Dallas Cowboys backup Quarterback Cooper Rush recorded 325 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 interception in a win against the Minnesota Vikings in 2021, then 235 yards and 1 touchdown in another win against the Cincinnati Bengals yesterday. Despite average stats and few starts, Rush has shown he can perform well when called upon with these limited opportunities.
With last week’s lackluster performance and loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dallas started their season poorly. At home against the favored Bengals, with an injury from that game sidelining starting Quarterback Dak Prescott, yesterday Rush entered the Cowboys starting lineup as the next man up. What he did in the 1st and 2nd half ultimately helped the Cowboys pull off a shocking win.
DAL vs CIN: 1st Half
Cooper Rush came out and showed great poise in the pocket. He looked comfortable and ready to execute a well-equipped game plan by Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore. Throughout the 1st and 2nd quarter, Rush slung the ball through the air, constantly completing multiple short and long throws resulting in great yards gained by the Cowboys offense.
A couple of those passes were caught by his practice buddy, Cowboys Wide Receiver Noah Brown. Emerging as Rush’s main go-to receiver for the day, he had a stand-out performance of 5 receptions, 91 yards, and a touchdown.
Rush set up the Cowboys for their two and only touchdowns in the game this half.
On one, Rush threw a great strike for six. On the other, he dropped a short pass off to Cowboys' exciting young Running back Tony Pollard, which Pollard made a big gain. The following play Rush handed the ball off to Pollard who would take it into the end zone for another touchdown.
Complemented with great defensive play by star player Micah Parsons and others, the Cowboys made the Bengals succumb to their will. They were able to hold the high-powered Bengals offense to just 3 points.
Entering half time, the Cowboys went to their locker room up by 2 touchdowns.
Cowboys vs Bengals: 2nd Half
Rush seemed shaky to start this half. Some throws got away from him. The Bengals began to get pressure. As a whole, the Bengals woke up this half. Led by young promising Quarterback Joe Burrow, Cincinnati evened out the score to 17-17 near the end of the 4th quarter.
Rush was unable to help the Cowboys score any more touchdowns. However, there were flashes of what he did the previous half. With a nice run attack behind him most of the game to add, Rush used this to lead a game-winning drive.
With a couple key runs and big-time pass completions, Rush helped set up the Cowboys for a field goal try. Unsung Kicker Brett Maher kicked a long-range game-winner, one of two field goals made by him, sealing a major Cowboys victory early in the season.
After the game, teammates and Head Coach Mike McCarthy raved about the impact Rush brings to their offense in Prescott’s absence.
- Star Running Back Ezekiel Elliott described Rush as relaxed, smart, and embraceful of the spotlight.
- Stud Wide-Out CeeDee Lamb said that the team believes in Rush when he’s needed the most.
- McCarthy mentioned that Rush stays consistent with team contributions and creates excitement for others in the way he celebrates winning.
With Prescott having to miss a few more weeks, Rush looks to be the man behind center for the Cowboys in these upcoming weeks. Any change leading to Rush being sidelined until Prescott comes back looks shut down for now due to the comments of Cowboys Owner and General Manager Jerry Jones.
“I certainly would look to hope that he just might be available, but I'm telling you, this performance out here today by Rush sure takes a lot of the angst out of that,” said Jones.