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Tony Romo for MVP? Cowboys start making their case

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The Cowboys are NFC East champions and Tony Romo is piling up numbers that can be favorably compared with any quarterback in football. After Sunday's 42-7 win over the Colts, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones began the push to put Romo on the NFL MVP radar.

"He certainly is in my book," Jones said Sunday, according to ESPNDallas.com. "He is for me."

Until now, the popular MVP candidate out of Big D was DeMarco Murray, the league's leading rusher and the Cowboys' indisputable workhorse this season. But Jones believes Romo is the one player on offense Dallas could not survive without.

"Yes, he is, because Murray has certainly carried his share, but Tony's quarterbacking this year was indispensable," Jones said. "We couldn't have had the team, and we have a team that probably right now is in the top four or five teams in the league. That's pretty good qualification of the vote."

Romo has rebounded from back surgery to enjoy what has been perhaps the best statistical season of his 12-year career. In 14 games, Romo leads the NFL in passer rating (114.4), completion percentage (70.3) and yards per attempt (8.49). Romo has thrown for 3,406 yards with 32 touchdowns and just eight interceptions. The Cowboys have won 11 of his 14 starts.

"Hell yeah, he is. He's the MVP," said Dez Bryant, who has caught nearly half of Romo's touchdown passes this season. "Look at the performance. He's giving 'em hell in December. Icing on the cake. Give it to him. He's doing a hell of a job."

The argument against Romo for MVP: The offense has undeniably flowed through Murray and the run game, and Murray's success has allowed Romo to drop back in far more beneficial situations. The numbers tell us Romo has asked to do less: He's attempted just 401 passes this year after averaging 568 over his previous three seasons.

Then again, should it be held against Romo that he's no longer being asked to do it all? Every other MVP candidate (save for outlier J.J. Watt) has benefitted from a strong core around him. Romo has a top-tier offensive line, stud running back and superstar wide receiver. Aaron Rodgers isn't exactly hurting in the supporting cast category himself.

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