Let me offer a comparison to begin:
QB1 last three games: 499 yards, 3 TD’s, 2 INT’s, 79% QB Rating, 58% Completion
QB2 last three games: 595 yards, 2 TD’s, 4 INT’s, 68% QB Rating, 60% completion
Over the last few weeks I’ve noticed a great deal of optimism about the Dallas Cowboys. Rightfully so, Ezekiel Elliott is a legitimate MVP candidate and that 11-game winning streak was no fluke.
But since the Cowboys week 8 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles something hasn’t been right about this team. Sure they were winning, but the supposed gap between them and everyone else in the NFC hasn’t seemed as large to me as it has everyone else. Why? Well, refer back to those numbers for QB1 and QB2 I shared at the beginning of this piece. Both Quarterbacks are leading first place teams and both are expected to be at the helm when their teams, presumably, make the playoffs. QB1 is Dak Prescott of the Dallas Cowboys. QB2?
I am in no way equating the two talent-wise. Osweiler has been a marginal talent (at best) and I’ve always maintained that (confidently, I might add). Prescott has a lot more going for him, but for all the talk of a rookie wall in Dallas Prescott (not Elliott) seems to have hit that wall first.
The good news for Dallas is that Prescott’s issues are fixable, and it doesn’t involve benching him for Tony Romo. One of the things that made Prescott such a dangerous Quarterback early on was his accuracy. An alarming stat Sunday came from ESPN’s Jordan Raanan:
Give credit to the Giants for sure, but let’s also recognize Prescott’s passes were sailing all night; and they have been for a few weeks.
This week we’ll probably hear a lot of talk about benching Prescott and I just don’t believe that’s necessary. In order to change that conversation Prescott will have to display better accuracy on his passes, better footwork in the pocket, and get on the same page as his most important weapon, Dez Bryant. A wrinkle that has been missing for far too long for the Cowboys is the chemistry between Prescott and Bryant. If it continues, the Cowboys can expect another disappointing January.
Given the run the Cowboys have been on in 2016, that isn’t a pleasant thought.