Oct 17, 2021; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) throws the ball against the New England Patriots during the second half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Cowboys QB Dak Prescott spotted at The Star sans boot

Quarterback Dak Prescott was spotted at The Star without the walking boot he wore into the bye week, and the Dallas Cowboys are optimistic about a rising level of health around the team.

Wide receiver Michael Gallup, out since the opening night loss at Tampa with a calf injury, is set to return to practice on Wednesday, Cowboys vice president Stephen Jones said. Jones added that defensive end Demarcus Lawrence (foot) isn’t close to being back.

But Prescott is not expected to miss time with a calf injury that led to him wearing a protective boot home from the Cowboys’ win at New England in Week 6. He smiled and said he wanted the media to have something to talk about this week when asked on Monday how he was feeling.

Jones said Prescott was day-to-day but pointed to a high level of optimism about the quarterback playing against the Minnesota Vikings this week.

“It would have been a tough one for him to make it (this past Sunday), but that would be speculating,” Jones said during a press conference discussing the World Cup. “I don’t know. Obviously, we would have had the way we were treating him differently if we were trying to get him to play today versus next week. That does afford us a little leeway to work with him in terms of having until next Sunday.”

Prescott was lost for the season with a dislocated ankle in October 2020. He rehabbed for months, signed a long-term contract and reported to training camp in tremendous shape by his own measure.

During the Cowboys’ first padded practice, Prescott injured his shoulder and rested for most of the preseason.

He hasn’t missed time during the regular season, returning to start Week 1 at Tampa. Prescott is currently the second favorite for the 2021 NFL MVP Award — undefeated Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray is first — according to BetMGM.

–Field Level Media

Oklahoma State senior running back Jaylen Warren runs the ball as Iowa State sophomore defensive back Isheem Young applies defense in the first quarter on Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021, at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames.

20211023 Iowastatevsokst

Iowa St. upends No. 8 Oklahoma St., 24-21

Brock Purdy threw for 307 yards and two touchdowns, and the defense came up with a huge fourth-down stop in the closing seconds as Iowa State upended No. 8 Oklahoma State 24-21 in Ames, Iowa, on Saturday.

Breece Hall scored the go-ahead, 4-yard touchdown run with 5:29 to play for the Cyclones (5-2, 3-1 Big 12).

Will McDonald, the Big 12’s second-leading sack specialist coming into the day, recorded back-to-back sacks on second and third down to shut down a late Oklahoma State drive.

But the Cowboys (6-1, 3-1) came up with a stop of their own to get the ball back with 3:18 to play, setting up one last chance.

On fourth-and-2 from the Iowa State 42, Brennan Presley caught a short pass, but was tackled by Kym-Mani King and Isheem Young short of the first down marker, clinching the win for Iowa State.

Xavier Hutchinson had 12 catches for 125 yards and two touchdowns for the Cyclones.

The fourth quarter was a back-and-forth affair. Spencer Sanders threw a 25-yard touchdown pass to Tay Martin with 8:36 to play to give Oklahoma State a 21-17 lead, capping a 5-play, 58-yard drive.

Sanders finished 15 of 24 for 225 yards and three touchdowns.

The Cowboys got on the board first thanks to a short field, driving 48 yards in six plays to take a 7-0 lead on Sanders’ 5-yard touchdown pass to Presley with 5:55 to go in the first quarter.

Oklahoma State drove into Cyclones territory on its next drive with an opportunity to extend its lead, but Tanner Brown missed his 50-yard field goal attempt early in the second quarter.

Iowa State took advantage on its ensuing possession, driving 67 yards on 15 plays (eating up 9:35 of clock) to tie the game on Purdy’s 1-yard touchdown pass to Hutchinson.

Two possessions later, the Cowboys answered with a 42-yard touchdown bomb from Sanders to Presley, putting them back up 14-7 with 59 seconds to play in the half.

That was the score in the third quarter when Iowa State went on the move again, marching 87 yards in just five plays to tie the game 14-14 on Purdy’s second touchdown pass to Hutchinson, this one from 9 yards out.

Cyclones kicker Andrew Mevis broke a 14-14 tie with a 29-yard go-ahead field goal with 2:41 to play in the third quarter.

–Field Level Media

Oct 3, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys cornerback Trevon Diggs (7) celebrates with safety Damontae Kazee (18) after making an interception against the Carolina Panthers during the second half at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Cowboys S Damontae Kazee arrested for drunk driving

Dallas Cowboys free safety Damontae Kazee was arrested early Tuesday morning and charged with driving while intoxicated, according to multiple reports.

