RIBS HEALING: No more painkilling injections for Tony Romo

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo watches the play develop after handing off the ball in the second half against the St. Louis Rams at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, Sunday, Oct. 23, 2011.  JERRY LARA/glara@express-news.net Photo: Express-News, JERRY LARA / SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo. JERRY LARA / SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS

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ARLINGTON, TexasDallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo hopes he took his last painkilling injection of the season Sunday.

Romo took a shot the last four games after fracturing a rib in the Sept. 18 comeback win over the San Francisco 49ers. He said after Sunday’s 34-7 win over the St. Louis Rams that he doesn’t expect to need a shot before next week’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

“It felt more comfortable, if that makes sense,” said Romo, who threw for 166 yards and two touchdowns on 14-of-24 passing against the Rams. “You know you can take a hit when your ribs are broken and deal with it, but I think by next week they’ll be good to go without the shot.”

Romo, who also suffered a small puncture in his lung that healed the week after he rallied the Cowboys to the win in San Francisco, has been wearing a Kevlar vest to protect the ribs. He said he has not determined whether he will continue to wear the vest.

The best thing the Cowboys can do to protect Romo is to keep their running game going. The Cowboys entered Sunday’s game ranked 29th in the NFL in rushing offense (84.8 yards per game), but they exploded for 294 yards on the ground against the Rams. Rookie DeMarco Murray, a third-round pick, gained 253 yards on 25 carries to break Emmitt Smith’s franchise record for rushing yardage in a game.

“There was less pressure on the quarterback today than there was in other games,” Romo said, “and that’s in direct relation to the running game.”

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