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Is it Time to Stop Making Excuses for QB Dak Prescott?

Brian Martin

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Time to Stop Making Excuses for QB Dak Prescott?

I think it's time we take off our rose-colored glasses and start looking at Quarterback Dak Prescott with fresh eyes. It's time to reassess him as a starting caliber QB and forget all about what he's accomplished thus far in his young career.

Unfortunately, there's something clearly wrong with the Dallas Cowboys passing game and I hate to say it, but I think it all falls at the feet of Dak Prescott. It's time we take our blinders off Cowboys Nation and stop making excuses for him. It's not doing us or him any good.

It just looks as if Prescott has lost any of that magic he had his rookie season. That year he was one of the better QBs in the NFL, but now he is arguably one of the worst, if not the worst. Making excuses for his performance isn't doing him any good. I'm guilty of it myself, but it might be time to reevaluate the Cowboys QB position.

I know you've probably heard all of the excuses as to why Dak Prescott and the Cowboys passing game is pretty much nonexistent. But if not, let me refresh your memory…

Excuse #1: Scott Linehan's Playcalling

I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a fan of Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan's playcalling, but it's been good enough for Dak Prescott to be more productive in the passing game. Unfortunately, Prescott just isn't executing very well. We have seen I don't know how many inaccurate/off target throws already this year from him. Linehan can only do so much. It's up to Prescott to get through his progressions and make an accurate throw to the open receiver.

Excuse #2: Wide Receivers Aren't Getting Open

This receiving core was put together because they were supposed to be able to create separation on their own with better route running. This was supposed to help Dak Prescott take the next step in his development, but that obviously hasn't happened. The Cowboys WRs are getting opened by NFL standards, but we all know he isn't going to throw his pass catchers open or throw into tight windows. He has to have someone wide open in order for him to pull the trigger.

Excuse #3: Offensive Line Playing Poorly

I honestly find people saying the offensive line's poor play is affecting Dak Prescott's performance laughable. Troy Aikman actually mentioned it Sunday afternoon against the Seattle Seahawks as well, but I'm not buying it. Yes, they aren't playing up to their normal standards, but they are providing more than enough time for Prescott to find success in the passing game. Typically, the OL is supposed to give their QB at least three seconds to get rid of the ball. The Cowboys OL is providing that and more, but Prescott is still managing to hold on the ball way too long.

✭✭✭✭✭

If you can't tell already, I'm done making excuses for Dak Prescott. We all wanted to believe the Dallas Cowboys got lucky by finding a starting caliber quarterback with a fourth-round selection, but that belief has all but dissipated. It's probably time for them to focus in on next year's QB draft class and invest in one early. After all, almost every single starting QB around the league was a high draft pick.

I just think it's time for this experiment to end before Dallas is too heavily invested in someone who isn't showing any signs of improvement. Instead, he's probably regressed. Luckily, we can take comfort in the fact the Cowboys didn't invest a high draft pick in what looks to be a failure. We can take solace in knowing that it's just a fourth-round pick, not a first like the Denver Broncos with their selection of Paxton Lynch.

Whatever the Dallas Cowboys decide to do with Dak Prescott is completely on them, but you at least know where I stand. The wrong decision here could set the team back for years.

Where do you stand? Are you done making excuses for QB Dak Prescott?



Level C2/C3 quadriplegic. College graduate with a bachelors degree in sports and health sciences-concentration sports management. Sports enthusiast. Dallas Cowboys fanatic. Lover of life with a glass half-full point of view.

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Paul Gallagher

    September 26, 2018 at 9:00 am

    100% accurate. He badly misses at least three wide open guys a game and its not like the other throws are much better. As Parcells liked to say “you are what your record says you are”. Daks numbers are terrible.

    • Brian Martin

      Brian Martin

      September 26, 2018 at 9:05 am

      Paul, I’ve been holding out hope Prescott can improve, but I think I’ve all but given up now.

