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Dak Prescott Should Be In The MVP Conversation

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Dak Prescott Should Be In The MVP Conversation

Just when the Cowboys were being taken out of the "contending teams" conversation by many fans around the country, they are becoming one of the best teams in the NFL. They're 3-0 since their bye week and are coming off of a quality win against the Kansas City Chiefs.

This team is real, people. Although doubts inevitable came after a painful 2-3 start, this is a different team. These are not the guys who were destroyed on the road by the Denver Broncos. This is not the team that got stunned by the Rams at home.

A lot of things have changed since then. The linebackers are healthy and ready to go, the secondary is getting better every week, and the offensive line looks like another unit after Jonathan Cooper was named the starting left guard over Chaz Green.

The 2017 Dallas Cowboys are a Super Bowl contending team. I have no doubt about that at all. But there's one small problem. Ezekiel Elliott might be serving a six-game suspension anytime now, and the Eagles are still rolling, ready to take over the NFC East.

The Cowboys will probably have to earn a Wildcard spot to make it to the playoffs, leaving Dallas with little chance to lose. Every game is a must-win game.

Fortunately, the Cowboys have the right guy at the most important position in football. They have a player that can put the team on his shoulders and keep winning even if Elliott ends up sitting for six games.

Cowboys en Español: ¿Pueden Los Cowboys Alcanzar a Philadelphia?

Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth, File)

That guy's name is Dak Prescott.

The sophomore who was supposed to regress during his second year in the league, is doing the opposite. Dak Prescott has improved a lot since last season and is becoming a better quarterback every week.

He's making throws he didn't make last year, his awareness is improving, he is taking control over this offense in a way we hadn't seen before. He's picked up this team in moments where they've needed it the most.

He's accounted for 20 total touchdowns this season, which ranks him only behind Carson Wentz and Deshaun Watson in the NFL. Wentz has played one more game but is currently on his bye week.

Carson Wentz is the front-runner on the MVP race and rightfully so. Even as a Cowboys fan, it's difficult not to recognize what the Eagles are doing as they're ready to visit Dallas in week 11 with an 8-1 record.

Even still, don't count Dak Prescott out. He's got a unique chance to put himself in the MVP conversation and perhaps end the season as the front-runner for the award. The Cowboys have two games versus the Eagles and if they end up shocking the world by defeating Philly twice, look out.

Ever since they became starters for this team, Ezekiel Elliott and Dak Prescott have been part of an interesting debate. Some will say Zeke is the reason why Dak has been so successful. While this is in part true, it's impossible to take credit away from Prescott and what he's done.

We still don't know if Zeke will be suspended or not this season, but if he is, Prescott has the perfect opportunity to prove what he's all about. Without a premium rushing attack, the offense will rely heavily on the passing game.

Dak has been able to get the ball to all of his receivers and will continue to do so going forward.

He's on pace for 32 passing TDs, and that's including a rainy game in Washington in which he didn't throw a single touchdown pass. At least two of his four interceptions weren't really his fault.

Dak Prescott, Cole Beasley

QB Dak Prescott and WR Cole Beasley (Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports)

With this receiving corp, and this offensive line, Dak Prescott has everything he needs to put himself in the MVP conversation and even become the front runner in a few weeks. Picture it, the Cowboys finish the season with a record of 11 wins, they beat the Eagles at least once and Dak Prescott surpasses the 40 touchdown mark. No Cowboys QB has ever done that, and Prescott is in fact on pace for 40 total TDs.

I strongly believe Dak Prescott could take everyone by surprise and win the MVP Award this season. He's got work to do though. Meanwhile, he should be in the conversation.

Your turn, 4.

Tell me what you think about "Dak Prescott Should Be In The MVP Conversation" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



I love to write, I love football and I love the Dallas Cowboys. I've been rooting for America's team all the way from Mexico ever since I can remember. If you want to talk football, I'm in... You'll find me at @PepoR99.

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2 Comments
  • dallas1966

    Excellent article. Now that’s it’s official that Zeke will be put on the shelf for six weeks. I TOO believe that the Dak Attack will raise to the occasion. I wouldn’t bet against Dak.

    • Mauricio Rodriguez

      Me neither, I agree with you. Thank you for reading!

Star Blog

Cowboys en Español: Evaluando la Administración

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Can we Believe General Manager Jerry Jones?

