Inside Tony Romo's Marriage

Tony Romo may have never taken the Dallas Cowboys to the Super Bowl during his 14-year run, but he scored big when he married his wife, Candice Crawford, in 2011. The couple manages to keep much of their lives out of the public eye, something new for the retired quarterback after his high-profile relationships with prominent women in the entertainment industry. However, when Romo and Crawford do share insights about their family life, it's about their faith in God, how Crawford has been a huge supporter in her husband's career on and off the field, and how they're raising their three sons — Hawkins, Rivers, and Jones.

Despite being married to one of the biggest names in sports, Crawford shared with Tiffany Clutts on "Inside the Huddle" that they're just as normal as any other family. "You get up, you take the kids to school, you get them breakfast, you get out the door, you know, live in workout gear all day. It's kind of a normal routine like most people would have." While we may not think it's so "normal," it's nice to see that this celeb couple is just like anyone else regarding work and family.

Of course, there is much more to know about Tony Romo's marriage. Married for over 10 years, the couple has a pretty successful partnership that's rare in the sports world. 

They met while she was an intern for the Cowboys

Before Candice Romo took her husband's last name, she was known as Candice Crawford and studied journalism at the University of Missouri. As a college student, she worked as a "sports anchor for the local NBC affiliate KOMU-TV and interned for the Dallas CBS affiliate KTVT, covering the Cowboys for 'The Blitz,'" per People

According to a 2010 interview with the radio show KTCK (via Deadspin), Candice admitted to being in an exclusive relationship with Romo. Still, she revealed that when she first met him as an intern, she was "underage." After two years, the pair broke up with their significant others, which was perfect timing for them to get to know one another. "And I got back to Dallas to do 'Special Edition.' The Cowboys broadcasting department, who I am really close with, were like, 'Hey [Romo], we hired your intern friend again.' We ended up going out and have been going to dinner ever since," she said.

Tony Romo had high-profile relationships in the past

Before Tony and Candice Romo were an item, the former quarterback had a dating history that made headlines. While playing for the Dallas Cowboys, Romo started a romance with "American Idol" alum Carrie Underwood. The couple began dating in 2007, but it was short-lived, and the two split that October. In 2009, Underwood shut down rumors that her song "Cowboy Casanova" was about Romo by confirming to Esquire, "I would never immortalize a guy that did my wrong. I would never give him that much credit."

After his split from Underwood, Romo moved on with songstress Jessica Simpson in late 2007. The couple was going strong even after Simpson was labeled a bad luck charm by Cowboy fans. Romo's teammate, Terrell Owens, even sided with fans, having reportedly said after the QB suffered a rough loss against the Philadelphia Eagles in December, "Right now, Jessica Simpson is not a fan favorite — in this locker room or in Texas Stadium." 

Romo and Simpson didn't last long. Romo reportedly broke up with Simpson the night before her birthday in July 2009.

The NFL star tricked his future wife on their first date

Tony Romo had a gut feeling that Candice Crawford was the one. During an interview with Graham Bensinger, the former Cowboys quarterback revealed that after going out on two dates with the journalist, he knew he wanted to marry her. "She's just rare in a lot of ways, very exceptional, and you just don't meet many like that," he said.

However, getting Crawford to go on a date was more challenging than he thought. Romo shared that he had initially told Crawford that a group of friends were going to the movies but ended up tricking her when he showed up at her home alone. Despite this, Crawford joined the quarterback on their first date, and the rest is history. 

With the journalist finding herself in the limelight after marrying the high-profile athlete, she learned to tune out whatever negative press came his way. "I'm really good at digging my head in the sand. I'm not big on social media. I try to disregard sports-related articles or television. Tony always jokes, 'Where's that sports broadcast girl that I married?' I tell him, 'When you're done playing, I might be able to watch ESPN again.' As a wife, you want everyone to talk positively about your spouse and love them as much as you do," she shared with DFW Child.

Tony Romo and Candice Crawford wed during the NFL lockout

Tony Romo said goodbye to dating women in the spotlight when he began seeing journalist Candice Crawford in 2009. OK! reported that the couple started dating just two months after the quarterback broke up with Jessica Simpson. Soon enough, Romo was getting down on one knee and proposing to the reporter in 2010. When asked by OK! magazine why the couple was in such a rush to marry, Romo shared, "There's just a lot of different reasons. The traditional side of it. And when you know, you know."

Romo and Crawford tied the knot in May 2011 and had an extravagant wedding in Dallas, Texas. The couple had a whopping 600 guests, which included Romo's teammates and Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. Jones needed permission to attend since their nuptials occurred during the NFL lockout, in which players and coaches could not communicate. 

