Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett told the media on Sept. 1 that his quarterback, Tony Romo, has "got that look on his face" and is confident heading into the Cowboys' Week 1 showdown against the San Francisco 49ers on Sept. 7.
Tony Romo's confidence is back.
"Aside from thoroughly complimenting (San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin) Kaepernick, Garrett indicated that Romo looks ready to play in his first meaningful game since undergoing back surgery Dec. 27 for a herniated disk.
"'He's really looked like himself to me,' Garrett told Dallas-area reporters at Monday's press conference. 'He's got that look on his face. He's got confidence about his body being where it needs to be. He, like everybody else, is getting ready for this challenge this weekend.'
"Romo, 34, is entering his 11th season. He practiced Monday, and his surgically-repaired back apparently held up from the three sacks he endured in the Cowboys' third exhibition game last month.
"'The last couple weeks we've seen Tony really be himself,' Garrett said. 'He's moved around in practice very spontaneously. He's made a lot of throws. He's taken hits in games. He's come back from all that stuff.
"'He's worked very hard to get himself to the point where he's 100 percent with his back. It's going to be a work in progress for him, as it would be with anyone coming off an injury.'
"Garrett is entering his fourth full season as Cowboys coach, having gone 8-8 each of the last three seasons. He replaced Wade Phillips midway through 2010.
"Garrett, primarily a backup quarterback with the Cowboys from 1993-99, is impressed by what he's seen in Colin Kaepernick, who's never played against the Cowboys."
Garrett also sees Romo, who had offseason back surgery, going through a full week of practice in preparation for the game against the 49ers on Sept. 7, per The Dallas Morning News' David Moore:
"Tony Romo hasn't practiced more than two consecutive days since training camp began.
"That's about to change.
"Romo practiced Monday. The players are off Tuesday. But head coach Jason Garrett said he anticipates the quarterbacks will practice Wednesday, Thursday and Friday as the Cowboys prepare for their regular-season opener with San Francisco.
"'We anticipate a full week of practice,' Garrett said. 'But again, we'll monitor how he does with the work we give him.'
"Garrett reiterated that he believes Romo has looked more like himself over the last two weeks as he puts more distance between himself and offseason back surgery.
"'The thing I kept reminding Tony about as we went through this process starting all the way back in the spring is the goal is to be ready for the 49ers on September 7,' Garrett said. 'We are going to find a way, somehow some way. We are going to get you to that point where you are ready to go and hopefully beyond that. Play this game and that's the start of a heck of a year for you.
"'We have all collectively tried to get him to that point. Sometimes it's working hard through things. Sometimes it's backing them off at practice.
"'We are excited he will have an opportunity to play this week.'"
Romo has thrown for 29,565 yards, 208 touchdowns and 101 interceptions on a 95.8 passer rating in 130 career regular-season games through Sept. 1, per ESPN stats.