The Dallas Cowboys are coming off of a disappointing 6-10 campaign and have several questions to answer before the 2021 season begins. At the top of the list is securing a long-term deal with Dak Prescott, something that has been long overdue.
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There's one legendary figure in Dallas that doesn't see that happening.
When it comes to the quarterback position of America's Team, there's no man better qualified to talk about it than Hall of Famer Troy Aikman, who played his entire twelve-year career with the Cowboys and brought three Super Bowl titles to the organization in the 90s. He recently spoke about if he thought the Cowboys would dip their toes in the quarterback pool this offseason and move on from Prescott.
“Well, I wouldn’t rule anything past Jerry. I say that as a compliment. I think he’s always trying to figure out what they can do or how he might be able to do something that will give them a chance. But I don’t see Dak not playing in Dallas… Going back to what we were talking about with Brady and Tampa Bay, it just reiterates the importance of that position,” Aikman said on The Musers on 96.7 FM/1310 AM The Ticket.
Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones said a new deal for Prescott was imminent after the team started 3-0 in 2019 which was fueled by the former fourth-round pick throwing for over 900 yards and nine touchdowns. No such deal ever materialized that season, however, Prescott had a career year. He nearly set a franchise record with 4,902 passing yards and threw for 30 scores, which included Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup each going over the 1,100 yards mark.
That type of performance had many thinking a deal would surely get done in the offseason, but once again, Prescott was put in a position to have to prove himself after being franchise-tagged for $31.4 million last June.
Before his season-ending ankle injury in Week 5, Prescott was on an even bigger tear than he was in 2019. In just five games, he threw for 1,856 yards and became the first quarterback in NFL history with three consecutive games of 450 yards or more. With that being said, it's not hard to understand why Aikman feels the Cowboys will do what it takes to keep Prescott, despite multiple failed attempts to sign him for the foreseeable future.
The Cowboys have only managed three playoff wins since 1996 and haven't been past the second round since their last Super Bowl title in 1995. When addressing the state of the organization, Aikman mentioned that there's a lot more that goes into having a successful team than having a franchise quarterback, using the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as an example.
“Dallas has that guy in Dak and now it’s just a matter of him staying healthy,” Aikman said. “But there’s a lot of other parts to it. There are a lot of things that go into being successful. I’ve said it before, I just don’t think you can come up that short that many times and say that — and this is any organization — and say we’re doing it the right way. I think you have to look at things really, really hard. You may conclude that Tampa really didn’t do anything. I don’t know. But it does get everybody’s attention when you see a team like them bring in Brady and kind of stay the course with Bruce Arians.”
The Cowboys have missed the playoffs for two straight seasons. There's plenty of talent on the roster, and more will be added in the coming months, but a lot needs to be different going forward for them to consistently compete.