With Crawford reporting on sports and Romo playing them, the athlete believed he had found his perfect match. He shared with People in 2012, "If you get a great wife who understands the demands of someone in athletics, I think it's important. I was lucky enough to find someone like that. She's a great mom and a great wife."

Her brother is Gossip Girl star Chace Crawford

Candice Crawford's last name may ring a bell because her brother is "Gossip Girl" star Chace Crawford. The Crawfords are big Dallas Cowboys fans, so welcoming Tony Romo into their family was pretty unreal. Opening up to Jimmy Fallon about having Romo as a brother-in-law, "The Boys" star shared, "I grew up a Dallas fan, big fan. It was very surreal to become friends with him. We were the family that took ridiculous Christmas pictures in front of the fireplace with Cowboys starter jackets and white turtlenecks, and that's a true story ... When he became part of our family, watching those football games became a lot more nerve-wracking."

Although Chace and Romo have developed a brotherly bond, the men share the same ex after dating Carrie Underwood. The singer and Chace were an item between 2007 and 2008, with People reporting that they began their relationship sometime in October 2007, the same time she ended things with Romo. The pair split in April 2008 when the "American Idol" alum revealed that they broke up via text message. "It was completely mutual," Underwood said, adding, "It just didn't work. We both knew it didn't work and [had] no hard feelings at all whatsoever." 

His wife made her parents hide before he came over

With the Crawford family being huge Dallas Cowboys fans, Candice Crawford wasn't ready to tell her parents that she would be going on a date with the Tony Romo. Her brother, Chace Crawford, recalled on "The Rich Eisen Show" that she made their parents hide in their home so that they wouldn't potentially embarrass her in front of the quarterback. "They said, 'We're already here. What do you want us to do?' And she said, 'Hide. Hide in the back.' She made my parents hide,'" he told the host. Candice's parents hid in their master bathroom while Romo took Candice on their first date. 

Chace admitted to Jimmy Kimmel that at the start of his sister's relationship with Romo, he, along with his parents, "had to play it cool," adding, "we played the act." Things changed once Romo became a part of the family, with the actor sharing, "We're like brothers." Romo got down on one knee in front of Candice's family at a Dallas restaurant on her 24th birthday in 2010. When they got engaged, Chace told E! News, "I'm very excited. I'm very happy that she's happy." 

They welcomed three sons

Tony Romo and Candice Crawford are parents to three boys. She announced that she was expecting the couple's first child in October 2011, just five months after the couple got married. She gave birth to their son, Hawkins, in April 2012. The couple welcomed a second son named Rivers in March 2014, and in August 2017, the Romos became a family of five when they welcomed a third son named Jones. Romo announced the news on Twitter, sharing a photo of his newborn and stating, "Ten fingers and ten toes. All healthy. Almost have my basketball team built."

During Crawford's maternity shoot for their third son, she shared with People that she's happy being a mom of three boys despite thinking she would welcome a girl. "The best part about being a boy mom is that they keep me active! Whether it's sword fighting or playing basketball, we are constantly on the go. My favorite time of the day is bedtime when we slow down and read stories, snuggle and talk."

Now that Romo doesn't travel as much after retiring from football, he gets to spend more time with his sons. Revealing to ET that his wife is stricter than he is regarding parenting, he shared, "Dad is fun time."

Candice Crawford was relieved when Tony Romo retired

Tony Romo decided to leave his football career behind when he retired in 2017. Having been plagued by multiple sports-related injuries, including a broken collarbone and, in 2016, a compression fracture in his L1 vertebra, Romo only played a total of five games in his last two seasons. But, despite not leading the Dallas Cowboys to a Super Bowl, he stuck with the team for his entire 14-season career. Fortunately, Romo didn't have to say goodbye to football forever, after pursuing a career as a broadcaster for CBS.

Having seen Romo suffer numerous injuries during his career, Candice Crawford has admitted to feeling a weight lift off her shoulders ever since he announced that he was stepping away from his quarterback duties. She shared with Cupid's Pulse, "Being in the NFL is kind of like being on a reality show every week. You're living and dying by these wins and losses, and then, of course, injuries come into play, and you're stressed every game." Although she said she would miss "being a part of the NFL family," it's safe to say she's happy with Romo sitting up in his analyst booth reporting on the games rather than playing in them.

They starred in Super Bowl commercials together

Tony Romo is still a fixture of the NFL. In 2019, the former quarterback starred in a new Sketchers commercial during the 2019 Super Bowl, where the New England Patriots beat the Los Angeles Rams. In the ad, Romo shows off several items that make life easy, including a gigantic golf hole and a ball launcher for his dog to play fetch, all while wearing comfortable Sketchers memory foam shoes.