Kazee was arrested in The Colony, a suburb that is about 30 miles north of Dallas. The Colony is located just southwest of the team facility in Frisco.

According to the Dallas Morning News, Kazee was pulled over shortly after 3 a.m. CT due to a traffic violation. The officer felt Kazee had been drinking and the 28-year-old confirmed he had consumed alcohol.

Kazee failed a field sobriety test and was detained, according to the Dallas Morning News. He later posted $2,500 bond and was released from The Colony Municipal Jail at 12:34 p.m. CT.

The arrest came during the Cowboys’ bye week. It also came one day after coach Mike McCarthy discussed the importance of being smart during the break.

“Talked about the distractions and what we don’t want,” McCarthy told reporters on Monday. “We have an outstanding season — 5-1, where we are — make sure that everybody is taking care of themselves and spend as much time as they can with family and friends. They deserve it. They deserve this break, the length of it. I have a lot of confidence and a lot of trust in those guys.”

Kazee had 17 tackles, one interception and one forced fumble while starting all six games for the Cowboys. He signed with Dallas as a free agent in March.

Kazee spent his first four NFL seasons with the Atlanta Falcons. He had seven of his 11 career interceptions in 2018 and has played in 58 NFL games (40 starts).

Kazee was a college standout at San Diego State and had a school-record 17 interceptions for the Aztecs. He was named Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year in each of his final two seasons (2015, 2016).

–Field Level Media

Oct 17, 2021; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) passes the ball against the New England Patriots during the second half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Dak Prescott strains calf, will undergo MRI on Monday

The Dallas Cowboys’ game-winning play on Sunday apparently came with a bit of a scare.

As he was throwing the decisive touchdown pass to CeeDee Lamb, Dak Prescott strained his right calf. He was in a walking boot following the Cowboys’ 35-29 overtime win over the New England Patriots.

“It was a little pain,” Prescott said, “but for sure I would’ve been able to keep going. … Just came down funny. Didn’t like what I felt. It’s something that we’ll check out, but I could’ve kept playing if I had to. I’ll be fine.”

Prescott has thrown for 1,813 yards, 16 touchdowns and four interceptions this season for the first-place Cowboys. He passed for 445 yards and three touchdowns against New England as Dallas won its fifth straight game.

Prescott, who will undergo an MRI on Monday, played in only five games last season due to a fractured and dislocated left ankle.

“He was fine after the game,” Lamb said, via the Dallas Morning News. “I told him I love him. … I’m just going to keep reminding him that last year wasn’t like this.”

The Cowboys have a bye this week before facing the Minnesota Vikings on Halloween.

–Field Level Media

Oct 17, 2021; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; Dallas Cowboys wide receiver CeeDee Lamb (88) makes the catch and runs the ball for the game winning touchdown in overtime at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

CeeDee Lamb catches OT game-winner as Cowboys top Patriots

Dak Prescott found a wide-open CeeDee Lamb for a 35-yard touchdown pass with 3:52 left in overtime as the Dallas Cowboys held off the host New England Patriots 35-29 on Sunday for their fifth straight win.

Prescott finished 36 of 51 for 445 yards, three touchdowns and an interception for Dallas (5-1), which hasn’t lost since a 31-29 setback at Tampa Bay on opening night. Lamb hauled in nine catches for 149 yards and two TDs and Ezekiel Elliot rushed for 69 yards on 17 carries.

The Cowboys took over at their own 20-yard line after the Patriots won the coin toss and punted to begin overtime. Prescott orchestrated a seven-play, 80-yard drive and connected with Lamb for the winning score.

Mac Jones was 15 of 21 for 229 yards, two touchdowns and an interception for New England (2-4). Damien Harris rushed 18 times for 101 yards and a touchdown and Kendrick Bourne led the Patriots with 75 receiving yards.

Dallas took a 17-14 lead as Prescott found Lamb for a go-ahead one-yard touchdown on a goal line fade with 4:49 remaining in the third quarter. Greg Zuerlein’s 45-yard field goal at 13:13 of the fourth stretched the Cowboys’ lead to 20-14.

Rhamondre Stevenson’s first career TD on a one-yard rush restored the Patriots’ lead at 21-20 with 6:23 to go.

