Jay Cutler and Colin Kaepernick might be somewhere smiling today. Tony Romo shocked the NFL world with his decision to leave the Dallas Cowboys for the lead analyst position at CBS. Romo’s decision is one with several ramifications. One of the most overlooked of those ramifications is an expected boost to the free agency market for Jay Cutler and Colin Kaepernick.
Tony Romo was the best available option at quarterback in the eyes of many. The former Dallas Cowboys’ starter had been the subject of several trade rumors throughout the offseason. Once it became clear that the Cowboys were not going to be able to deal Romo to another team, most notably the Denver Broncos and Houston Texans, the choice was obvious. The Cowboys were going to have to release him.
The timing is terrible for the Dallas Cowboys, as they could have cut Tony Romo weeks ago and used the cap space for defensive help. A stalemate ensued. The Cowboys gambled, hoping that either the Broncos or Texans had stepped up to the plate with a trade proposal.
The Texans went as far as dealing their starter (courtesy of SB Nation) Brock Osweiler to the Cleveland Browns in what appears to be a salary dump on the surface. Might the Texans be in the market for an insurance policy at quarterback? They were one of the teams which reached out to Tony Romo regarding his availability.
— Tony Romo (@tonyromo) April 4, 2017
As reported by ESPN, Tony Romo opted for an unofficial retirement versus signing with the Texans. It was a decision that Romo deemed was a smart one.
“It really had nothing to do with the Texans and everything to do with CBS. I felt like it was the right decision. My wife would tell you we’ve had a lot of late nights. It was nice to have some clarity.”
Tony Romo’s smart choice will secretly help the likes of Jay Cutler and Colin Kaepernick.
In terms of talent, Cutler, Kaepernick, and Romo are all arguably part of the same class. They each have strong arms, with a few flaws. Romo gained more attention on the open market because one, he had success as the starting quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys. Secondly, most NFL observers considered Tony Romo as a good character to have in the locker room.
With Romo off the board, Jay Cutler and Colin Kaepernick should move to the front of the line as potential starting quarterbacks. Both the Broncos and Texans could use a veteran passer to help out their Super Bowl chances.
— NFL (@NFL) April 2, 2017
No one will argue that a healthy Tony Romo could have helped the Broncos and Texans. Can the same be said for Jay Cutler and Colin Kaepernick?
Injury could be one of the reasons why the free agency market for Cutler has been lukewarm. Cutler tore his labrum (courtesy of the Chicago Tribune) on his throwing arm in the second half of the season while playing for the Chicago Bears
The timing of the injury could not have been worse for Jay Cutler. After receiving his release from the Bears, Cutler enters free agency for the first time in his career.
Cutler has a stronger arm than Tony Romo, but not the accuracy. With Romo unavailable, Cutler should emerge as a legitimate option for a contender such as the Texans if the NFL draft does not produce a viable choice.
As for Colin Kaepernick, he had a strong yet controversial season with the San Francisco 49ers. Kaepernick threw for 16 touchdowns versus four interceptions last year. He completed 59 percent of his passes, which was close to his career average. That, coupled with Tony Romo’s decision to leave the NFL, will boost his market.
Where the market for Colin Kaepernick may turn into a question mark would be his stance on the National Anthem. Kaepernick’s refusal to stand for the anthem may have cost him in free agency.
Fox Sports‘ Joy Taylor has suggested that Colin Kaepernick may receive some additional phone calls in the wake of Tony Romo leaving the Cowboys and the NFL. One of those phone calls could come from a team he can help, the Houston Texans. The Texans did not trade Brock Osweiler to be shut out on the quarterback market.
Tony Romo’s decision to somewhat retire from the NFL did hurt the Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos, and the Houston Texans. But Romo leaving helps Jay Cutler and Colin Kaepernick. Look for Kaepernick to be the first domino to fall in the quarterback free agency market.
[Featured Image by Tom Pennington/Getty Images]