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Who Will Open Up 2021 At Backup Quarterback?

The Cowboys made backup Quarterback a priority last season in signing Andy Dalton. It looked like a move that would pay off after Dak Prescott went down with a season-ending injury in week five, but that wasn’t the case. Dallas lost its next four games and ultimately missed the playoffs with a 6-10 record.

There are several lessons to be learned from this. First, it proves just how elite Prescott truly is. In a season where Dak didn’t even finish five full games, he still finished with more total touchdowns than Giants starter Daniel Jones (13-12, I couldn’t believe it either.).

Second, it shows that even when the rest of your offense stacks up comparably to the best teams in the league, it doesn’t matter if you’re missing the star quarterback. Dalton finished with over 2000 passing yards and a 14-8 TD/INT ratio, but that only translated to a 4-5 record.

Without an elite defense, the margin of error to win in the NFL is so slim if you don’t have an elite-level QB. After learning this lesson the hard way in 2020 the Cowboys have (smartly) decided to dedicate their limited cap space to fill other holes on the roster.

If you look at the current Cowboys depth chart behind Prescott right now you will recognize some familiar names in Cooper Rush, Garrett Gilbert, and Ben DiNucci. With the remaining market for backup QBs drying up quickly, it’s looking more and more likely that Dallas opens up 2021 with one of these three as the backup QB.

In Gilbert’s only start against a tough Steelers team, he finished with 243 yards, one TD, and one INT. DiNucci looked overwhelmed in his limited action as a rookie, finishing with a 53% completion percentage, no TDs, and two fumbles lost. Rush is a guy that has seen basically zero regular-season action but somehow seems to always secure a spot with the Cowboys.

Head coach Mike McCarthy mentioned earlier that he wanted to add some competition for the backup quarterback spot. Jeff Driskel stopped by for a visit but ultimately left without signing a deal. With the remaining free-agent options down to guys like Nick Mullens and Matt Barkley, it is looking like that competition may have to come from in-house.

When it really comes down to it, if Dallas loses Dak again it likely won’t matter who is taking snaps at QB. If I’m the Cowboys GM I would head into the season with the cheapest possible options that already know the offensive system.

Gilbert and DiNucci fit that bill perfectly as they are both on contracts that count for less than a million dollars against the cap and saw the field last season. In my opinion, the smartest play is to just run it back with those two backing up Prescott, and it’s looking like that is the most realistic possibility with each passing day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think?

Comments

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  1. Dalton was 4-5 tell me again what Daks record was in the first 5 games what 1-4 with a miracle and you call that elite come on now you can get the babies to buy that but not me I haven’t seen anything close to elite

  2. I’d cut Dinucci and maybe look to add RG III if you can get him cheap, we still need a viable backup, what do we do if Dak got Covid, or if he gets a minor injury that takes him out a 2 to 3 games ? Missing just 1 or 2 games could be the difference in us making or not making the playoffs,

    I like Gilbert and would like to see more of what he can do in preseason, but not sure I’m ready to handover the reins to being our backup spot, we got a good idea what Dinucci and Rush are so why keep both those guys ? Doesn’t make sense to me, again, I’d cut one prob Dinucci and add RG III if you can get him cheap

  3. Just look back at when we were winning SB’s at what we had as a backup to Troy ! We had a quality guy in Steve Berline so when Troy went down we didn’t miss a beat! That’s what we need now someone who is proven that has won games at the NFL level!

  4. I would cut Dinucci in a hurry. He was unprepared and looked completely lost when giving the opportunity. Dalton was an excellent backup for the Cowboys. He finished with a 4-5 record, but do you honestly believe Dak would have a better record than that ? I truly doubt it. Defense was terrible, and Dalton lost all the offensive line.

  5. I agree. Dinucci can’t cut it and not sure Gilbert can either,
    Do need a quality guy but not sure who’s available.
    Hindsight is 20/20 but should have drafted backup quarterback.
    I thought they should have drafted Sam Ehlinger.

  6. The thing about Gilbert, sure i do like him and i liked what i saw in the Steelers game, he did pretty good, but so did the Cincy Bengals backup QB after the boys game, so how good is Gilbert, idk so for me I’m not prepared to hand the keys to him, so RG III in, Dinucci out and then see what Gilbert can do in preseason, if he looks good then maybe stay with him as backup over RG III, to me, i think that’s the best way to go at this point

  7. Don Howard, and James Vargas…. I think you need to learn a little more about the game of football!! Dak Prescott is an elite QB, if not he’s close to it!! First off James, Dak was playing with most of the offensive line out too, he started the season with both of the tackles out or playing hurt so he had tackles playing that wasn’t any good at the time, those tackles started getting better around the time Dalton got back from his injury!! And another thing to both of you…. Yeah, Dak would have won more than the 4 games that Dalton won, it’s obvious that he could have…. When Dak was playing we were averaging just under 40 points a game, and when Dalton took over we were averaging just over 25 points a game, so if Dalton could win games with this team just scoring around 26 points a game, I guarantee Dak could’ve won just as many if not more while he was scoring 37 points a game!! And another thing that helped Dalton win those games was our defense…. Our defense played horrible when Dak was playing…. Actually they played horribly the whole season, they just played a little better when Dalton and the team won those 4 games!! If Dak had the defense play as good as Dalton did then the chances are the team would’ve had 4 wins before Dak got hurt!! I could go on and on about those stupid comments but I’m not gonna waste anymore of my time!! I really don’t like making comments on these sites, I just like to come on here and read the stories and that’s it, but when I read stupid comments like that, I can’t help but say something, so maybe it’ll show you people how much smarter you can look when you have at least a little bit of common sense, and at least a little bit of knowledge about the game of football!!

  8. Thank you Cowboys fan, for saving met me the trouble of saying the same thing you just did. These are not real COWBOYS FANS, who actually watch games.

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