After Zuerlein missed a 51-yarder for Dallas with 2:42 to play, Trevon Diggs picked off Jones and returned it 42 yards for a score to put the Cowboys up 26-21 with 2:27 left. Diggs matched an NFL record with an interception in his sixth straight game to start the season.

On the next play from scrimmage, Bourne caught a pass from Jones and split two defenders before racing 75 yards into the end zone untouched. A two-point conversion pass to Jakobi Meyers put New England up 29-26 at the 2:11 mark.

Zuerlein made a 49-yard field goal with 20 seconds left to tie it at 29 and force overtime.

New England led 14-10 at halftime after forcing a pair of Cowboys turnovers in the end zone in the second quarter.

–Field Level Media

Oct 10, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys receiver Cee Dee Lamb (88) celebrates his second quarter touchdown with quarterback Dak Prescott (4) against the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Cowboys bringing offensive firepower to New England

Up-and-comer Mac Jones and the New England Patriots will complete their Texas two-step when they host Dak Prescott and the surging Dallas Cowboys on Sunday afternoon in Foxborough, Mass.

New England (2-3) pulled out a last-minute win on the road against a struggling Houston team last week as Nick Folk’s 21-yard field goal with 15 seconds remaining lifted the Patriots, 25-22.

Folk made all four of his field goals tries with a long of 52 yards — twice — en route to earning AFC specialist of the week honors. Jones was 23 of 30 for 231 yards passing with one touchdown and an interception for the Patriots, who rallied from a 22-9 third-quarter deficit.

Jones, a rookie, has displayed poise beyond his years in the pocket at times, but he still is averaging an interception per game with five picks on the season.

With nearly one third of the regular season in the books, the Patriots rank 20th in the league in passing yardage (239.8 yards per game) and are 26th in scoring (19.2 points per game).

“We just want to try to be as aggressive as we can be to try to score, but also be smart in those situations if there’s really nothing there,” Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels said of Jones’ approach. “(Mac is) learning from each one; he learns by series, honestly.”

New England’s defense — which ranks fifth in both yards (317.6) and points (18.4) allowed per game — will have its work cut out against Prescott and a Cowboys team that has won four straight.

Dallas (4-1) has scored 36 or more points in its last three victories while the resurgent Prescott has racked up 965 passing yards and 10 touchdowns opposite just two interceptions during the team’s winning streak.

“We’ve got to keep them off the board, try to get stops, try to make Dak read some defense and hold the ball a little longer so we can get to him,” said Patriots linebacker Matt Judon, whose 6 1/2 sacks are tied for second-most in the NFL.

Prescott threw for 302 yards, three touchdowns and an interception in the Cowboys’ 44-20 home rout of the New York Giants last week, on the one-year anniversary of his severe season-ending ankle injury that he suffered against the Giants.

“The system’s built around making the quarterback successful — and it starts there and it ends there,” Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said. “So the ball needs to be spread around, and Dak’s doing a tremendous job of that.”

Under Prescott’s direction, Dallas ranks second in the league in total yardage (439.6 per game) and points (34 per game). The Cowboys also boast the NFL’s second-best rushing attack (172.8 yards per game) thanks to the league’s third-leading rusher Ezekiel Elliott, who has 452 yards and five scores in five games.

“I am encouraged that our best football is ahead of us,” Elliott said. “Right now, we’re not peaking. It’s a long season, and we want to make sure we’re peaking at the right time.”

Elliott (ribs) was limited at practice Wednesday alongside defensive end Randy Gregory (knee) and safety Donovan Wilson (groin). Dallas cornerback Trevon Diggs (ankle) and defensive end Dorance Armstrong (ankle) did not participate.

Patriots running back Damien Harris (ribs) did not practice Wednesday along with guard Shaq Mason (abdomen) and cornerback Shaun Wade (concussion). Folk (left knee) and linebacker Kyle Van Noy (groin) highlighted a long list of limited participants.

–Field Level Media

Oct 2, 2021; Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA;  Oct 2, 2021; Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA; Oklahoma State Cowboys running back Jaylen Warren (7) drops the ball after scoring a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Baylor Bears at Boone Pickens Stadium. OSU won 24-14. Mandatory Credit: Brett Rojo-USA TODAY Sports

No. 12 Oklahoma State looks to pull rank on No. 25 Texas

Undefeated and 12th-ranked Oklahoma State will travel south to battle wounded and desperate No. 25 Texas on Saturday at Austin in a game that is crucial to both teams in the race for the Big 12 Conference title.

