Orton: I'm not just a backup
Kyle Orton: I'm not just a backup with Dallas Cowboys
Kyle Orton raised eyebrows this spring when he chose to sign with the Dallas Cowboys as a backup rather than compete for a starting role elsewhere. Orton didn't visit any other teams, instead taking the Cowboys' generous three-year, $10.5 million deal to get behind Tony Romo on the depth chart. Does the 29-year-old Orton still believe he could compete as a starter in the league? "I hope so," Orton said, according to the Cowboys' official site. "I feel like I've played good ball in this league, I feel I've got a lot of good ball left in me. I don't see this as committing myself to be the backup. I'm just committing myself to be a part of the team."
Orton's wording there is interesting. Romo is completely entrenched at QB for Dallas and is coming off the best statistical season of his eight-year career. Orton's competitive drive appears intact, even if the decision could lead you to think otherwise. "He's certainly someone who is capable of playing and being a starter in this league, but this is a good place for a quarterback to play," head coach Jason Garrett said. "Our quarterbacks have played well here -- he certainly understands that. He's a team guy." Garrett called Orton's signing "a really good acquisition for us" and we certainly can't disagree with that. We just ranked Orton as the No. 1 backup quarterback in the NFL, after all. But it remains curious why Orton chose Dallas. He might not be committed to a backup role, but the Cowboys are clearly committed to Romo. Barring an injury, Orton seems to have traded the spotlight for security.