The Dallas Cowboys are heading to the playoffs for the third time in the last five seasons. Quarterback Dak Prescott his heading to the playoffs for the second time in his three-year career. In clinching the NFC East in their win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dak stayed true to this team's formula for winning. It wasn't pretty m, but it was an effective game by Prescott and the offense.
On the day, Dak completed 20 passes on 25 attempts for 161 yards, one touchdown, and a passer rating of 106.8. He also added a total of two yards on four carries while running for a score as well.
Dak Prescott only attempted one pass greater than 20 yards down field, which he completed to Wide Receiver Michael Gallup down the right sideline against the Tampa Bay cover-2 defense. That throw was about as good as it gets when trying to fit the ball in with the corner and the safety both in coverage.
In the red zone, the Cowboys looked better, though they didn't get there much on Sunday. Dak has a nice run for a touchdown on a read-option that the Cowboys blocked really well. The other touchdown came on a nice fade to the back right corner of the end zone to Gallup again.
Against pressure, according to Pro Football Focus, Prescott was six of nine for only 26 yards. That's less that three yards per attempt against pressure, which isn't good. PFF attributed two of the three incompletions as drops. They have Tight End Blake Jarwin accredited with a drop, but if you go back and watch the one incompletion thrown his way, it's obvious that the play was really behind him. Did it hit him in the hands? Yes, but it was a late throw that Dak can't miss in the future.
Did Dak Prescott and the offense have a spectacular game against the Buccaneers? Nope. However, the Cowboys continue to find ways to win as they've won six of their last seven and are now 7-1 at home. And during the last seven games, that's been the formula for this team to win.
They've been built to play in January and February as a team that can run the ball and can suffocate you on defense. From their quarterback, like Sunday against Tampa Bay, all they needed was a quarterback who wasn't going to make a costly mistake and score points when points are available.
Again, not a spectacular day, but one you can win with as the Cowboys defense played really well for most of the game, but it was a game from Dak Prescott that will win a lot of games.
With the playoffs starting in a couple of weeks, the Cowboys are going to need similar and more consistent play from their quarterback. If they want to make some noise in this year's tournament, Dak will need to get his game right, especially to beat that stingy Seattle Seahawks defense. Come playoff time, Prescott will need to Ben more than adequate, and I for one bit elusive, Dak will rise to the occasion.
From all of us here's at Inside The Star, Merry Christmas to you and yours. Let's hope this holiday season kicks off a deep run for that elusive sixth Lombardi trophy!