Entre los aficionados de los Dallas Cowboys, pocas cosas son criticadas tan frecuentemente como la administración de la franquicia que no ha ganado ningún Super Bowl en más de dos décadas. Se ha convertido en un equipo que, a pesar de ser el más valioso en el mundo deportivo, no ha sido nada relevante en el emparrillado. Lo que alguna vez fue una dinastía se ha convertido en una unidad que rompe frecuentemente los corazones de los fans.

Jerry Jones y Stephen Jones, siendo los operadores del ámbito deportivo del negocio familiar, son criticados semana tras semana y en gran parte por justa razón. Pero en gran parte, por cosas no muy válidas.

Cambios de Coach

A mi parecer, lo más criticable para la administración de este equipo viene cuando hablamos de los coaches. Muchos se burlan de los Cincinnati Bengals y de la manera en la que están atascados con el Head Coach Marvin Lewis. Con Jason Garrett al volante, la situación para los Cowboys no es nada diferente.

A mediados de la temporada 2018, no parece que esta narrativa vaya a cambiar. Una vez más, los Cowboys arrancaron de una manera muy inconsistente y ya no sabemos que esperar de ellos. Gran parte de las derrotas, la mayor parte, es el coacheo.

Sin duda el equipo no será exactamente el mismo en 2019, pero ¿serán suficientes los cambios como para decidir quedarse con el mismo capitán que no ha podido mantener el barco navegando por años?

El Draft

A diferencia de como se manejan muchos equipos en la liga, los Jones fungen como general managers de su propio equipo. Con la ayuda de Will McClay han logrado superar varios de los fracasos de los Jones de antaño, pero actualmente, siendo sinceros no han hecho un mal trabajo.

A pesar de las critícas de Abril, Leighton Vander Esch está probando haber valido más que la pena. Siendo objetivos, aparte de Taco Charlton en el 2017, todas las selecciones de primera ronda de los Cowboys han sido valiosas. La línea ofensiva, el corredor, un cornerback que por fin se está perfilando como uno de los mejores en la liga.

En cuanto a la segunda ronda, ha habido varias críticas, muchas con razón. Pero el mejor caza cabezas del equipo, DeMarcus Lawrence, el linebacker Jaylon Smith, Randy Gregory y más están teniendo un impacto muy fuerte en el equipo.

Decisiones difíciles

La administración se ha visto en la necesidad de tomar decisiones bastante difíciles después de una temporada de nueve victorias en 2017. El LB Anthony Hitchens fue liberado, Dan Bailey se fue inesperadamente, se confió en Byron Jones para tomar su opción de quinto año.

Hasta ahora, pura decisión digna de aplaudirse. Pero ninguna como la más reciente de todas: Amari Cooper.

Por más caro que haya salido, los Cowboys merecen bastante crédito por haber mejorado muchísimo su posición de WR. Si el equipo llega a tener una oportunidad esta temporada, será en gran parte por él.

No cabe ninguna duda en mi cabeza de que los Jones han cometido errores a lo largo de los años, el más evidente siendo la resistencia de dejar ir a Jason Garrett. Pero a pesar de esto, la administración ha tomado excelentes decisiones y ha realizado el draft muy bien. En ese aspecto en específico, les aplaudo.

Tell me what you think about "Cowboys en Español: Evaluando la Administración" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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Star Blog

Sack Numbers Don’t Tell DeMarcus Lawrence’s 2018 Story

Kevin Brady

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Breaking Down DeMarcus Lawrence's League High 5.5 Sacks Through Week 4

Coming off of a career year in 2017, many fans expected DeMarcus Lawrence to continue his ridiculous sack production this season. After all, he is once again in a "contract year" due to the franchise tag, and fans are hoping the Cowboys can secure him longterm this offseason.

Through the first four games of 2018, Lawrence looked as ridiculous and unstoppable as ever. He had 5.5 sacks, tied for the league lead, and was dictating the pass protection schemes of every offense the Cowboys were facing.

Since that hot start, though, DeMarcus Lawrence has recorded just 1 sack, falling behind some of the league leaders he was once ahead of. This has some people scratching their heads and wondering if Lawrence's career year in 2017 was just that, a career year. One which he will never replicate again, and one which the Cowboys should factor out when talking contract extensions.

