From the moment he was injured in the 19-3 opening season loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dak Prescott has been looking to return to the field as soon as possible. Fans may finally have a definitive timeline as they could see Prescott back on the field sooner rather than later.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Sunday that Dak Prescott had his stitches removed and started throwing the football for the first time last week. He is looking to return for their week five matchup against the Los Angeles Rams. The Cowboys will be cautious though and could push back his return for the week six game against the Philadelphia Eagles depending on his progress, sources told Schefter.
Cowboys’ QB Dak Prescott, who had the stitches removed from his surgically repaired thumb and began throwing a football this past week, is eyeing next Sunday's game against the Rams for a possible return, per sources.https://t.co/67Kd33p9f5 — Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 2, 2022
Prescott injured his thumb in the week one game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers game. He made the decision to get surgery a day after the game to start the recovery process. He finished the game with 134 yards and one interception in a little more than three-quarters of play before getting knocked out of the game. The initial timeline for him to return was between six to eight weeks. Prescott has shown good progress with the team focused on how he feels when gripping the football and throwing it.
Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones isn’t so sure if Dak Prescott will be able to return to the game against the Rams.
“I don’t have any way, have no way, by talking to a doctor or even by talking with Dak, I have no way to assess whether he’s going to be able to play this week.” Jerry Jones, Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager
One reason for the potential delay in Dak Prescott’s return has been the impressive play of Cooper Rush who has started the season 3-0 as the starting quarterback of the Cowboys. Rush has defeated the Bengals, Giants, and Commanders in his first three starts throwing for 737 yards and four touchdowns with no interceptions.
Most Likely Scenario For Dak Prescott
Dallas must think about what is best for the future of the franchise and most likely what will happen is Dak Prescott sitting out against the Rams. The team is off to a fast start without him and rushing him back at this point would have more risk than reward to it. Dallas struggled in their week one game with Prescott at quarterback. While this doesn’t mean Rush is better than Dak Prescott, the team seems to be clicking more with Rush this season so it makes sense to let him continue to play.
Something to think about is the Rams have one of the best pass rushers in the league with Aaron Donald. While the offensive line for Dallas has been stellar up to this point, not many people can block Donald and the reality is the interior offensive line is not as strong as the tackle positions. Dallas shouldn’t want Prescott to take those hits just yet until he is 100 percent healthy. Let someone like Rush take those hits when he has already been taking the hits through three weeks.
Cooper Rush has built a strong relationship with the receiving core, especially with Noah Brown and CeeDee Lamb who have been his top two targets. That chemistry is hard to break when the team is on the winning streak it is currently on. No reason to mess with it when there isn’t any issue with it. With Michael Gallup in the picture as well, it will only continue to help with that chemistry.
This situation has presented an opportunity for Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Kellen Moore to get more creative and more strategic with his play calling. Before Dak Prescott’s injury, Moore was committed to passing the ball more often than running it. Now with Rush in at quarterback, it opened the door up for Ezekiel Elliot and Tony Pollard to get more carries and touches to make an impact on the offense. The offense is now more balanced between the pass and run which makes the offense more unpredictable with its play calling throughout the game.
Dak Prescott’s focus right now should not be whether he can play on Sunday against the Rams. It should be making sure he is fully healthy and ready to make a run at the division. Beating the Rams would be a great momentum booster, but it’s not necessary for the future of the season. The most important game of the early season is the showdown with the Philadelphia Eagles. A win in the division will go a long way in fighting for not only the top spot of the NFC East but in the NFC.