Romo grew up in Wisconsin, excelling in sports at Burlington High School, and played collegiately at Eastern Illinois University, where he broke school and conference records as a passer and earned the Walter Payton Award. While at Eastern Illinois, he was also highly active in his fraternity, Sigma Pi. He was brought in by the Cowboys in the 2003 training camp as an undrafted rookie free agent, and is now the starting quarterback.
After the Cowboys signed Vinny Testaverde and traded for Drew Henson, the team released Chad Hutchinson, and it appeared that Romo would follow, as most NFL teams keep only three quarterbacks. However, Quincy Carter, the incumbent first string quarterback, would later be released, and Romo remained the third-string quarterback behind Testaverde and Henson.
Romo had a strong showing in the 2005 preseason, especially when compared to Henson's performance, and he would be named the second-string backup behind current starter Drew Bledsoe.
In the 2006 preseason, Romo had one of the best games in his career against the Seattle Seahawks. Romo's performance had many experts wondering if Romo's time to replace Bledsoe at quarterback would be sooner rather than later. One particularly impressive play in the Seattle game was when he ran after a high snap, picked it up, started running to avoid a sack, and heaved a 30 yard reception to Terrence Copper; Romo made a big gain out of a play that is normally a 10-yard loss or turnover.
Romo's first NFL pass resulted in a 34 yard reception to Sam Hurd vs. the Houston Texans on October 15, 2006. During the same game, Romo threw his first NFL touchdown pass to Terrell Owens. Romo replaced Drew Bledsoe for the start of the 2nd half on October 23, 2006 in Monday Night Football. His first pass was a tipped pass intercepted by the New York Giants. He would later throw another touchdown to Terrell Owens and score the two point conversion himself by rushing into the end zone on a quarterback draw play, although in the final minutes of the fourth quarter Romo would throw a goal line interception that was returned for a touchdown by Kevin Dockery. His game stats in only his second NFL appearance were: 14 completions on 25 attempts for 227 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 3 interceptions. Two days later, on October 25, Cowboys head coach Bill Parcells announced that Romo would be the starting quarterback for their October 29 game against the Carolina Panthers on Sunday Night Football. Romo went 24 of 36 for 270 yards, one touchdown, and one interception as the Cowboys went on to win 35-14. In that game, Romo was the Sunday Night Football's "Rock Star Of The Game". Romo appeared at the post game press conference wearing an extremely faded sleeveless "Burlington" tee shirt, an obvious holdover from his highschool days. When asked how did he feel about going out there against one of the NFL's toughest defenses he replied with, "Go out there and treat it like practice, it sounds cliche' but its true, because you're running the same routes against the same defensive schemes. So theres no reason you should let the nerves really get to you."
He is also an avid amateur golfer, and attempted to qualify for the 2004 EDS Byron Nelson Championship and the 2005 U.S. Open, but missed the cut. During the offseason, when not training, he is known to play golf around Dallas and is also a frequent guest on local sports radio programs. Beginning in 2006, Tony Romo has been the co-host of "Inside the Huddle", a one-hour player commentary show that airs on ESPN Radio on KESN-FM in Dallas along with linebacker Bradie James.
He is beloved by his alma mater, which has few professional athletes. Mike Shanahan, coach of the Denver Broncos, also played quarterback for Eastern Illinois University. In addition to Shanahan, Sean Payton and Brad Childress have played for the university.
|3 year NFL career||38||337||220||65.3||2903||8.61||19||13||21||56||95.1|
|3 year NFL career||38||36||100||2.8||0||0|
Fumble Recovery Stats
|3 year NFL career||38||8||0||0||0||0|