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Romo Returns to Cowboys

Updated: Tuesday, July 23 2013, 07:32 PM CDT

Tony Romo was waiting in California when the Dallas Cowboys arrived for training camp.

Romo, who didn't take a real snap in offseason workouts after signing the richest contract in franchise history, finally returned for the first training camp practices Sunday after "uniquely running mountains" on the West Coast.

That's how owner Jerry Jones described his quarterback's efforts to get back in shape after a procedure to have a cyst removed from his back in April.

Romo says he tried to cram a full offseason of conditioning into the last month and a half, including what he called some "boot camp" training in California in the week and a half before his teammates joined him.

"I worked as hard as I could," Romo said. "I took that approach every day I woke up. I had to improve not just a little but a lot each day. I think that helped me get ready for today and hopefully for the beginning of the season."

It's been 10 years since Romo joined the Cowboys as an undrafted free agent out of Eastern Illinois, but he's not at the bottom of the depth chart anymore. Now he signs autographs on his way to the field for practice, then has all his throws analyzed by sideline observers looking for the slightest hint of how much the down time in the spring affected him.

And that's seven weeks before the start of the regular season.

"He'll tell you right now he just has to continue do the conditioning stuff necessary," coach Jason Garrett said. "When you're coming off an injury, that's always a big concern. You're trying to get the injured healed, but you've got make sure the conditioning is right. He's worked very hard at it."

Romo was an active observer during workouts at team headquarters in May and June, part of an expanding role that Jones first alluded to in a statement the day Romo signed a six-year, $108 million contract with $55 million guaranteed - $3 million more than Super Bowl winner Joe Flacco got from Baltimore.

After finally acknowledging that he would be active in game-planning in an interview the week before camp, Romo flashed a little leadership while walking off the field at the end of Sunday's first practice.

It was just a walkthrough, and Romo was engaged in a detailed discussion with second-year tight end James Hanna as he walked through a crowd of reporters, pausing briefly to say he would talk to them later.

"We're just making a real conscious effort as an organization to say, `Hey, let's get more out of this situation. Let's get more out of this guy' because we believe so strongly in him," Garrett said. "And it's been a real positive change for our football team."

The Cowboys said the decision to hold Romo out of offseason workouts was mostly precautionary, but Garrett said the recovery was a little tricky because it involved his back, which required him to be immobile.

Romo said it was just strange not to be able to throw.

"I used to throw for 345 days a year because I felt like you couldn't duplicate those days you missed," he said. "Every day you missed, I felt like I needed seven straight days to get back. I don't know that you can ever get that back. Saying that, I did everything I could to get myself ready to go."

The Cowboys will keep him on a football version of a pitch count, although they don't have any precise numbers and will simply be watching him closely.

"It's more communication, `How you feeling?'" Garrett said. "And you also look at the ball. Does the ball look a little dead or tired? We'll communicate each and every day to come up with our plan."

But he's finished with his personal boot camp in the mountains.

-AP

Romo Returns to Cowboys


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Scores & Schedules

January 25, 2015 08:10 GMT

Latest scores; Upcoming games

NBA

Saturday's Games

Charlotte 76, New York 71

Milwaukee 101, Detroit 86

Memphis 101, Philadelphia 83

Utah 108, Brooklyn 73

Portland 103, Washington 96

Sunday's Games

Miami at Chicago, 1 p.m.

Oklahoma City at Cleveland, 3:30 p.m.

L.A. Clippers at Phoenix, 6 p.m.

Dallas at New Orleans, 6 p.m.

Minnesota at Atlanta, 6 p.m.

Indiana at Orlando, 6 p.m.

Milwaukee at San Antonio, 7 p.m.

Detroit at Toronto, 7 p.m.

Boston at Golden State, 8 p.m.

Washington at Denver, 8 p.m.

Houston at L.A. Lakers, 9:30 p.m.

TOP 25 MEN'S BASKETBALL

Saturday's Games

( 1) Kentucky 58, South Carolina 43

( 3) Gonzaga 91, Pacific 60

( 6) Wisconsin 69, Michigan 64, OT

( 7) Arizona 73, California 50

Texas Tech 78, ( 9) Iowa St. 73

(11) Kansas 75, (17) Texas 62

(15) North Carolina 78, Florida St. 74

(18) West Virginia 86, TCU 85, OT

(21) Baylor 69, (19) Oklahoma 58

(22) Dayton 63, Richmond 60

Purdue 67, (25) Iowa 63

Sunday's Games

( 2) Virginia at Virginia Tech, 1 p.m.

( 4) Villanova vs. Creighton, 7 p.m.

( 5) Duke vs. St. John's at Madison Square Garden, 2 p.m.

( 8) Notre Dame at N.C. State, 6:30 p.m.

(10) Louisville at Pittsburgh, 4 p.m.

(12) Utah vs. Washington, 8:30 p.m.

(13) Maryland vs. Northwestern, 7:30 p.m.

(14) Wichita State vs. Drake, 1 p.m.

(20) Northern Iowa at Illinois State, 4 p.m.

(23) Indiana at Ohio State, 1:30 p.m.

(24) Seton Hall at Butler, 3 p.m.

TOP 25 WOMEN'S BASKETBALL

Saturday's Games

( 3) Baylor 68, Kansas St. 46

( 6) Notre Dame 74, Clemson 36

UTSA 64, (24) W. Kentucky 63

Sunday's Games

( 2) UConn at Cincinnati, 3 p.m.

( 4) Louisville vs. Miami, 5 p.m.

( 5) Tennessee vs. (22) Georgia, 2 p.m.

( 7) Maryland at Indiana, 3 p.m.

( 8) Texas vs. Iowa State, 4:30 p.m.

( 9) Oregon State at (13) Arizona State, 4 p.m.

(11) Stanford at Southern Cal, 8 p.m.

(12) North Carolina vs. (15) Duke, 5 p.m.

(14) Kentucky at Missouri, 4 p.m.

(17) Florida State vs. Wake Forest, 2 p.m.

(21) Minnesota at (25) Rutgers, 5:15 p.m.

(23) Syracuse vs. N.C. State, 3 p.m.

NFL

Saturday

No games scheduled

Sunday's Game

AFC vs. NFC Pro Bowl at Glendale, Ariz., 8 p.m.

NHL

Saturday

No games scheduled

Sunday's Game

All-Star game at Columbus, Ohio, 5 p.m.

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KEYE-TV Sports Team


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