<
>

Cris Collinsworth has some advice for Tony Romo

OXNARD, Calif. -- Cris Collinsworth has some advice for Tony Romo as the former Dallas Cowboys quarterback begins his broadcasting career.

“Keep your head low, baby,” Collinsworth said from the Pro Football Hall of Fame last week.

Collinsworth, who played wide receiver for the Bengals from 1981-88, is NBC’s lead football analyst. Romo is set to begin his first season of television as CBS’ lead analyst.

Romo worked the Cowboys’ win over the Arizona Cardinals in the Hall of Fame Game in a makeshift booth in the end zone with Jim Nantz as a dry run for when he makes his debut Aug. 25. He and Nantz will have at least one more run-through before calling that game.

“He has a very difficult task ahead of him,” Collinsworth said. “You’re learning to do television in general. It’s not like being on a show. There’s a million-mile-an-hour communication [in a game broadcast] when to hit the button, when to be talking on air, when not to be talking. So a lot of it is going to be the mechanics. But Tony is one of those charming guys who’s really smart, who really understands the game. If he can take himself out of the mechanics a little bit as he’s learning it and let Jim Nantz sort of lead the way and be a conversationalist on the air, he is a very interesting guy who really knows the game of football inside out and is going to be great.

“It’s a difficult step. It’s a much easier step to go into the studio than it is to broadcast the game. And he’s going to be doing Sunday and Thursday so the prep time isn’t a week anymore. Sometimes it’s three days or whatever. But I really think CBS took the long-term look at Tony Romo. Everybody wanted Tony. Let’s face it, everybody did. Every network did, and there’s a reason: He has that kind of talent.”