The Dallas Cowboys enter their Week 4 matchup against the San Francisco 49ers looking to push their record to 3-1. It would be an amazing feat considering the Cowboys lost starting quarterback Tony Romo in Week 3 of the 2016 NFL Preseason due to a broken bone in his back. According to Sports Illustrated, Dallas currently expects Romo to return in Week 8 against the Philadelphia Eagles following a Week 7 bye.
— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) September 28, 2016
Everything from Cowboys’ camp thus far has indicated that Romo will start when healthy. I’m not sure that makes the most sense. During Week 1 of the 2016 NFL Season, Prescott nearly led Dallas to a win over the New York Giants, falling just short, 20-19. Dak completed 25-0f-45 passes for 227 yards and rushed twice for 12 yards against the Giants’ revamped defense. It wasn’t a flashy performance, but Prescott didn’t turn the ball over once.
In Week 2, Prescott and the Cowboys bounced back to get a crucial 27-23 victory over the Washington Redskins on the road. Dak went 22-of-30 for 292 yards through the air and added a six-yard rushing touchdown. Once again, the Cowboys’ quarterback didn’t turn the ball over once as he finished with an 88.2 QBR and 103.8 QB rating.
Last week against the Chicago Bears, Prescott was even more impressive as he completed 19-of-24 passes for 248 yards and tossed his first career touchdown pass to Dez Bryant. Dak also added four rushes for 36 yards on the ground and scored a touchdown on his way to a 99.1 QBR and 123.6 QB rating.
That puts Dak Prescott’s three-week totals at 66-of-99 which is good for a 66.7 completion percentage for 767 yards, three total touchdowns and a 93.3 quarterback rating. He’s looked calm, collected and poised running the Cowboys’ offense through three weeks and the more playing time and on the job training he gets, the better for the future of the Dallas Cowboys.
The only possible argument for giving Tony Romo his job back in Week 8 would be if the Dallas Cowboys felt like their chances of winning the Super Bowl increased with No. 9 under center. While Romo may offer a slightly higher upside in the passing game, he also takes more risks which leads to more turnovers. It makes more sense to start Prescott, as long as he’s healthy and playing well, and leaning heavily on Ezekiel Elliott and the run game.
— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) October 2, 2016
Let’s say the Cowboys beat the 49ers later today, defeat the Cincinnati Bengals in Arlington next week and lose to the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field in Week 6. That’s certainly a possible scenario with the way the Cowboys and Prescott have played so far this season and would put Dallas at 4-2 entering the bye week. How does Jerry Jones possibly justify replacing Dak with Romo at that point?
Over the last two seasons, Romo has only been able to make it through one complete game. He broke his left collarbone against the Eagles in Week 2 of the 2015 NFL Season and then returned against the Carolina Panthers on Thanksgiving Day. It didn’t take long for Romo to break that collarbone for the second time against the Panthers which ended his season.
The Cowboys and Romo were looking forward to his return to begin the 2016 season, but Tony couldn’t even make it out of the third preseason game without suffering another serious injury. Starting Dak Prescott for the rest of this season would not only be the best option for the present, but it would also improve the long-term prospects of the Dallas Cowboys.
[Featured Image by Tom Pennington/Getty Images]