August 10, 2019; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) and owner Jerry Jones (right) before the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Jerry Jones: Dak has leverage in talks with Cowboys

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones acknowledged Tuesday that quarterback Dak Prescott is in the driver’s seat when it comes to contract negotiations.

The Cowboys stumbled to a 6-10 record without Prescott, who suffered a season-ending compound fracture and dislocation of his right ankle in October.

“I don’t know how you could have any more leverage,” Jones said on 105.3 The Fan in Dallas.

Prescott and the Cowboys couldn’t reach agreement on a long-term contract before the 2020 season, and the quarterback was set to play on the $31.4 million franchise tag.

With the regular season now over, the Cowboys and Prescott can resume contract negotiations. When talks concluded last June without a deal, the Cowboys were discussing a contract in the range of $35 million a year with a hefty guarantee.

Prescott, 27, was leading the NFL with 1,856 passing yards when he sustained the injury in Week 5. The Cowboys got off to a 2-3 record under Prescott and finished limped to the finish behind starters Andy Dalton, Ben DiNucci and Garrett Gilbert.

Jones said Tuesday that Prescott is the leader the Cowboys need while acknowledging a reduction in the salary cap in 2021 — a product of the coronavirus pandemic — will make things trickier.

“He has great ability, in my mind, to win games. He’s talented. He certainly has the experiences and he has all the things, which has been substantiated by what we’ve offered Dak,” Jones said. “You wouldn’t offer Dak what we offered in the past if you’d not thought he was very special. The issue is how do you come together? And that’s no stranger to me. I’ve been doing it all my life, putting things together. We’ve got to get it together.”

In 69 starts over five seasons in Dallas, Prescott has a 42-27 record. He’s completed 66 percent of his passes for 17,634 yards with 106 touchdowns and 40 interceptions.

–Field Level Media

Oct 25, 2020; Landover, Maryland, USA; Washington Football Team linebacker Jon Bostic (53) tackles Dallas Cowboys quarterback Andy Dalton (14) during the second half at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

QB Dalton returns to practice for Cowboys

The Dallas Cowboys’ quarterback carousel could turn again this weekend, as backup quarterback Andy Dalton returned to practice Monday.

Signed in May to back up starter Dak Prescott, Dalton has missed two games since sustaining a concussion on a hit by Washington linebacker Jon Bostic on Oct. 25. Placed in the league’s concussion protocol that day, Dalton also landed on Dallas’ reserve/COVID-19 list early this month.

Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said Monday that Dalton is “cleared for practice and had a good day today. We had a mock game-type practice for us, and he was a full participant.”

Dalton came in during the Cowboys’ Oct. 11 game against the New York Giants after Prescott went down with a gruesome, season-ending ankle injury. Dallas (2-7) won that game on a field goal in the last minute.

With Dalton hurt two games later, third- and fourth-stringers Ben DiNucci and Garrett Gilbert have started for Dallas, which has lost four straight and is coming off a bye week.

Dalton has thrown for 452 yards this season with one touchdown and three interceptions while completing 61.2 percent of his passes. The 33-year-old veteran spent his first nine seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, throwing for 31,594 yards and 204 touchdowns with 118 interceptions. He was a three-time Pro Bowl selection during his time in Cincinnati.

The Cowboys travel to face the Minnesota Vikings (3-5) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Oct 11, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) leaves the field with an injury in the third quarter against the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Report: No infection for Prescott post-surgery

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott is progressing well from surgery to repair a compound fracture and ankle dislocation in his right leg, ESPN reported Sunday.

Prescott underwent the procedure a week ago after suffering the gruesome injury in the third quarter of the Cowboys’ win against the New York Giants, and doctors were concerned an infection could set in.

“So far, so good,” a source told ESPN.

Washington quarterback Alex Smith suffered a compound fracture in his right leg, but a potentially life-threatening infection delayed his recovery. He required 17 surgeries in all and returned to the field for the first time since the injury last weekend.

Prescott is expected to need as long as six months for rehabilitation. The 27-year-old quarterback visited the team facility on Thursday for the first time since the injury and also posted a message to social media.

“I’m ready to start this road to come back,” Prescott said in a video. “This little adversity is going to be just another chapter in the book. I’m excited to move forward and write it.”

The Cowboys are optimistic that Prescott will make a full recovery. He was leading the NFL with 1,856 passing yards.

Prescott was playing on a one-year franchise tag worth $31.4 million this season. The Cowboys reportedly offered him a five-year, $175 million deal in the offseason that was declined before contract talks broke down.

Veteran Andy Dalton will be the starting quarterback for Sunday’s game against Arizona.

–Field Level Media

Oct 11, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) is tackled and injured by New York Giants cornerback Logan Ryan (23) in the third quarter at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Prescott surgery complete, QB to be released Monday

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott will be released from the hospital on Monday following surgery for a compound fracture and dislocation of his right ankle on Sunday night.

The Cowboys updated Prescott’s status early Monday and team owner Jerry Jones is expected to speak to the media on Monday afternoon following head coach Mike McCarthy’s press conference.

“Dak Prescott’s surgery was successfully completed last night, and he is expected to be released from the hospital today,” the team said.

The gruesome injury is season-ending for Prescott and thrusts backup Andy Dalton into the starting quarterback role for the Cowboys, who used a late field goal to survive the New York Giants on Sunday.

It also presents a new layer to the complicated contract matter between Prescott and the Cowboys. Prescott was playing the 2020 season on the one-year franchise tag. He can become an unrestricted free agent in March 2021.

“I feel terrible for him,” Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said after the 37-34 victory over the Giants. “He was having a tremendous year. He’s made such an impression on me. He’s the leader of this team. … This will just be another chapter in a great story. He’s a fine young man.”