  2. oneputter

    September 26, 2018 at 10:00 am

    well he is what he is a 4th rd QB who fell into a good situation with a very nice rookie season.

    he is not able to anticipate routes, he expects WR’s to be as open as they were in college, here the windows are so small. he cannot be afraid to make a mistake / int, he needs to trust the WR’s and put the ball in a spot / throw them open. i think he has gotten into throwing the ball with way too much velocity, certain routes i understand that has to happen but not on all throws, plus bad feet / bad base can lead to inaccurate throws, it starts from the ground up, good feet / good foundation.

    i feel the routes in this system don’t help him either. there needs to be more crossing routes, short, medium and deep, we just don’t see that here with this inept offense.

    i think he needs veteran leadership, he does not have that now. when mark sanchez was here he was always in dak’s ear, i think he needs that. say what you will about sanchez but i feel he got dak playing like he did in his rookie season. this veteran experience goes a long way in the QB room….

    • Brian Martin

      Brian Martin

      September 26, 2018 at 11:58 am

      I think it was more Tony Romo’s influence on Prescott’s rookie season than it was Mark Sanchez. But, I do agree with the point you are making as well as everything else you stated.

      • oneputter

        September 28, 2018 at 10:14 am

        in all the games when dak was shown on the SL’s it was mark talking to him, rarely did i see romo over there talking to him. romo lost his job to dak, he was far from wanting to help him.

        go back and watch some of those games.

  3. Travis Diggs

    September 26, 2018 at 11:13 am

    So were done with Prescott just like that?? But we made 12 years of excuses for Romo’s blunders in Seattle, 9-7 after 9-7, and bad play and big games. Don’t act like we didn’t make EVERY excuse in the book for romo. Dak needs to play better but its not just him, how many drops/strips came from wrs and zeke vs seattle, its not all Dak

    • Brian Martin

      Brian Martin

      September 26, 2018 at 11:55 am

      Yes, I’m losing faith in Prescott quickly. I’m beginning to believe he is nothing more than a game manager who has to rely on his mobility to have any kind of offensive productivity. Here we are in Year 3 and he’s still failed to show any improvement in the passing game. His inaccuracy, indecision, and struggles reading defenses are severely hamstringing the Cowboys offense. I don’t know about you, but I expect much more out of my starting QB

  4. Jeff S

    September 26, 2018 at 1:44 pm

    Sorry, but to anyone that is a fan of the SEC, this is no surprise. Dak has never been accurate, I have NO idea what the boys saw in him and thought wow his accuracy will improve at the next level. As far as QB’s go, I always thought he could make a viable TE in the pro’s if someone gave him a shot. He basically came from the Tim Tebow offense under Mullins which was run first, run second and jump pass if needed. Now in the cowboys defense there was never a play for him to be on the field his first year, maybe Garrett saw a project that he could bring along but if that’s the case, why would you burn a 4th round pick on a project? Good teams can gamble, but the boys haven’t been a good team for a LONG LONG LONG time, unfortunately cuz jurrah still thinks they are contenders.

  5. Jeremy Mileski

    October 5, 2018 at 3:35 pm

    Good points and totally agree. He needs to go

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Star Blog

Could Loaded FA Safety Market Drive Down Earl Thomas’ Value?

Brian Martin

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Could Loaded FA Safety Class Drive Down Earl Thomas' Price Tag?

It's no secret the Dallas Cowboys and Earl Thomas share a mutual interest in one another. Thomas has publicly stated his desire to join America's Team and the Cowboys did their darndest to make that happen last offseason. Nothing ever materialized a year ago, but it's looking as if the stars have finally aligned and a union between the two could merely be just weeks away.

Surprisingly enough, the Dallas Cowboys may have dodged a bullet last year when the Seattle Seahawks refused to part ways with their All-Pro safety. Not only would they have had to surrender a high draft pick, but they would've also had to extend Thomas' contract. Fortunately, timing is everything and now the Cowboys might just have to do the latter.

