The Cowboys lost to the Eagles on Sunday night by way of a poor game from Cooper Rush. With Dak Prescott’s return looming for a week seven home game against the Lions, Rush’s last start likely came last night and now people have a sour taste in their mouths. It is hard to place blame on him because he stepped in and went 4-1 in five starts and has the Cowboys primed for a back-to-back playoff berth. However, there were conversations that Rush could be the guy to man this offense. The thought process was that he was the guy that could lead this team to some semblance of success that Prescott couldn’t.
Last night proved how important Prescott is to not only the heartbeat of the offense, but the team. It quieted any thought of a quarterback controversy. The first person that made it a topic of discussion was the humble, well-mannered owner of the Dallas Cowboys late last month.
He wants Rush, the backup quarterback, to play so well that there would be controversy as to whether Dak Prescott would assume the starting role once he is healthy enough to play after undergoing right thumb surgery last week.
“Of course I would. Of course. That means we’d have won,” Jones said. “If he comes in there and plays as well as Prescott played, Rush? Played that well over these next games ahead? I’d walk to New York to get that.”
As Jones spoke, thoughts of 2016 emerged. Prescott was a rookie fourth-round pick that year, filling in for an injured Tony Romo, who hurt his back in a preseason game. After losing the season opener that year, the Cowboys won a franchise-record 11 straight games and Romo never regained his starting position. Can Rush do that?
“Well, I don’t know that,” Jones said. “You can’t find on record where I said I thought Dak Prescott could do it when he stepped in and had the chance to do that. But he did it.”
The prevailing thought was that there never was a quarterback controversy. When analyzing the play of other NFL quarterbacks this year, Prescott, when healthy, is a top-10 quarterback. Cooper Rush, on the other hand, threw for more than one touchdown just once and maxed out at 235 yards and 21 completions in a single game.
So what does the future with Dak Prescott at the helm mean, exactly? Well, the Cowboys have seemed to figure out how to utilize both Ezekiel Eliott and Tony Pollard. In conjunction with that, their pass protection has been one of the more pleasant surprises of the season. Besides facing the Rams and first ballot Hall-of-Famer Aaron Donald, Rush was not sacked more than once in any game he started. Prescott should use that to his advantage, and with a potential comeback of James Washington, this offense could finally get back to it’s full form. If that is the case and the defense continues on an elite way, this team could be a scary sight come winter time. Emphasis on could.