The Cowboys (5-0, 2-0) retained their spot at No. 12 after an open date last week. Oklahoma State’s most recent game was a 24-14 home victory over then-No. 21 Baylor on Oct. 2.

Oklahoma State’s Jaylen Warren rushed for 125 yards and two touchdowns on 36 carries, including a 4-yard scoring run with about two minutes left to cement the win.

Warren has at least 123 yards on the ground in each of the Cowboys’ past three games.

Spencer Sanders amassed 258 yards of total offense, passing for 182 yards and a touchdown and running for 76 more, but he also had three interceptions that kept Baylor in the game.

Oklahoma State has won its first five games for the first time since 2015. If it beats Texas, it will be a third consecutive win over a ranked team, something the Cowboys have never done.

Cowboys coach Mike Gundy understands the trip to Austin and playing the Longhorns will be a big challenge.

“I keep mentioning each week that as we keep going, the teams we play are better,” Gundy said. “Texas will be the most athletic team we’ve competed against so far. We all know that in this league, defensively, one of the most important things that we can accomplish is minimize the big plays. And I would prefer not to get in a shootout with them.”

Oklahoma State has won seven of the past 11 games against the Longhorns and is 5-1 in games in Austin since 2010.

“You can win if your talent level on paper is not the same, but you have to have enough good players to keep yourself in the game somehow, which we’ve done in the last 10 years,” Gundy explained. “Once we were able to win some of those games, we developed the confidence that everything is going to be OK. Let’s just go play.”

The Longhorns are on the ropes after a 55-48 loss to then-No. 6 Oklahoma last week at Dallas, dropping four spots from their previous ranking.

Texas (4-2, 2-1) led 28-7 after one quarter and still was up by 18 points late in the third quarter before the Sooners produced one of the biggest comebacks in the storied rivalry between the two teams.

“There’s not a lot of time in our sport, the way the turnaround is, for the ‘poor mes,’ the ‘woe is mes,’” Texas coach Steve Sarkisian said Monday. “No one is feeling sorry for us. I kind of like these challenges, quite frankly. This is when you learn a lot about yourselves.”

Oklahoma’s comeback spoiled impressive performances from Longhorns quarterback Casey Thompson (388 yards and five touchdowns passing), running back Bijan Robinson (137 yards and a touchdown) and receiver Xavier Worthy (261 yards and two TDs on nine catches).

Texas is in fourth place in the conference, behind Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Baylor. Another loss could doom the Longhorns’ chances at playing in the Big 12 Championship game – perhaps against the Sooners – at the end of the regular season.

“We have to recognize what our goals are,” Sarkisian said. “We’d all love to win a Big 12 championship. We’d all love the opportunity to play Oklahoma again, but none of that can occur if we don’t handle business Saturday.”

This will be the first time both teams are ranked when playing each other since 2013.

–Field Level Media

Oct 10, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott (21) carries teh ball as New York Giants cornerback James Bradberry (24) defends in the third quarter at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Cowboys cruise past injury-riddled Giants, 44-20

Dak Prescott threw for 302 yards and three touchdowns Sunday as the Dallas Cowboys overcame a slew of first half mistakes to knock off the shorthanded New York Giants 44-20 in Arlington, Texas.

Prescott completed 22 of 32 passes, making up for a sloppy first half in which he tossed an interception and lost a fumble. Ezekiel Elliott added 110 yards and a late touchdown on 21 rushes as Dallas (4-1) assumed a two-game lead on Philadelphia and Washington in the NFC East.

New York hung with the Cowboys for just over a half before its injury-riddled offense simply couldn’t keep pace. The Giants (1-4) lost running back Saquon Barkley (ankle), quarterback Daniel Jones (concussion) and receiver Kenny Golladay in the first half.

Rookie receiver Kadarius Toney tried to keep New York in contention with a career-high 10 catches for 189 yards before being ejected in the fourth quarter for throwing a punch. Backup quarterback Mike Glennon completed 16 of 25 passes for 196 yards and a late touchdown to Devontae Booker, but also tossed two interceptions, including a garbage time pick-six to Anthony Brown.

The Cowboys started the scoring with Greg Zuerlein’s 31-yard field goal at the 6:20 mark of the first quarter. They made it 10-0 when Prescott found CeeDee Lamb for a 49-yard touchdown pass with 12:06 left in the first half.

