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Is Evaluating Dak Prescott Really This Hard?

RJ Ochoa

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Dak Prescott

No one, and I mean no one, saw Dak Prescott coming. He took over the NFL in a way that completely stunned all those around him, to the point that it forced Tony Romo – the Cowboys all-time leader in passing – to retire. It’s understandable after all, there are always misses when it comes to the NFL Draft. Some people can accept this, but others feel the need to get way too hipster about it all with continual batches of takes.

Andy Benoit on Twitter

Dak Prescott as rookie had great OL, run game and a true No 1 WR. Still has it, but at some point won’t. Then we’ll really learn about him.

Let me be clear here and say that Andy Benoit does great work… but I don’t understand the point that he decided to try and circle around on Monday. There are so many thoughts that I have about this one, simple tweet that I had to take some time to write them down (you’re reading them!).

How Did We Not Learn Anything About Dak Prescott?

The insinuation that Andy is making here is that because the Dallas Cowboys have pieces around Dak Prescott in the form of an offensive line, run game, and Dez Bryant that we simply do not know anything about him. What?

Dez Bryant is an amazing wide receiver (I fell on a Janoris Jenkins-shaped sword for him on Monday because of how great he is), but he doesn’t at all make Dak Prescott who he is. Does our perpetrator here not remember that Dez Bryant missed three games? The Cowboys traveled to San Francisco, hosted Cincinnati, and went to Lambeau Field all without #88 suiting up. Dak seemed to not completely fall apart…

  • San Francisco: 23/32, 245 yards, 2 touchdowns, 0 interceptions, win.
  • Cincinnati: 18/24, 227 yards, 1 touchdown, 0 interceptions, win.
  • Green Bay: 18/27, 247 yards, 3 touchdowns, 1 interception, win.

To belittle Dez Bryant’s importance to the Dallas Cowboys would be silly, but let’s really pump the brakes on just declaring that Dak had a “true No 1 WR”. The only metric in which Dez Bryant actually finished first in on the team was touchdowns (8). He was second in yards (Cole Beasley) and third in receptions (Beasley and Jason Witten). Dez Bryant is a huge part of the Cowboys Offense, but this is a ridiculous blanket statement.

Did The Dallas Cowboys Offense Drastically Change From 2015 To 2016?

The 2015 Dallas Cowboys were a train wreck in many painful ways; however, from a roster perspective – specifically the offensive starters – not a whole lot changed when Dak Prescott took over.

Andy Benoit on Twitter

Almost hard to evaluate Dak Prescott because his conditions are so favorable (OL, run game, etc.) That’s incredibly rare in NFL.

Andy Benoit is attesting that it’s difficult to evaluate Dak Prescott… because the conditions are so favorable?! These same exact conditions – for the most part, Dez Bryant missed more time in 2015 – existed for Brandon Weeden, Matt Cassel, and Kellen Moore just one year before Prescott’s arrival. Were the Offensive Line and stout run game (Darren McFadden finished 4th in rushing, the Cowboys as a team finished 9th) a favorable environment then?

Also let’s discuss how ridiculous this is besides Andy’s ignoring of the common denominators across 2015-2016. Is the implication here that no NFL quarterback can be properly evaluated if their surrounding circumstances are favorable? Is it a non-negotiable qualifier that a quarterback has to be surrounded by ineptitude for a proper evaluation to be conducted?

I suppose we should all hope that someday Dak Prescott will be surrounded by the worst talent to ever suit up in the NFL so that we can FINALLY get a proper evaluation of who he is. Yea, that makes sense. This isn’t dumb. Nope, not at all.

Tell us what you think about “Is Evaluating Dak Prescott Really This Hard?” in the comments below. You can also email me at RJ.Ochoa@SlantSports.com, or Tweet to me at @RJOchoa!

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I like long walks on the beach, mystery novels, no just kidding those suck. The Dallas Cowboys were put on this earth for us all to love and appreciate. I do that 24/7/365. I also love chicken parmesan. Let's roll. @RJOchoa if you wanna shout!

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2 Comments
  • dallas1966

    RJ, you hit the head of the nail, again, you’re batting 1.0000. Anyway, these so called experts, twitter, anything to receive followers, by throwing stuff, against the wall, to see if it sticks, in order, to influence public opinion.

