OXNARD, Calif. -- The Dallas Cowboys are taking it easy with Tony Romo's back.
Romo was expected to sit out a competitive practice for the first time at training camp Tuesday, although coach Jason Garrett said it wasn't because of any setbacks from surgery for a herniated disk in late December.
Garrett says the Cowboys are making daily decisions on workload, and Romo is in on them as well.
Executive vice-president Stephen Jones said it was the 34-year-old quarterback's idea to skip Friday's full practice, which was lighter work without pads.
Romo did all the competitive work in the first two practices with pads Saturday and Sunday. The team was off Monday, and Romo was part of the morning walkthrough session earlier Tuesday.
"There's an old adage in football, a day off can be really valuable, two days off can be life changing," Garrett said. "So when you get in this kind of a situation, we had yesterday off, got some good work this morning in the walkthrough, some mental work of some of the different situations we're working on."
Romo injured his back against Washington last season but stayed in and threw a game-winning touchdown pass. He had surgery two days before the Cowboys lost to Philadelphia with Kyle Orton at quarterback in a season-ending loss that kept Dallas out of the playoffs.
After being held out of competitive situations throughout the off-season, Romo was declared ready for camp. But the Cowboys have been cautious by limiting his throws. Tuesday's break is the most significant cutback so far.
"The biggest thing we talked to Tony about and really all of our players about, is honest feedback," Garrett said. "We recognize that you're a tough player. I saw what you did against the Redskins last year. You just got to tell us how you're doing, how it's going and make sure we handle it the right way each and every day."
Garrett said the feedback from Romo has been "good."
"But we just have to monitor him," the coach said. "We've just got to make sure we don't overdo the reps ... just be mindful of where he is each and every day."
The surgery in December was the second procedure on Romo's back in eight months. He had a cyst removed before the start of off-season practices last year and didn't do any significant work until training camp.
This year, Romo tried to sneak into a competitive drill during minicamp in June, and Garrett kicked him out of the huddle.
"It's the same approach we take here," Garrett said. "Let's keep taking incremental steps. Part of getting ready for that is practicing in training camp, part of getting ready for that is playing in preseason games. We feel like we're very much on schedule in those two regards."