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Jerry Jones: Johnny Manziel could have been Tony Romo’s successor

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Jerry Jones again has expressed some semblance of regret over not taking Johnny Manziel when the Dallas Cowboys had the chance to draft the quarterback with the 16th-overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.

With Romo out for the season and the fact that he’ll be 36 entering the 2016 season, Jones discussed the team’s future at quarterback during an appearance Tuesday on 105.3 The Fan. The Cowboys owner of course has previously made his feelings about Manziel well-known on more than one occasion and again mentioned that the current third-string quarterback with the Cleveland Browns could have served as Romo’s heir apparent had the Cowboys selected him.

“Do you remember two years ago when we sat there right to the last second on the clock with Manziel? My whole point is, there you are,” Jones said, as transcribed by The Dallas Morning News. “That was the whole purpose of doing that. At that particular time, for a first-round pick, I thought that Romo had more time. And if we sat there and worked with Manziel for four or five years, now we all know what’s happened. We know the off-the-field issues. But on our board, one of our top five or six picks dropped down to us and it was at the quarterback position, and I absolutely was a vote of one in that room to basically go there. And I understood why.

“I understood the risk that was involved. And we got a great player instead. But those are the circumstances that come up when you’re thinking for the future. I was at that particular time, debating the value of him for the future as well as debating a backup.”

The Cowboys instead opted to play it safer with their first-round pick, and it paid off handsomely in offensive guard Zack Martin, who was named an All-Pro in his rookie season.

But with Manziel’s future with the Browns in limbo at best, it’s possible instead of drafting the ultimate successor of Romo — Jones affirmed the organization’s stance by insisting his current quarterback has a good “four to five years” left in the tank — perhaps Jones can swing a deal to get the quarterback he so coveted nearly two years ago.