Romo appeared in another Sketchers commercial during the 2021 Super Bowl between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Kansas City Chiefs. This time, the NFL analyst brought along his wife, Candice Crawford. In the ad, the Romos wear Sketchers Max cushioning footwear while they both do everything in life "to the max," including eating sky-high sandwiches and driving around in a monster truck. 

Of course, the couple had to return for yet another ad for the shoe brand in 2022. In the commercial, Romo becomes a giant and stomps through the city, while Crawford runs away from her enormous husband. 

They both have separate gigs outside their marriage

Tony Romo headed to the analyst booth when he officially became an NFL broadcaster in 2017. Romo replaced Phil Simms, who moved to "The NFL Today," as lead analyst for CBS Sports. Romo has done a fantastic job calling games and predicting plays, including predicting that the Kanas City Chiefs and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers would meet in Super Bowl LV in 2020. As a lead analyst, Romo also earns a pretty penny. The New York Post reported that the retired QB signed a 10-year, $180 million contract with CBS, which became the biggest contract in sportscasting history.

As Romo keeps busy analyzing games, his wife Candice Crawford is also working hard in her business. Though she's no longer working as a journalist, she and best friend Hollie Siglin founded their company Hawk + Sloane in 2016. According to the company's website, the women launched a line of six sprays to help parents get through tough times with their children. The sprays include a Sleepy Spray to help calm kids for bed and a Sassy Spray when children act out. Culture Map Austin reported that each spray is made with essential oils and natural ingredients. Crawford shared, "Many parents have told us they've used it to successfully help children stop biting, talking back, throwing fits — you name it."

She helped Tony Romo transition into his commentator role

Tony Romo's transition into an NFL commentator came relatively easy. Working side by side with veteran sportscaster Jim Nantz on CBS, the legendary commentator told Sportscasters Talent Agency of America that it's a breeze working with Romo since they've had a relationship long before he began his new gig. "When we got started, sitting side-by-side calling games, we didn't have to go through that awkward 'get to know me' process. We already knew each other, we had chemistry ... He's got so much energy and exicitement and insight that's expressed in a way no one has seen before."

Romo's wife Candice Crawford told For the Win that Romo studied hard for his debut in the analyst chair and had his very own rituals. "When he was playing, after every game — win or lose — we'd invite everyone over to the house that was at the game with us, and he would stand up in front of the TV and break down his game. I even got him a pointer because he was very serious." Crawford added that as a reporter herself, she gave him a few tips that included looking at the camera now and again, but shared that after his first day on the job, he was already a natural.  

They aren't pushing their kids to play football

It's easy to assume that the Romos would want their kids to pursue a football career. However, Tony Romo told Dr. Phil in 2019 that he's wary of putting his young sons in tackle football until they reach a certain age. "I don't think I'll ever discourage them from doing anything. Like to me, it goes back to what you said, 'If you really like this, go play it.' What I won't allow them, from my dad perspective, if everything's the same as it is 10 years from now, they won't play tackle football until eighth grade. That'll be the first time we'll let them [play tackle football]." Romo added that while he isn't concerned about concussions, he doesn't think young kids should be tackling; instead, they should be learning the fundamentals of the game.

Speaking on The Dallas Morning News in 2016, Tony and his wife Candice Crawford did share how their son Hawkins has found interests in things other than football, while son Rivers "is like a miniature Tony." Crawford shared a bit about their first-born, Hawkins: "Even when he was 2, he was doing puzzles and legos, and we're doing t-ball right now. We're not sure if he'll be super into sports or not, but our younger one Rivers, our 2-year-old, like out of the womb wanted a ball, wants to play football, wants to play basketball."

They celebrated 10 years of marriage in 2021

Being the spouse of a top athlete has its pros and cons. While living a life of luxury and financial security comes with being married to a sports star, there's also an ugly side where we've seen way too many athletes caught up in scandalous affairs. However, the Romos have got the whole marriage thing down to a science. In 2021, the couple celebrated 10 years of marriage, which is a milestone. 

Speaking with Homegirl Talk, Candice Crawford revealed that their faith is the glue that holds their marriage together. "With all of the ups and downs that we've gone through — and that everybody goes through — our faith is essential for those day-to-day challenges and trials. Keeping [God] center makes everything more significant and important in this journey of life, and it keeps us less self-centered," she shared. 

Romo has made headlines for his strong faith. In 2012, he donated $1 million to the faith-based charity "Miracle of the Millions." In 2011, Crawford told OK! magazine that it was important that she found a partner who shared her beliefs. "As soon as we talked about that and shared those types of feelings of our faith, I think that was when it was a definite deal maker," the former journalist said.