Dak Prescott is becoming one of the more polarizing figures in the National Football League, even among fans of the team he plays for. Some people love him, some people are calling for a trade up in April’s draft. Either way, his statistics were not at the expected level this past season. So was it his worst season so far?
Prescott completed 261 of 394 passes (66.2 percent) for 2,860 yards, 23 touchdowns and a league-leading, career-high 15 interceptions in the 2022 season Here’s how that compares to his previous campaigns:
His stats this season came in just 12 games played; he missed Weeks 2 through 6 with a fractured thumb on his throwing hand. Extrapolated over a full 17-game season, Prescott would have had 370 completions in 558 attempts (66.3 percent) for 4,052 yards and 33 touchdowns to 21 interceptions.
Moving numbers aside and looking at it from a record perspective, he went 8-4 in the regular season. That marks his third best win percentage since entering the NFL, behind only his rookie season and 2021. On the surface, not too bad.
The turnovers, however, make it a real case for his worst season yet. He threw 15 interceptions, a career-high over 2017’s 13 interceptions. However, he played in four more games in 2017 than this year, which lends credence to it being far and away his highest interception to attempt ratio.
He also threw multiple interceptions in five of the twelve games he played, which is an astonishingly high number for a full season, let alone an abbreviated one. In those 12 regular season games, he threw for 300+ yards just once.
Turnovers aside, although hard to ignore, he threw for 7.3 yards per attempt, good for the second lowest number in his career, again above only 2017. Yards per game also fell into the bottom three of his career at 238.3 yards per game. The only two seasons with lower numbers is, you bet, 2017 and surprisingly, 2016. His ESPN QBR and overall quarterback rating fell into the bottom three and below his career average.
“This is the worst season I’ve ever seen Dak play.”@danorlovsky7 says Dak Prescott is not good right now. #KJM pic.twitter.com/I4aAV6PBjg— Keyshawn, JWill & Max (@KeyJayandMax) January 9, 2023
In the month of December, when the Cowboys offense was foreign to running backs averaging more than four yards per carry, Dak Prescott had the most passing touchdowns and ranked in the top half of the league in both QBR and completion percentage.
Blaming it all on the running backs is hard to do, but blame can be sprinkled throughout the offense, including the wide receiver room.
However, the issues in the passing game could be attributed to the organizations handling of the wide receiver position last offseason. Aside from All-Pro WR CeeDee Lamb, the offense didn’t have a reliable threat to help Prescott when the Cowboys had to throw the ball. That was a big part of Prescott’s story last season, and the team shouldn’t go down the same path again in the upcoming campaign.
Aside from a few errant throws, though, Prescott still ranks among the league’s best quarterbacks. He threw for 23 touchdowns while leading the Cowboys to the fourth-highest scoring offense at 27.5 points a game and the league’s fifth-best third-down conversion rate at 45.5%.
To say 2022 was one of Prescott’s worst seasons is completely justified and the numbers back that claim. However, to tout it as his undeniable worst just because of the sour taste he left from the Divisional Round would be lazy.