    These so called experts, are like the blind leading the blind. Dak’s talent comes every fifteen years. I wonder did our friend Andy, twitter, those thoughts, on Tom Brady, Ben Rothenberger, or Russell Wilson. I don’t think so.

    With Dak’s mental toughness, those comments will not phase Dak. Being the quarterback of America Team, is the hardest job in pro sports. That in itself, is enough for a person to handle, let alone in being successful. How About Dem Cowboys!! Dak Attack!!

  • John Williams

    And yet, people have always been quick to evaluate Romo as an average quarterback even though he carried below average rosters to 8-8 seasons and when he finally had a very talented roster, 12-4.

    Yes, Dak has great talent around him. But that great talent around him also had a great talent around them. Dak.

    You are absolutely right in that 2015 should make any “Dak has great talent around him” arguments obsolete, but sigh, they don’t.

Dallas Cowboys

Can Cowboys Trust Guard Jonathan Cooper in 2018?

Jess Haynie

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Jonathan Cooper

One of the big decisions facing the Dallas Cowboys in the 2018 offseason is at left guard. Veteran Jonathan Cooper started 13 games last year and is now a free agent. Should Dallas bring Cooper back, or should they look elsewhere for next season’s starter?

With a lot of money already being spent on the rest of the starting offensive line, the Cowboys need a bargain at left guard. They didn’t re-sign Ronald Leary in 2017 for that very reason, hoping Cooper or Chaz Green would be able to handle the job for a fraction of what Leary got from the Denver Broncos.

Cooper took over for Green in Week 4 and held the job the rest of the season. The Cowboys rushing attack remained one of the league’s best, even performing well later in the year when Ezekiel Elliott was suspended. It looked like Jonathan could become part of future plans.

However, in Week 17, Cooper went out of the game with a knee injury. It thankfully wasn’t serious and he is expected to be ready for 2018. However, it was a reminder of the injury-plagued past that has caused the former first-round pick so much trouble.

Jonathan Cooper

Dallas Cowboys Guard Jonathan Cooper

Taken seventh overall in 2013 by the Arizona Cardinals, Jonathan Cooper was one of the true blue-chip guard prospects in recent draft history. He seemed like a can’t-miss pick, and interior linemen don’t often go that high in the draft. The Cowboys have even said they coveted Cooper in that class.

But constant battles with injuries caused Cooper to be traded, released, and discarded by the Cardinals, New England Patriots, and Cleveland Browns over his first four seasons. While 2017 was looking like a turning point for him, Jonathan’s injury in the season finale was a sobering reminder of why he’s become a bargain-bin player.

Still, at just 28-years-old, Cooper has good years left and will now have another offseason for continuity and chemistry development with the Cowboys.

Dallas should have to pay more than a few million to keep Cooper on the roster.

If Dallas is leery (no pun intended) of Cooper, they will have options. La’el Collins could move back to the guard position, allowing the Cowboys to go find either the best guard or tackle who would fit with their existing group.

Given so many other considerations this offseason, Dallas will likely try to simplify things by giving Jonathan Cooper another chance. His history is a red flag, but sometimes you have to take those gambles and save salary cap space to handle other needs.

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Orlando Scandrick Talks Cowboys’ Disappointing Season on FOX Sports

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Cowboys Headlines - Forget the Triplets: Cowboys Need The Underrated to Shine in 2016
Ashley Landis / The Dallas Morning News

For better or worse, the Cowboys don’t even need to play football to be all over national TV. I guess it’s just part of being the one and only America’s Team. For the second consecutive week, Fox Sports had a Dallas Cowboys’ player on set for Fox’s “Undisputed.”

Just a week ago, Brice Butler made waves with some controversial comments that failed to make him look like a “great teammate.”

This time, Fox’s guest was Cowboys’ Cornerback Orlando Scandrick. Unlike Butler, I really think we should give Scandrick credit for being a very good teammate, and acting like one on his TV appearance.

Throughout the segment, it feels as if Orlando is being tricked into saying something against his teammates. Skip Bayless and Shannon Sharpe start bashing on Dez Bryant‘s performance and the fact that he should be replaced.

