Fantasy Football Coin Flip: Tony Romo or Matt Schaub?
Arguments can be made for either being a top-five QB in 2009. Schaub puts up top-five numbers on a per-game basis, while Romo was a top-three QB as recently as 2007. Both suffered through a bit of injury in 2008, but which has the best shot at fantasy success. Sean Lalley and I each have our own opinion.
White: Both of these QBs fall into the middle tier, and Romo is normally drafted about a full round above Schaub. That shocks me -- does no one care about the loss of Terrell Owens? This is a guy who has scored 38 TDs over the last three years, never failing to reach the end zone at least 10 times in any of those three years. Can Roy Williams really replace that production? He scored only twice in 2008, and didn't even come close to catching half the balls that were thrown to him. Who will Romo be throwing 26 TDs to this year?
Schaub, on the other hand, returns to an intact offense with two WRs that scored eight TDs each last year. The Texans offense passed for the fourth most yards in the league last year, with Schaub and Sage Rosenfels combining for nearly 4,500 yards through the air, along with 21 TDs and 20 INTs. Half of those interceptions were thrown by Rosenfels in 206 fewer attempts. When on the field, Schaub should average 250+ yards, 1.5 TDs, and 1 INT per game. I see Romo throwing less TDs and less yards in the rush-centric Dallas offense.
If you're worried about Schaub succumbing to injury, remember that Romo isn't the healthiest guy in the world either. And as Tom Brady showed us last year, it really can be any QB going down at any time. I'll take Schaub a round after Romo is off the board, and I guarantee that, health permitting, I'll be much happier about my pick at the end of the season.
Lalley: Ah yes, when it comes to a starting fantasy QB you want much more than just a flashy name. You need consistency, which is something really neither Tony Romo nor Matt Schaub have quite found in their young careers. All things considered though, when push comes to shove I'm more than happy to hitch my wagon to the Tony Romo express. I just can't believe in Schaub until I see him play a full season. Romo is a year older, a year wiser, and a year removed from the drama, carrying a renewed focus to be the leader this team sorely needs.
I promise you that he will quietly (out of the spotlight) put together his first complete and best statistical season to date. The distractions of the camera's and the limelight are no longer a crutch for Romo. He's parted ways with Jessica Simpson and the Cowboys pushed aside the T.O. drama to give Tony a clean slate moving forward. This is finally his team and the Cowboys have full pledged faith that he will not let them down.
Does it help that there is no Terrell Owens? Of course not, he's gonna miss the guy on the field to an extent. I'm not of the school of thought that somehow Romo is gonna be leaps and bounds better now that arguably one of the better WRs of this generation is gone. However, if there is one thing that has hampered Romo throughout the years it's been the mental part of the game and keeping his focus. And this year there will be no need to focus all of his attention on getting T.O the ball. It'll be fun again.
Is Roy Williams going to be the savior for Romo? He won't need to be as long as Jason Witten is still around. The fact that the Cowboys will now be a run first offense can and will only benefit Romo and the weapons around him. The pressure is minimal and the joy of the game is back for Romo. I know don't have a grip of stats to back up any such notion, but Romo is going to get back to the basics of enjoying and playing carefree. Shrug your shoulders all you want, but he's gonna deliver the goods this season.