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Romo Could Be Out for the Season

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo broke his left collarbone in Monday night's loss to the New York Giants, an injury that could end his season.

    Romo became the fifth quarterback knocked out by the Giants this season. He won't know a timetable for recovery until more tests are taken Tuesday. Jerry Jones said he was told 6 to 8 weeks, although he noted that Troy Aikman missed only four weeks with a similar injury.

    Whenever Romo's healthy, there may not be any reason to rush back. Only one team in NFL history has recovered from 1-5 -- the Cowboys' worst start since 1989 -- to make the playoffs.

    "It'll be tough," said Romo, who has missed only three games since replacing Drew Bledsoe as Dallas' quarterback in October 2006. "The train keeps going on. The games are going to be played."

    The play came early in the second quarter, with Romo throwing a pass to Miles Austin, then taking a hard hit from blitzing Michael Boley. The linebacker came in unblocked and running at him practically full speed. It was a clean hit, but certainly a kill shot -- Boley was untouched, and Romo was vulnerable after having thrown a pass. He went down hard on his left shoulder and remained flat on his back until helped by trainers.

    "The guard didn't see me," Boley said. "I came in scot-free. ... When he hit the ground, I heard him let out a little scream. I knew something was up, but I didn't think he was going to lay down. I thought it was a normal hit. After I got up and started running, I looked back and saw he was down."

    X-rays showed the break before halftime, but Romo was back on the sideline for the second half, his arm in a sling and covered by a jacket. He wore a headset to stay in tune with the game. When Dallas' first series fizzled, he discussed what went wrong with backup Jon Kitna and looked over pictures of the plays with third-stringer Stephen McGee. He then stood alone and watched the offense go back for its second try.

    The Cowboys actually were up only 10-7 when Romo left and stretched it to 20-7. Then New York scored on its next five possessions, a 31-point flurry that sent home much of the crowd by the middle of the third quarter. The Giants actually were ahead by the time Romo's injury was diagnosed.

    "There's no question we had a letdown when Romo went out of the ballgame," Jones said.

    Romo took every snap last season -- making Kitnathe NFL's only No. 2 quarterback not to play -- and had done so through five games this season.

    Dallas backup Jon Kitna hadn't played since Oct. 5, 2008, when he was part of Detroit's winless season. Whether it was the long layoff, being 38 or both, he sure looked rusty.

    "It just took him awhile to get going," Phillips said. "Once he did, it gave us a chance."

    Kitna was 16 of 33 for 187 yards. He threw a pair of touchdown passes to rookie Dez Bryant in the final 3:17.

    Romo had thrown every pass by a Cowboys quarterback since Nov. 16, 2008, when he returned from a broken pinkie on his throwing hand that cost him three games. Those were the only games he'd missed since replacing Drew Bledsoe as Dallas' quarterback in October 2006.

    He set the franchise record for yards passing in a season last year, making the Pro Bowl for the third time. In his brief action Monday night, he broke his own club record by throwing for a touchdown in his 18th straight game. He was 5 of 7 for 39 yards.

    "It's a shame," Phillips said. "Tony looked like he was really sharp."

     

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