Of course, this is the kind of stuff fans in Cowboys Nation are thinking about. Heck, I really wouldn’t even mind if Dez isn’t wearing a star next season. However, I really disliked Butler’s comments when asked if he would’ve done a better job if given the same opportunities as Dez.

Scandrick’s responses were awesome though. When asked if he would defend Dez, he didn’t even hesitate.

“I don’t think he’s lost any confidence. He’s one of the most confident players I’ve ever been around. I think it can all be fixed. I think he just needs to get back to work and get back to the basics.” – Orlando Scandrick on Dez Bryant.

Scandrick also answered questions about what went wrong with the Cowboys this season by pointing out the fact they lost one of their best players because of a suspension, and some injuries. But he also said what’s been in our minds for a long time. When asked what was the biggest reason they struggled, he said some painful, yet truthful words: “We played some bad football against some very good teams.”

Later, he was asked about how Sean Lee’s absence affected the defense, he insisted they didn’t step up. At the end of the day, the NFL is a league in which you can’t be that dependent on a single player.

Sean Lee is an awesome player, but I think we’d all like to see this defense be a little less dependent on him.

Scandrick even had to defend Dak Prescott.

Dak was highly criticized after a sophomore season in which he struggled, alongside the entire team. But in the words of Orlando, we should “give him time.” Dak had a lot on his plate, but he made a lot of progress for the Cowboys.

You can listen to the entire interview here.

Orlando Scandrick’s time in Dallas may be coming to an end, especially with young guys like Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis taking over. He’s signed through 2019, so who knows; maybe we see him wearing the star for a bit longer.

“It’s always a possibility.” – Orlando Scandrick on potentially not returning to Dallas next season.

Even still, it’s nice to see him support his football team and his friends on a show which featured a non-starting Cowboys’ wide receiver taking shots against his team. Orlando Scandrick deserves an applause.

Tell me what you think about “Orlando Scandrick Talks Cowboys’ Disappointing Season on FOX Sports” in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 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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Dallas Cowboys

Should Cowboys Pursue Veteran Backup at Quarterback?

Jess Haynie

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Cowboys en Español: Cooper Rush
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys only have two quarterbacks under contract right now, starter Dak Prescott and backup Cooper Rush. With only three years of combined experience between them, one could argue that a veteran presence would be useful. Should Dallas make a veteran QB a free-agent priority in the 2018 offseason?

Of course, there’s plenty of other QB experience on the Cowboys staff. Head Coach Jason Garrett played professionally from 1989-2004, and started his coaching career with quarterbacks.

Scott Linehan has been coaching offense with an emphasis on the passing game for 30 years.

Kellen Moore, who is taking over for the departed Wade Wilson as quarterbacks coach, has played very recently and will bring a fresh perspective.

However, losing Wilson’s experience from the room, and the lack of any veteran player at QB, shouldn’t be dismissed.

Dak Prescott has said veteran Mark Sanchez — who was with Dallas in 2016 — was a major help during his whirlwind rookie season. Tony Romo enjoyed veteran advice from guys like Brad Johnson, Jon Kitna, and Kyle Orton throughout his playing career.

This isn’t to say Dallas would want to bring in a veteran to knock Cooper Rush down the depth chart. After a surprising preseason, Rush took the backup job from Kellen Moore and certainly has intriguing upside.

If the Cowboys were to add a veteran, that player would have to come in with the understanding he’s competing with Cooper and may not be guaranteed a job.

The good news is that it’ll be a buyer’s market for veteran quarterbacks this offseason.

Guys like Ryan Fitzpatrick, Josh McCown, and Matt Moore could all be available. Even a player with more pedigree, such as Sam Bradford, may have trouble finding starting work with many jobs taken among the NFL’s 32 teams.

Dallas could even consider bringing back Mark Sanchez, given his previous relationship with Dak Prescott. He only had a one-year deal with the Chicago Bears.

Given Prescott’s seeming durability, Dallas will likely only keep two quarterbacks on the 53-man roster in 2018 and for years to come. Because of that, they may be content to focus on Dak and Cooper Rush, and just get through the offseason with training camp bodies.

However, the case can certainly be made for adding another veteran player with the desire to teach to help these young quarterbacks develop. Prescott was not the same guy in 2017 that we saw as a rookie, and perhaps the absence of guys like Sanchez and Tony on the sideline had something to do with that.

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