The Giants tied it with Graham Gano’s 51-yard field goal and a 1-yard touchdown run from Devontae Booker, but Dallas took the lead for good on Prescott’s 24-yard scoring strike to Amari Cooper 36 seconds before halftime.

After Gano bombed another 51-yard field goal on New York’s first possession of the second half, the Cowboys took over. Prescott flipped a 4-yard touchdown pass to Elliott and Zuerlein hit a 38-yard field goal to make it 27-13 after three quarters.

Elliott ended the competitive phase of the game with a 13-yard touchdown run with 7:34 left. After Booker’s second score, Zuerlein tacked on a 31-yard field goal with 1:53 remaining.

–Field Level Media

Oct 3, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys  quarterback Dak Prescott (4) celebrates a touchdown with wide receiver Cedrick Wilson (1) against the Carolina Panthers at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Looking like contenders, Cowboys host Giants in NFC East clash

Perhaps a year later than expected, the Dallas Cowboys have the look of a true contender in the NFC.

Three straight wins have propelled them to the top of an East Division that doesn’t look a whole lot better than last year, when every team finished with a losing record. However, two of those came against apparent playoff contenders in the Los Angeles Chargers and Carolina Panthers.

Dallas (3-1) tries to make it four in a row Sunday when it hosts the New York Giants in a division clash. It owns a one-game lead on Washington and is two up on New York and Philadelphia.

It was the two games with the Giants last season that told the tale of a disappointing 6-10 campaign for Dallas. It won the first matchup at home but lost quarterback Dak Prescott for the season with an ugly fractured ankle that day, making a high-powered offense much more ordinary.

The second game went the Giants’ way in Week 17, knocking the Cowboys out for good and resulting in Washington winning the division with a win at Philadelphia. It ignited questions as to whether coach Mike McCarthy was truly the solution on the sideline.

These days, McCarthy appears to have Dallas on the right track, new defensive coordinator Dan Quinn has improved a leaky unit and Prescott hasn’t missed a beat in his return. And with the re-emergence of running back Ezekiel Elliott, who carved up Carolina for 143 yards last week, the Cowboys don’t appear to have many holes.

Elliott’s numbers were modest through three games. But owner Jerry Jones was convinced that Elliott was ready to break out, citing the offseason work he’d put in that dropped 10 pounds off his frame.

“There’s no question that what you put in in spring, what you put in in training camp, that’s what you get out during the season,” Jones said. “He put it in during the offseason and it’s paying dividends for him.”

As for New York (1-3), it earned its first dividend of the season last weekend in New Orleans, where Daniel Jones threw for a career-high 402 yards and Saquon Barkley scored the winning touchdown in a 27-21 overtime decision.

Jones has played much more efficiently so far. A turnover machine at times in his first two years, Jones has tossed only one interception in 144 passes and lost just one fumble after coughing up 17 fumbles in his first 27 games.

“We haven’t won enough games — that’s no secret — the first two years and obviously this season didn’t start how we wanted it to or expected it to,” he said. “Those are storms we’ve all had to weather and we’ve got to continue to progress, continue to improve.”

The Giants certainly look like a different team offensively from the hit-or-miss unit of the last two years. Barkley collected 126 scrimmage yards in New Orleans, while free agent receiver Kenny Golladay enjoyed his best game with the team, grabbing six passes for 116 yards.

To make it two straight wins, New York might need more big plays from a defense that ranks in the league’s bottom half in sacks (tied for 30th) and interceptions (tied for 18th).

–Field Level Media

Oct 3, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys linebacker Jaylon Smith (9) against the Carolina Panthers at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Cowboys release LB Jaylon Smith

The Dallas Cowboys released linebacker Jaylon Smith on Tuesday, multiple media outlets reported.

Smith, 26, signed a five-year, $64 million extension before the start of the 2019 season and was under contract through 2024.

He started two of the 3-1 Cowboys’ four games this season and totaled 18 tackles. With Dallas opting for Keanu Neal and rookie Micah Parsons at linebacker in the season opener, Smith’s streak of 50 consecutive starts (including playoff games) ended.

Smith was the Cowboys’ second-round pick in the 2016 NFL draft and quickly worked his way into a starting role. He has 516 tackles, nine sacks, six forced fumbles, five fumble recoveries and two interceptions in 68 career games (56 starts).

The Cowboys owe Smith $7.2 million for the 2021 season, according to multiple media outlets, but will save against the cap in future seasons.

–Field Level Media