Dak Prescott has dealt with a lot during this offseason. Back in April, his brother Jace committed suicide. This week, details from an interview Prescott did earlier this year for “In Depth With Graham Bensinger”, which will air this weekend, revealed that he battled depression during quarantine while also mourning the loss of his brother who committed suicide in April:
“All throughout this quarantine and this off-season, I started experiencing emotions I’ve never felt before,” Prescott said in the interview per the team’s website. “Anxiety for the main one. And then, honestly, a couple of days before my brother passed, I would say I started experiencing depression. And to the point of, I didn’t want to work out anymore. I didn’t know necessarily what I was going through, to say the least, and hadn’t been sleeping at all.”
On Thursday, Prescott talked to the media about the importance of not being silent about mental health issues and how it can potentially save people’s lives:
“I got the help I needed, and I was very open about it. … Emotions can overcome you if you don’t do something about it,” Prescott said. “Mental health is a huge issue and it’s a real thing in our world right now, especially the world we live in where everything is as viral and everyone is part of the media, I guess you can say, and can get on social media and be overcome with emotions or be overcome with the thoughts of other people and allow that to fill into their heads when those things aren’t necessarily true, whether it’s getting likes on Instagram or something being viewed or being bullied or whatever it may be. All of those things can put thoughts into your head about yourself or about your situation in life that aren’t true. I think that it’s huge. I think it’s huge to talk, I think it’s huge to get help and it saves lives.”
Also on Thursday, unfortunately, Skip Bayless of “Undisputed” criticized Prescott and said he had no sympathy for him dealing with depression, questioning his ability as a leader. Prescott was asked about those comments and said he’d be a “fake leader” if he didn’t talk about his mental health:
“I think being a leader is about being genuine and being real. If I wouldn’t have talked about those things to the people I did I wouldn’t realize that I, my friends, and a lot more people go through them, and they are as common as they are. I don’t think for one second leaders are not, and no matter how big of a person you are, if you’re not mentally healthy. … If you’re not thinking the right way then you’re not going to be able to lead people the right way. So, before I can lead, I got to make sure my mind’s in the right place to do that and lead people to where they want to me. I think it’s important to be vulnerable, to be genuine, to be transparent. I think that goes a long way when you’re a leader and when your voice is being heard by so many, and you can inspire.”
Powerful words from the Cowboys signal-caller. Too many times people don’t reveal that they’re dealing with depression and it can sometimes lead to them losing their battle with their demons. Salute to Prescott’s honesty on such a sensitive issue.