean, Brett's in a class by himself," Romo said. "No one is really similar to him. A lot of people try to create some similarities, but when he's done, you're not going to see a guy like him. That's a testament to how great he's been for so long."

Favre, however, doesn't deny the similarities. He has become a friend and confidant to Romo over the years.

"The similarities would be improvising and making plays, extending the play and using your feet," Favre said. "His excitement and passion for the game is obvious. I think it's real genuine I think that what people like. I think people like to see that. They like to see the realness from any player. When you watch Tony you see that."

Favre certainly likes what he sees in Romo. He said Romo needs to continue to be a playmaker and quit worrying about critics who tell him to be a game manager.

"I think Tony needs to play exactly the way he's played," Favre said. "He does not need to worry about what other people think of him. I don't think (Cowboys owner) Jerry Jones would take anyone else at any time other than Tony Romo, and that's the way it should be. Tony, I think he knows that. I think his confidence is proof of that. He is what he is. He makes plays that other people wouldn't make, that other people wouldn't attempt to make and that's what makes him a special player. Don't change that. He is playing at a really high level. He has nothing to prove."

What Romo needs to prove now is that he can beat his idol playing his game at his house in a winner-take-all battle of the playoffs. Romo said the better quarterback will likely win and neither will leave anything for chance.

"I think you've got to be able to make plays," Romo said. "You have to try and minimize turnovers, but you have to have to try to make plays. You have a good combination there of knowing when to do what, I guess. I think it's important, obviously, that the quarterback plays well in the postseason."

NOTES

  • RB Marion Barber practiced on a limited basis on Thursday but should be ready to play and start against the Vikings after sitting out most of the Eagles game with a swollen bursa sack in his left knee.

  • SS Pat Watkins (knee) practiced and will be active for the Vikings game. He missed the last three games with a knee injury but will return to action because he is one of the team's best special-teams players.

  • SS Gerald Sensabaugh took issue with Vikings quarterback Brett Favre talking about having a press conference next week before the NFC Championship Game.

    "Honestly, I see us sitting here next week having this press conference again," Favre told reporters in Minneapolis. "If that doesn't happen, to me it will be a shock."

    Sensabaugh responded with said:

    "Anybody can do a news conference, but you might be on the losing end."

    "They've got one of the best rushers in the league in Adrian Peterson," Sensabaugh said before adding his own boastful comment. "Favre is throwing the ball well. But we have to beat ourselves to lose. The way we're playing right now ... I don't think we can be beat."

  • LB Bobby Carpenter became only the fifth Cowboy to recover two fumbles in a playoff game and also played well against Eagles tight end Brent Celek. He will be challenged again having to guard Vikings tight end Visanthe Shiancoe. Carpenter said he is ready to play hard and perform after being labeled a draft bust all these years.

    "It was nice," Carpenter said. "It's nice to get a little gratification for the work you put in. The attitude I try to take around here is it can all turn with one or two plays. You've just got to keep playing well, preparing. We've got another big test this week, and hopefully I'll be able to prove that I still should be out there."

  • NT Jay Ratliff and LB DeMarcus Ware were honored as first-team All-Pro selections for 2009. It is Ware's third time being named first-team All-Pro. It's the first for Ratliff.

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