Now is the time the Dallas Cowboys’ focus changes and they turn their eyes toward preparations for the upcoming 2018 season. This means they start to question every little aspect about what went right in 2017 and what went wrong. One such question is what do they really have in quarterback Dak Prescott?
Prescott has had kind of a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde first two seasons with the Cowboys. He could do no wrong in 2016 and ended up having one of the best rookie QB seasons in the history of the league. But, Prescott’s poor performance of 2017 has left a lot of Cowboys Nation with a bad taste in their mouth.
Determining exactly what the Cowboys have in Dak Prescott really depends on if you’re the type of person who focuses on what he has done in his first two years in the league, or if you focus more on just 2017.
It’s hard to argue either, so I’ll let you decide amongst yourselves where you stand. But, maybe I can help you make up your mind by giving you a few facts to chew on.
Dak Prescott as Dr. Jekyll
You may or may not remember, but Dr. Jekyll was the “good guy”. In an attempt to suppress his inner demons, he created a serum in hopes of silencing the darkness within him. This is exactly who Dak Prescott was in his rookie season.
He put his nose to the grindstone and worked his tail off in order to find success, and it worked.
Prescott has won 22 of his first 32 regular-season games in the NFL. That is second-best behind only Russell Wilson (24) since the 1970 merger. He is also just outside the top-10, at number 11, in passing touchdowns (45) and passing yards (6,991) the last two years.
That’s pretty impressive for a guy who was chosen in the fourth round with the second of the Cowboys fourth-round draft picks. Even more impressive is the fact Prescott is the only Dallas Cowboys quarterback to throw for 3,000 yards in each of the first two seasons.
Unfortunately, Prescott may have just set the bar way too high for himself during his rookie season.
It would’ve been nearly impossible to put up the same kind of numbers in 2017, but that’s what a lot of Cowboys fans expected. Right?
Fair or not, that’s just the way things work.
Dak Prescott as Mr. Hyde
Remember, Dr. Jekyll was the good guy, but the serum he developed to suppress his demons ended up doing something completely unexpected. The serum released all the bad within him and created his alter ego, Mr. Hyde. This is how I would describe Dak Prescott after watching the way he played in 2017.
What made Prescott so good as a rookie was his ability to prevent turnovers. Unfortunately, that was one of his downfalls this season.
He threw nearly three times as many interceptions (13) than he did as a rookie (4). He also had eight games where he threw for less than 200 yards, and saw his completion percentage go from 67.8% to 62.9% this year. His yards per attempt also took a hit from 8 to 6.8.
But, he wasn’t far off on his passing touchdowns this season. He only finished with one less than he did in 2016.
Unfortunately, Prescott just didn’t quite seem the same this season.
It looked as if he had a really hard time reading defenses and wasn’t as accurate with his passes as he was as a rookie. Of course, he had to carry the load a little more this season due to Ezekiel Elliott’s suspension, but he looked as if he might’ve buckled under the pressure a little.
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As you can see, there are both positives and negatives to the way Dak Prescott has played his first two seasons with the Dallas Cowboys. It’s now up to the organization to determine whether or not they have a Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde on their hands. That’s why the evaluation process is so important during the off-season.
And every single player on the roster will likely get the same treatment.
I don’t know how you personally feel about Prescott, but I still believe he can be the Cowboys future QB, despite his struggles this season. If the Cowboys could’ve avoided some key injuries and suspensions, we probably aren’t even having this conversation. But, I’m not really the kind of person who likes to play the “what if” game.