this week on A Cowboy Life, Tony shares his story about the man who helped shape the quarterback we know today, and ultimately, began to shape the Dallas Cowboys.

Our time with Tony began with his beginning, growing up in Wisconsin with a passion for sport. He cut his teeth playing little league baseball, and moved into Football, Golf, Basketball, and Tennis in high school. But his love of the game led him to Eastern Illinois University, where he played for the NCAA Division I-AA Eastern Illinois Panthers Football team.

But a spectacular college career (and the Walter Payton award) wasn’t enough to carry him into the draft, and he went undrafted – up until he got picked up by the Cowboys, courtesy of scout Jim Hess, who was kind enough to recall how he discovered Tony Romo on the podcast with us. And it was on a shuttle bus to Rookie Mini-Camp that he would meet #82 himself, tight end Jason Witten.

The two quickly found a respect in each other, and after a particularly candid conversation about their current surroundings and some culinary crossed signals, found that their chemistry off the field carried over onto the gridiron, too. But simply playing the game wasn’t the only hurdle Tony and Jason had to get over. Tony recalls the time he and Wit tried to convince Coach Bill Parcells not to retire, and digs into a particularly hairy game against the Detroit Lions that had Jason saving the day, once again.

Through their time with the Cowboys, Tony and Jason lifted each other up, and by doing so, elevated America’s Team to a place it hadn’t been in a generation. Their impact on the Dallas Cowboys is undeniable, and the echoes of their leadership can still be felt across the franchise. Without Jason Witten, and without Tony Romo, the Dallas Cowboys just wouldn’t be the same.

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