With the Senior Bowl coming up, it's time to reflect on how Dak Prescott ended up a Dallas Cowboy.
On Jan. 27, 2016, the day before the Senior Bowl, the Cowboys’ coaches had an hour to meet with the players from the South team at the Renaissance. Because of the time crunch, there were no individual sessions. What might have been a message for one quarterback was a message for all quarterbacks.
"We just kind of talked to them," quarterbacks coach Wade Wilson recalled the week before Prescott started his first game.
Garrett, offensive coordinator Scott Linehan and Wilson immediately were struck by Prescott.
"By far, Dak was the most assertive and confident player in there," Wilson said. "Whatever that 'it' factor is, he had it above the other three. Very confident and very poised in the interview process."
Apparently, despite leading the Dallas Cowboys, who were coming off a 4-12 season, to an NFC best 13-3 record, Dak Prescott continues to get no respect from some quarters. Here are Gosselin's top-10 NFL quarterbacks.
1. Aaron Rodgers
2. Tom Brady
3. Matt Ryan
4. Ben Roethlisberger
5. Derek Carr
6. Russell Wilson
7. Drew Brees
8. Andrew Luck
9. Marcus Mariota
10. Matthew Stafford
Several versions of this article today. Translation? We can't talk to the media now about Tony Romo because we need to start gauging interest from other teams.
"I’m not going to get into that at all – whether we’ve talked or not," Jones said. "We’re at a juncture now that, we need to just cool it in our public conversations about what we’re going to be doing or not doing there with Tony."
Apparently Zeke and running backs coach Gary Brown had a brief discussion of Eric Dickerson's rookie rushing record before the season just to get it out of the way. As it turned out, he could have caught Dickerson if given enough carries, but the team goals were far more important. But that's just the top of the story, which provides a great recap to Zeke's amazing year.
"There's a lot of talk about [the record]. Let's me and you address it in the room right now and get rid of it," Brown told the rookie before the season opener. "If it happens, it happens. If it doesn't, it doesn't."
Elliott shares an agent with Dickerson, who is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
"Coach, I don't even think that much about it," said Elliott, who admitted he had discussed the prospect of breaking the record with Dickerson.
"It was like that pink elephant in the room," Brown said. "Let's talk about it and let's deal with it. At the end of the day, whether he gains 1,800 yards or 1,100 yards, if we're winning games, he's doing what's necessary and what the job requires to win."
The headline alludes to the domestic violence issue that the NFL still hasn't closed. Why does the league think it's helping its image by dragging its feet so long over these types of issues? On the field, Archer wonders if Zeke will start targeting a 2,000 yard season.
Only Eric Dickerson (1,808 yards, 1984) and George Rogers (1,674 yards, 1981) had more yards than Elliott (1,631) as rookies in NFL history. He led the NFL in rushing. The last rookie to do that was Edgerrin James in 1999. He had seven 100-yard rushing games and five of more than 130 yards.
Much was expected of Elliott when the Cowboys took him with the fourth overall pick and he delivered while seeing action in 15 games.
Phillips likes Cole Beasley, David Irving, Terrell McClain, Chris Jones, and Anthony Hitchens.
"He finds a way to get open," Prescott said in September. "Beasley is always open."
For the first time in his five-year career, Beasley led the Cowboys in catches (75) and receiving yards (833), both career bests. He delivered three of his five touchdown catches in the three October games Dez Bryant missed with a knee injury.
And, perhaps the best measure of his reliability, Beasley ranked 12th in the NFL catching 76.5 percent of the passes thrown his way (75 of 98, according to STATs via the Washington Post).
We know about Dan Bailey, and L.P. Ladouceur, who never misses a snap, but it's worth giving a shout out to Chris Jones, who did more than just punt this season. He showed he's a well-rounded athlete.
Jones showed his athleticism this year with a 30-yard run on a fake punt against the Philadelphia Eagles and a crunching sideline tackle of Detroit returner Andre Roberts. He had a consistent season, averaging a career-high 45.9 yards on 58 punts with a net average of 40.5. He had only four punts go for touchbacks and 25 ended up inside the 20. He had a punt blocked in the regular-season finale when he was forced to punt out of his own end zone but it was hardly his fault. He consistently gave his punt coverage team chances to make plays.
Though in the Morning News, it's an article about Bryan Broaddus's views on who the Cowboys should try to re-sign.
"I think you have to bring Terrance Williams back and I would take him over Brice Butler. I think Terrance Williams does things for you not only in the passing game -- I know people are very critical, including me, of the inconsistencies sometimes with catching the football -- but I think that for the most part, though, he has done what he needed to do. Is he a No. 1 [receiver]? No, probably not. But you know what? He's gonna get paid like he's a No. 1 and I think that's the reality of it, though.
"But I would consider trying to bring him back. I think he likes it here. I think [wide receivers coach] Derek Dooley has done a really nice job with him. There's a lot of things you can do with him. You know, he did only make $724,000 last year. Where does he fall? Is he in that Kenny Britt range of the $4.5-million player? You know, that's who you gotta think. I think maybe that's where the price of poker is probably gonna start."
Stephen Jones would like to bring everyone back, or at least "try." In other words, for the right price.
Stephen Jones said he'd like to re-sign Carr, Claiborne, Church and Wilcox. He also said he'd like to bring back receivers Terrance Williams and Brice Butler, both of whom are also unrestricted free agents.
"All those are guys we'd like to sign," Stephen Jones said. "You got to make it all work. And sometimes as we all know, you don't get to sign them all back. That doesn't mean you don't try."