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NFL Power Rankings Week 9: Star Rookies Dak Prescott & Ezekiel Elliott Push Cowboys To No. 2

A quick review of the latest power rankings, where they rank the Cowboys, and where they rank the rest of the NFC East.

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Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

This may be the least surprising week of power rankings for the Cowboys we've seen in over a decade.

The Cowboys most likely aren't going to be ranked over the Patriots, and there really isn't much of a reason to rank them lower than second overall.

Here's where 10 different power rankings see the Cowboys, and a little further down you'll see their verdict for the other NFC East teams.

Power Rankings

Week 9 Rankings (previous rankings in parenthesis)

FOX Sports - No. 2 (2)

The Cowboys won their most important game of the season as they topped the Eagles in overtime. Dak Prescott rebounded from three-plus quarters of terrible play to win it with a stellar performance down the stretch. Morris Claiborne's and Barry Church’s injuries certainly hurt, but the Cowboys have depth to overcome them. Dallas is the favorite in the NFC right now at 6-1. (Prisco) - No. 2 (2)

At 6-1, they almost have to stay with Dak Prescott now. He showed some magic late against the Eagles. No. 2 (3)

In a game where Dak Prescott wasn't on point, Ezekiel Elliott did not dominate and the Cowboys' offensive line was beaten by the Eagles' pressure often, Dallas still managed to win a tough divisional matchup. And let's give credit to one of the better players in the NFL -- a guy who made the most important plays for Dallas on Sunday night, yet finds himself, as always, behind Prescott, Elliott, Romo, Witten and the O-line in the Cowboy pecking order. Sean Lee plays his tail off every week, leaving it all out on the field. If the Dallas defense is to help this team in the playoffs, you can bet No. 50 in white will be leading the way. Holy cow did he make some big stops on "Sunday Night Football."

Shutdown Corner - No. 2 (3)

The one thing that could derail them is if Ezekiel Elliott gets hurt or just starts to slow down. He has at least 22 carries in six of seven games, and he isn’t afraid to take on defenders. It’s hard for anyone to maintain that pace, especially a rookie.

Bleacher Report - No. 2 (3)

Dak Prescott had his worst outing by far as a pro quarterback.

He still pulled out an overtime win, though. That speaks volumes about the talent and character of this team and should provide a sunny forecast if/when Tony Romo returns.

New York Daily News - No. 2 (3)

I'm stunned at Jerry Jones' announcement that Tony Romo "isn't ready to play" yet in the wake of Dak Prescott's clutch performance to rally Dallas from a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to beat nemesis Philly in overtime Sunday night. The jig is up: It's the rookie's job until he screws up.

USA Today - No. 2 (3)

So if Dak attack derails in Cleveland, and Mark Sanchez plays lights out, wouldn't we have to consider him the starter? No?

ESPN - No. 2 (4)

A big reason for the Cowboys' success is their star rookies: QB Dak Prescott and RB Ezekiel Elliott. According to Elias, Prescott and Johnny Lujack (1948 Bears) are the only rookie quarterbacks to start 6-1 in NFL history.

Washington Post - No. 3 (3)

Dak Prescott wasn’t very good overall Sunday night against the Eagles. But he was very good when it mattered most in crunch time, throwing a tying touchdown pass in regulation to wide receiver Dez Bryant and the winning TD pass in overtime to tight end Jason Witten. That’s what winning quarterbacks do. That’s what Prescott is. The Cowboys very well might be the NFC’s best team right now with him at QB, and there’s no reason whatsoever to consider a switch to Tony Romo as long as that’s the case.

SB Nation - No. 3 (5)

It looked as if the Cowboys might be plummeting in this week’s rankings as they struggled against the Eagles all night on Sunday Night Football, but a late-game rally by Dak Prescott and the offense, including a wide-open Jason Witten touchdown, helped them seal the win in overtime.


The table below summarizes the power rankings for the four NFC East teams and for the Cowboys' next opponent, the mighty Browns.

Dal_medium Phi_medium Nyg_medium Was_medium Cle_medium
Wk9 Wk9 Wk9 Wk9 Wk9
FoxSports 2 11 12 16 32
CBS 2 10 13 14 32 2 8 16 17 32
Shutdown Corner 2 11 13 12 31
B/R 2 8 17 13 31
NY Daily News 2 7 - - - - - -
USA Today 2 14 17 13 32
ESPN 2 10 22 15 32
Washington Post 3 11 14 17 32
SB Nation 3 9 16 11 32
Average 2.2 9.9 15.6 14.2 31.8

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