A potential contract between the Cowboys and Thomas is of course what I want to dive in today. I'm not going to get into numbers right now, because it's nearly impossible to project any kind of contract for any safety this offseason, especially for the former Seahawk, Earl Thomas.

Earl Thomas

Free Agent FS Earl Thomas (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Right now, it's a little difficult to know who might have the advantage in contract negotiations, Earl Thomas or the Dallas Cowboys. A lot of times the one that has the leverage, however slight, is the one that gets the better of the deal. As surprising as it may be, the Cowboys might just have the advantage here and I'll tell you why.

First off, this year's market for free agent safeties is pretty stacked with starting caliber players. See below:

  • Earl Thomas
  • Landon Collins
  • Lamarcus Joyner
  • Tyrann Mathieu
  • Adrian Amos
  • Clayton Geathers
  • Ha-Ha Clinton Dix
  • Glover Quinn
  • Tre Boston
  • Kenny Vaccaro
  • George Iloka
  • Jimmie Ward
  • Adrian Phillips

Earl Thomas is obviously the headliner here amongst the free agent safeties, but having so many starting caliber players available could drive down Thomas' market value just a bit. This is especially true when you take into consideration the market for FA safeties just a year ago. It was almost a complete standstill last year, with only Kurt Coleman signing a three-year $16.5 million deal with the New Orleans Saints. Not even the "Honey Badger" Tyrann Mathieu could get more than a one-year deal.

With all of these safeties available in free agency, we could be looking at another stingy market. This of course could be good or bad news for the Dallas Cowboys, especially as it pertains to Earl Thomas. Since he is the top FA safety available, everything could once again be at a standstill until he is signed.

Earl Thomas

Free Agent FS Earl Thomas (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Of course, we all know this will ultimately come down to determining Earl Thomas' market value. There is no denying he is still arguably the best free safety in the game today, but there are concerns about his age (30) and the two lower leg injuries he's sustained in the past three years.

Even with the loaded free agent market of starting caliber safeties and Thomas' age and recent injury history, he's still likely to receive a contract that earns him $10 million annually, give or take. It wouldn't surprise me at all if he gets another four-year deal worth $40 million, $25.7 million guaranteed, with a $9.5 million signing bonus like he signed with the Seahawks back in 2014.

The Cowboys of course would probably find a four-year $40 million deal for Earl Thomas acceptable. They would more than likely frontload the contract with a lot of protection in the details. They have the cap space to make this happen and still be able to sign their own, so money shouldn't be a problem.

Now, whether or not Thomas' market value may dip a little due to all of the above mentioned reasons will be something we will have to wait and find out. Regardless, I'd be a little shocked if Earl Thomas doesn't finish his career with the Dallas Cowboys.

Do you think Earl Thomas' market value will take a little hit this offseason?



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Star Blog

Acquiring Brown Will Give Dallas Twin Turbo Terrors

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Acquiring Brown Will Give Dallas Twin Turbo Terrors

What a difference a receiver makes, right? As Dallas fans, we know the impact of a player who can shake coverage, get open, and catch the ball. How was the season going before the Cowboys pulled the trigger for Amari Cooper in the deal with the Raiders? Cooper proved to be the lightning rod and a turning point in a season that was growing increasingly dismal. Dak Prescott and Cooper went together like peanut butter and jelly, while the Cowboys stormed to a division title and a postseason berth.

Now, imagine all of that times two… maybe even two and a half if Antonio Brown could be had from the Steelers. Scary right? We understand there’s only one ball to go around but that didn’t stop Kevin Durant from joining the Warriors, did it?

As of this writing, the best online sportsbooks like Intertops, are dealing Dallas as the seventh of 16 choices to win the NFC championship at odds of 12-1. Imagine how those odds would shrink if Brown wore a Cowboys uniform next season, giving Prescott the luxury of not one upper echelon wideout but that plus an elite receiver. Hut, hut, hut and a few clouds of smoke later the Cowboys would be moving the chains or celebrating in the endzone.

