The latest chapter of the Tony Romo Injury Saga is playing out just like the original script of 2015. Just like last year, there is hope in Dallas for a Romo return, with the Cowboys quarterback getting pegged for a timetable of six to 10 weeks originally and now having his timeline shifted a little bit.

The term “IR” is being thrown around now by the Dallas front office, with Stephen Jones saying, via the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, that the team is handling the situation as best it can.

“We’re certainly getting our hands around it,” Jones said. “We’ll be needing to make that decision obviously sometime later in the weekend. Whatever we do with him, he’ll need to be on our 53 when we cut it on Friday. So you’ve got to have him through the 53 cut before you can put him on designated to return, if we wanted to consider that. But it may be that we just keep him on the roster. We’ll just see.”

The Star-Telegram believes the initial timeline of 6-10 weeks for a Romo return, as reported by CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora, is now on the back end of that timeline. It’s more likely Romo is back in 8-10 weeks.

And this is not the same back injury Romo played through previously in his career, either.

The Star-Telegram reports that in this particular case, the “bone must fully heal” — Romo can’t just magically come back from injury and play through pain.

This is where designated-for-return IR comes into play. The Cowboys have to walk a bit of a tightrope here.

Putting Romo on designated IR would mean he can’t return any sooner than Nov. 6 against the Browns, the Cowboys eighth game of the season.

The Cowboys are still clearly holding out hope, however, with Jones calling the injury a “freak” thing, even though it keeps happening to the same guy.

“He’s very driven, driven to do what it takes to get back,” Jones said. “We’ve really done a lot of research on this, and I think this was a very freak accident. It’s unfortunate for Tony that he has some of these things, but I think the last thing in the world we’re worried about with Tony is being fragile. Everybody saw the hit and the tackle. It was awkward. I think most doctors would tell you that whoever that would have been would have had a hard time coming through that without some sort of injury.

“He is undeterred, and he really believes that this team does have a different mindset with him not being here and that we can win games and when he does get back, he’s ready to make a run. I think Tony is more prepared to have success in this league than he’s ever been. The key word, as he well knows, is he’s got to stay healthy and he’s got to be able to play, but if he does that, mentally and his knowledge of this game and what our offense is about, I think is the best it’s ever been. So we just look forward to winning some football games as we move forward. When Tony gets back, the team will be ready for him.”

The team’s got Dak Prescott to man things, and Ezekiel Elliott looks like the real deal. The Cowboys can fashion an offense together for a while. But if Romo is forced to sit out half a season — at bare minimum — Dallas’ fate may already be decided by the time he’s able to come back.

Source: CBS Sports / Cowboys mull roster options with Tony Romo likely out 8-10 weeks