2013 Fantasy Football Draft Day: Why Does Fantasyland Hate Tony Romo?

By Dustin Manko
Tony Romo
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Draft day is all about value. Drafts are won and lost based as much on whom you get as they are when you get them. The savvy drafter knows what off brand names are going to deliver similar results as the name brand products. It’s all about value. It’s hard to call someone who routinely hits the 4,000 yard plateau a sleeper, so let’s use the term undervalued. Tony Romo is undervalued.

On average, Romo currently has an ADP in the 70-80 range. He’s ranked as a QB12 on more than a few boards, one of which had Jay Cutler ahead of him. Yeah, Jay Cutler. Really. I think one of the primary reasons is because Romo does have the “choker” label. He may have a 1-3 record in the playoffs or a 1-6 record in elimination games, but this is fantasy. We don’t care about wins and losses; we care about pure stats.

So let’s look at a few stats then. Romo threw for more yards last season (4,903) than Aaron Rodgers (4,295). He attempted more passes per game (40.5) than Peyton Manning (36.4), and completed more passes (425) than everyone except for Matt Stafford (435). He threw for at least 250 yards and a TD in 12 games. Romo also finished third in passing yards per game (306.4).

Don’t forget that Romo has weapons. Dez Bryant is going to challenge Calvin Johnson as one of the premier wide receivers in the game. Miles Austin can still run like the wind. Jason Witten is coming off a season where he set the single season record for receptions by a tight end (110). DeMarco Murray, although brittle, can dominate when healthy. I have little doubt that as long as Romo stays healthy, he will get over 30 touchdowns and 4,700 yards.

There are concerns, however. Romo’s offensive line has relatively little experience playing together. Despite that, Romo will stand in the pocket, knowing full well that he’s about to get drilled and deliver the strike. He will have at least one terrible, multi-interception game. However, in most scoring systems touchdowns help more than interceptions hurt, and Romo will hang in there, doing his best Brett Favre impersonation and sling one deep. The reward outweighs the risk here.

I’m sure I’m going to take some flak for this, but I have Romo ahead of Colin Kaepernick, Tom Brady, Robert Griffin III, and neck and neck with Peyton Manning this year. Brady has the advantage of playing in a weak division but is with the weakest receiving corps he’s had in years. Kaepernick and Griffin will not be running as much as everyone thinks they will be. Both Manning and Brady should have leads in most of their games (resulting in a heavier run volume) as well as their division wrapped up early (resulting in them possibly not playing deep into games, or at all). On the other hand, Romo and the Dallas Cowboys are in a division where it traditionally goes down to the last game of the year to determine a winner. He will be in the game all the way down to the end.

He might not be the quarterback you build your real life franchise around, but Romo has everything you would want from your fantasy quarterback. You are poised to have a solid return on your investment this season with Romo. After all, how many other eighth round picks have the potential to finish in the top five at their position?

As always, I welcome your comments. If you think I’m wrong, I’m willing to listen. Just back it up with some facts and solid evidence. Thanks for reading and good luck this season.

Dustin Manko is a contributing writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @DustinManko,”Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google

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