Prescott sustained the injury in the third quarter after gaining 9 yards on a called quarterback draw and getting tackled by New York safety Logan Ryan.

He immediately clutched his right lower leg. After a cast was placed on the leg, Prescott appeared to be crying as he was carted off the field at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Among the people who came near Prescott while he was being attended to on the turf was New York Giants offensive coordinator Jason Garrett, the former coach of the Cowboys.

–Field Level Media

Oct 11, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) is comforted by his teammates after an injury in the third quarter against the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas QB Prescott carted off with leg injury

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott will reportedly have ankle surgery on Sunday night after suffering a gruesome injury against the New York Giants.

Prescott sustained the injury in the third quarter after gaining 9 yards on a called quarterback draw and getting tackled by New York safety Logan Ryan.

He immediately clutched his right lower leg. After a cast was placed on the leg, Prescott appeared to be crying as he was carted off the field at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

While the game was in the fourth quarter, ESPN reported Prescott was taken to a local hospital for evaluation and was scheduled to have surgery later Sunday.

Dallas led 24-23 at the time of the injury. Veteran Andy Dalton replaced Prescott.

Prescott completed 14 of 21 passes for 166 yards with one interception. He also caught an 11-yard touchdown pass.

The 27-year-old Prescott entered the game leading the NFL in completions (137), attempts (201) and passing yards (1,690).

–Field Level Media

2015 College Football Preview: Mississippi State Bulldogs

Last season, the Mississippi State Bulldogs were a captivating team to watch. Week after week, they seemed to pull off impressive win after impressive win until, eventually, they became the #1 ranked team in the nation. With a perfect 9-0 record, the inevitable came, and they had to face Alabama at Tuscaloosa. Mississippi State lost 20-25 in a close defeat. The Bulldogs were never the same after ‘Bama and they would go on to lose at Ole Miss two weeks later, ruining their chances of being in the College Football Playoff. It didn’t get any better as they would then lose to Georgia Tech in the Orange Bowl. Let’s see how the season is looking for the Bulldogs in 2015.
2015 Schedule:

  1. Sept. 5th—at Southern Mississippi
  2. Sept. 12th—LSU
  3. Sept. 19th—Northwestern State
  4. Sept. 26th—at Auburn
  5. Oct. 3rd—at Texas A&M
  6. Oct. 10th—Troy
  7. Oct. 17th—Louisiana Tech
  8. Oct. 24th—Kentucky
  9. BYE
  10. Nov. 5th—at Missouri (Thursday Night)
  11. Nov. 14th—Alabama
  12. Nov. 21st—at Arkansas
  13. Nov. 28th—Ole Miss

Offense:
Last season, the Bulldogs had a great rushing attack in RB Josh Robinson. Sadly, he left early for the NFL, but he did not leave MSSU high and dry. The duo of juniors Brandon Holloway and Ashton Shumpert will look to continue to keep their strong rushing game together. Surprisingly, the QB Dak Prescott was one of the top rushers for the offense last season. His productivity dropped near the end of the season due to an ankle injury. He will look to be a consistent runner this season as well and stay healthy. The passing game is also very strong for the Bulldogs, and it strives because of the success of such a strong run game. Dak Prescott is a great passer for this team and has really improved over the years. He is surrounded by a very talented receiving staff this season. Junior WR De’Runnya Wilson leads the receivers; he is coming back from a knee injury last season and will look to be stronger than ever. Junior receiver Fred Ross will be a great #2 receiver and will help make a tough duo for opposing teams to stop. The offensive line for the Bulldogs is not looking good for this season. They lost their three starting offensive linemen from last season and their top three options for the starting spot at center.
Defense:
The rushing defense for the Bulldogs ranked 44th in the nation by averaging 151.5 rushing yards per game. The defense will be without two of their stars this year, DE Preston Smith and LB Benardrick McKinney. Both were solid contributors to the defense and will be sorely missed. The anchor for the LB core will be junior Beniquez Brown. He will have to be the leader of a very young LB core this season. The pass rush will miss Preston Smith and his 9 sacks a great deal this season. Left to fill the void will be Ryan Brown and A.J. Jefferson. Both are not sack masters by any means, but they will hope to try and cause some pressure on the opposing QB. The pass defense struggled last season giving up 272.8 yards per game, which ranked 117th in the NCAA. This year the secondary still looks a little bleak but there is more experience on the squad which should help out some.
2015 Season Outlook:
Last year, the Bulldogs had a roller coaster ride, struggling against teams they shouldn’t have struggled against. They had some tough road games against Alabama, LSU, Kentucky, and Ole Miss. This year, they should not have as tough of a schedule, this year the Bulldogs face LSU, Bama, and Ole Miss at home this year. While all three will be tough SEC battles, Mississippi State will have the home field advantage. The only truly tough road games they will have to go on will be Auburn and Texas A&M at Kyle Field. Due to a weaker defense, and a QB who went on a decline towards the end of last season, I am questioning whether the Bulldogs can pull off another great season like last year. I can see another strong season from MSSU, but they will not be headed to the College Football Playoff this year.
2016 NFL Draft Prospects:
#15 QB, Dak Prescott, Senior—6’2”, 230 lbs
#81 WR, De’Runnya Wilson, Junior—6’5”, 225 lbs
#45 LB, Zach Johnson, Senior—6’2”, 210 lbs
Austin Morris is the creator of The Scouting Lab. He is a graduate of National Football Post’s Introduction to Scouting and Scouting Boot Camp. He can be reached at amorris3585@scc.stanly.edu