The real question regarding Tony Romo: How do you like your steak?

Jan 1, 2017; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) warms up before action against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 1, 2017; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) warms up before action against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /

The Denver Broncos will be in pursuit of quarterback Tony Romo when he is released from the Dallas Cowboys on Thursday. How does he like his steak prepared?

At some point on Thursday night, we may be wishing we could be a fly on the wall at an all-important meeting between the Denver Broncos and free-agent-to-be Tony Romo. The most urgent question?

How do you like your steak prepared?

When John Elway is serious about bringing a player (or coach, for that matter) into the fold, there’s a steak dinner involved. That steak dinner is usually accompanied at some point by an offer, which is rarely turned down.

We have no inside info of an impending steak dinner between Elway and Romo, mainly because they can’t talk until Romo officially becomes a free agent on Thursday. But the only one we know of that has sat down to a steak dinner with Elway and the rest of the Broncos’ brass and actually turned them down is defensive lineman Earl Mitchell, who recently opted to sign with the San Francisco 49ers instead of the Broncos.

Elway knows that with a quarterback the caliber of Romo, the stakes are much higher…

Corny jokes aside, this is going to be an important free agent period for the Broncos. As the team finalizes preparations, they are tasked with making a bold decision that could push the team to the top of the list of AFC contenders with the New England Patriots.

The reports have been out there since last year’s trade deadline. Romo wants the Broncos. Now that he’s about to become available, it’s clear that the Broncos want Romo.

It’s not everyone’s favorite decision, but in my opinion, it’s a necessary decision.

The Broncos played with house money after winning a Super Bowl with one of the worst offensive performances in the history of the game. In Peyton Manning’s swan song, the Denver defense carried the team to its third championship.

If we’re all brutally honest, the Broncos have not had strong quarterback play since the middle of the 2014 season when it was clear that Peyton Manning was regressing physically at a rapid rate. After Manning and backup Brock Osweiler held down the fort in 2015, the team turned to former seventh round pick Trevor Siemian for the majority of the 2016 season.

That was after they drafted (and traded a third round pick for) Paxton Lynch in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft. Lynch was considered to be one of the most talented quarterbacks in the draft, but also a player that would need time (possibly years) to develop.

Many Broncos fans grew frustrated with Trevor Siemian’s growing pains in 2016, and pleaded for the coaching staff to give Lynch a shot. The rookie ended up playing in three games, starting a pair. He wasn’t good in two of his three appearances, both games he started.

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The new offensive coaching staff, namely Mike McCoy and Bill Musgrave, figure to help Lynch’s development significantly. But are the Broncos willing to go through another year of growing pains at quarterback when the option of Romo is out there?

There’s no guarantee Romo is going to stay healthy. In fact, history will tell us, there’s no way he’s playing 16 games. There’s also the thought that if you add Romo, you’re sacrificing the chance to upgrade other areas of the roster in free agency.

That’s not something that sits well with all Broncos fans, and it’s completely understandable.

But my stance on bringing in Romo hasn’t really changed since we talked about it back at the NFL trade deadline. The Broncos needed to evaluate their roster, specifically the quarterback position, and decide if the players they have are capable of taking them to a Super Bowl.

The answer — at best — is ‘not yet’. The Broncos are confident in Siemian and Lynch for the future, but they’re not willing to let a chance to bring Romo into the fold pass them by.

That’s why the potential steak dinner between Elway, Vance Joseph, and Tony Romo is so important. John Elway has won titles as a player and now one as an executive. The Houston Texans haven’t won jack squat.

So they play indoors? Who cares?

Their division is ‘easier’? I didn’t realize we were dealing with players who were afraid of real competition…

The Denver Broncos are never going to be out of contention for a title as long as John Elway is calling the shots. Even the reigning champion New England Patriots could only muster 16 points against the Broncos this past season.

The missing piece for the Broncos isn’t limited to four new offensive linemen. It’s not a weakside defensive end or a nose tackle. In the NFL, a great quarterback can make up for a lot of deficiencies. The Broncos won’t leave other areas of weakness unattended, but the chance to get a difference-maker like Romo is one they can’t pass up on.

This time, I don’t think Elway’s going to lose.