Here's why those people are wrong.

Let's first talk about what makes DeMarcus Lawrence so good, and then we'll get into the full context of the Cowboys defense and how that explains some of the drop in sacks.

Lawrence, unlike some of the league's other top pass rushers, is a complete 4-3 defensive end. He is one of, if not the best run defending defensive ends in football, as shown by his 12 tackles for loss on the season (only Aaron Donald and Danielle Hunter have more).

Much of the year, the Cowboys run defense has boiled down to Lawrence making splash plays, as we saw against the Washington Redskins. Adrian Peterson was gashing the Cowboys during that game, and the only one who did anything to stop him was DeMarcus Lawrence, as indicated by his 3 tackles for loss that Sunday.

There's also the point that 6.5 sacks through half the season is, well, good. It's really good! And when you couple his sack numbers with his solid pressure and QB hit stats, you can see that Lawrence is having a very good season.

Then there is the context of this entire Cowboys defense, specifically their defensive line and pass rush. To put it bluntly, DeMarcus Lawrence has been their only consistent rusher this season. Though we came into the year with high hopes for Randy Gregory, and cautious optimism about first round pick Taco Charlton, neither have been all that impressive this season.

Somebody, anybody, has to step up and become a threat opposite of Lawrence. David Irving could help matters with his interior pass rush ability, but he has been unavailable for basically the entire season.

Without another pass rusher for offense's to even think twice about, Lawrence is getting double teamed and/or chipped by a tight end or running back on just about every rush. It's becoming rare that Lawrence is in a true one-on-one pass rush situation.

Of course, if you are elite, offenses are going to shift protections to you in this way and you still have to find ways to be productive.

And thus far in 2018, DeMarcus Lawrence is doing just that.



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Star Blog

Can QB Dak Prescott Steal Back His Mojo From Atlanta?

Brian Martin

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Can Dak Prescott Regain His Mojo Against Atlanta?
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

When the Dallas Cowboys last traveled to Mercedes-Benz Stadium they were completely throttled by the Atlanta Falcons. It's a game a lot of Cowboys Nation would like to forget, but no one more so than Quarterback Dak Prescott. That game could very well be where his struggles really began.

It's almost exactly a year later and the Dallas Cowboys still find themselves haunted by that brutal beating the Atlanta Falcons handed them in Week 10 of the 2017 season. The Cowboys seemed to lose all confidence in themselves after that game, but it was almost as if it was the exact point in time where Dak Prescott lost all of his mojo as well.

Before that match up against the Falcons, Prescott was still playing at a pretty high level. But since then, he has been in a slump and there have been very few signs of recapturing any of that magic he once had. Heading back to Atlanta maybe the key for him finding and stealing back his mojo.

Things could definitely go a little differently this time around. The Cowboys will have Ezekiel Elliott and Tyron Smith in the lineup this week. Zeke missed the game last year due to the league mandated six-game suspension, and Tyron missed due to an injury. Having those two back in the lineup could pay huge dividends, especially for Prescott.

Without his starting left tackle and running back, Dak was pretty much beaten to a pulp by the Falcons defense a year ago. They applied relentless pressure, hitting and sacking him on a number of occasions. Unfortunately, I think that's where he started seeing ghost in the pocket and its haunted him ever since.

Dak Prescott

Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)

The beating he took at the hands of the Falcons has really thrown off his entire game. His mechanics, accuracy, and effectiveness as a scrambler can all be traced back to that one matchup. He just hasn't been the same QB he was prior to that game.

Prescott's stats prior to the Falcons game:

24 starts
66.7 completion percentage
102.4 passer rating

Prescott's stats since the Falcons game:

17 starts
63.3 completion percentage
83.1 passer rating

As you can see, that's a notable difference. His passer rating has shockingly dropped nearly 20 points since last playing the Falcons and it's really hurt the entire offensive production. It's time for that to change.

Prescott has no choice this week. He has to get back up on the horse that bucked him off and hopefully regain that mojo he left in Atlanta a year ago. Fortunately for him, his confidence might be is as high as it's been since that last meeting after pulling off the upset against the Philadelphia Eagles last week.

Now, he just has to go out and prove it!

Do you think Dak Prescott can regain his mojo against the Atlanta Falcons?



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