Brown and Cooper would be a devastating combination with Ezekiel Elliott coming out of the backfield. Brown was made for Dallas, it gives him an even grander stage than the one he shared with Ben Roethlisberger and Le’Veon Bell in Pittsburgh.

Despite the fact that the 'Boys haven’t won a Super Bowl since Barry Switzer was roaming the sidelines in the mid-90s, America’s Team still resides in Dallas. But we need a game-changer and Brown is just such an athlete. But what do we give in return and will that cost be worth whatever productive years Brown has left after this one? Let’s not forget that the mercurial Miami native will be 31 when the season begins and men who make a living with their legs don’t get better at that age. But Brown is so good and so unique that, even if he drops half a click, he's still amongst the best in the game.

That level of talent is hard to replicate and it could be the missing piece which allows Dallas to be a legitimate Super Bowl contender next season and the year after.

However, up to this point, we’ve been very good at dreaming of a Brown to Dallas trade but haven’t quite worked out the details. It takes two to tango and if we expect to get the Steelers’ attention we need to give them something valuable in return. Dallas surrendered their first-round pick (27th) this season when they traded for Cooper so that’s no longer an asset.

Pittsburgh would be vying for a first-round pick (and likely more) for Brown's services but some have speculated Dallas would consider dealing rookie-standout Leighton Vander Esch.

Wait... what? We know, you’re clutching your pearls, and the words are stuck in your gasp. We get it. The kid was a home run this past season, leading the Dallas defense in tackles and earning a Pro Bowl invitation in his inaugural NFL season. But this would be a Faustian deal.

The Cowboys give up a player who is poised to be a stud for years to come for a playmaker in Brown that could render a Super Bowl in the immediate future. Brown's expiration date will surely turn his milk sour sooner rather than later, but in the here and now, Antonio Brown could be the bell cow who leads the Cowboys to the promised land before he’s put out to pasture.

Just something to think about...



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Star Blog

2018 In Review: CB Anthony Brown Bounces Back

Kevin Brady

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Anthony Brown's Resurgence A Great Sign for Cowboys Defense
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

To say it's been an up-and-down start to the career of young cornerback Anthony Brown would be an understatement.

As a sixth round pick in 2016, everything Brown contributed during his rookie season was a plus. Due to injury he was asked to step into a greater role as the season went on, and he performed well enough to make the front office comfortable allowing multiple veterans to walk for nothing in free agency the following Spring. Brown looked like a legitimate starting cornerback in the league, and when Dallas brought in Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis during the next draft, the young secondary seemed set.

Then 2017 happened. And Anthony Brown struggled. Really struggled.

These struggles, coupled with the emergence of both Lewis and Awuzie during their own rookie seasons, made Brown's status heading into 2018 rather uncertain. Some wondered if they would trade him for a day three pick, others thought Brown could even end up being cut. Jourdan Lewis and Anthony Brown were slated to compete for the nickel cornerback job in training camp, and as it turned out, all Brown needed was that one extra chance to compete.

Brown won the job outright during the preseason, and began 2018 as the starting nickel. A fan favorite, most thought Lewis would reclaim his rightful spot on the depth chart sooner or later, but Anthony Brown's play (and Kris Richard's preferences) kept Lewis on the bench for much of the season.

Simply put, Anthony Brown balled in 2018, and was the Cowboys' second best corner for most of the year. By the end of the season Chidobe Awuzie had regained form, but Brown and Byron Jones were the most consistently reliable corners on the roster all of 2018.

Brown tallied 44 tackles, 2 sacks, and an interception in 2018, and finished third on the team in pass breakups with 8. As the slot corner Brown had an excellent season, especially for a former sixth round pick.

Now he enters a contract year, and with the Cowboys having so many guys to pay over the next two offseasons, he could find himself as an unrestricted free agent in 2020. And if he can keep up his play from last year moving forward, he could be in for a nice payday that Spring.



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