A week from tomorrow, the Miami Dolphins and Dallas Cowboys will face off in the first preseason game of the 2013 NFL schedule, heading to Canton, Ohio to face off in the annual Hall of Fame Game. With each team having four more exhibition games after this one, the contest on August 4 will likely be more of a nationally televised scrimmage than anything else, with just the first series for both teams likely including the starters.
However, it now appears the Dallas starters will be without one key member, quarterback Tony Romo.
"It's one of those deals where I suppose he could play five plays or whatever, but we might lean to no plays,'' Dallas head coach Jason Garrett told 105.3 The Fan today at the team's training camp in Oxnard, California. "But the clock starts on our ‘1's' [first-teamers] in Week 2 of the preseason. So that's not going to be Tony's game.''
"That's going to be a Nick Stephens game and an Alex Tanney game,'' Garrett continued.
The Cowboys currently have four quarterbacks: Romo, backup Kyle Orton, Stephens, and rookie Tanney. With no mention of Orton, Garrett could also be saying the Cowboys will only use their third and fourth quarterbacks during the game.
Romo had offseason surgery on a cyst on his back, so the move could simply be to prevent him from taking any hits this early in camp, although he has taken part in every drill thus far with no limitations.
The move really has no bearing on the game, given the few snaps starters are expected to take. However, those few snaps against a starting level quarterback, other than Ryan Tannehill and Matt Moore, could have been beneficial for the Miami defense. If Orton does play for the Cowboys, he has started 69 games in his career, which would at least be better for the Dolphins than a top defense playing against a couple of quarterbacks with a combined zero appearances at the NFL level.