Dak Prescott Is Taking The Next Step In Kellen Moore's System

The Cowboys quarterback is thriving in Dallas' new offense

KA Sports Photos, Flickr

  • Prescott has thrown seven touchdowns in his first two games in new offensive coordinator Kellen Moore’s system

  • The emergence of Michael Gallup and the signings of Randall Cobb and Jason Witten have given Prescott more options.

Prescott in 2018

During Prescott’s third season with the Cowboys, the former Mississippi State quarterback really began to show his promise once Dallas acquired star wide receiver Amari Cooper in a trade with the Oakland Raiders.

Prescott duplicated his touchdown passing mark of 22 from the 2017 season, but decreased his number of interceptions from 13 to eight. Meanwhile, he completed nearly 68 percent of his passes during the regular season, which ranked higher than Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger and Russell Wilson.

The 26-year-old benefited greatly from the arrival of Cooper, who racked up 725 yards and six touchdowns after arriving in Dallas last season. With a legitimate No. 1 pass-catching threat to go along with Ezekiel Elliott and the team’s rushing attack, Prescott looked significantly more comfortable throwing the ball deep downfield. 

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Despite a rough start to the campaign, which had seen Dallas fall to 3-5 through eight games, Prescott and the Cowboys rebounded admirably by rattling off wins in seven of their final eight games, including victories over the Philadelphia Eagles, Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints.

Not only did Dallas go on to win the NFC East, but the Cowboys entered the playoffs as one of the favorites to come out of the NFC after their strong second half of the season. 

The Cowboys disposed of the Seattle Seahawks in the Wild Card Round before falling on the road to the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC Divisional Round, and Prescott certainly saw his numbers dip in the postseason. Prescott averaged 246 passing yards over the two playoff games. However, he accounted for four touchdowns (two passing, two rushing) in the playoffs.

Through Week 2

A favorable schedule has the Cowboys looking like a serious threat so far in 2019, after Jason Garrett’s team started 2-0 with wins over the New York Giants and the Washington Redskins in their opening two games.

The Cowboys certainly appear to be among the NFL’s best teams thus far, boasting a balanced offensive attack led by Prescott, who has already thrown for seven touchdowns this campaign. 

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A lot of Dallas’ success has to be attributed to offensive coordinator Kellen Moore, who previously served as a backup quarterback for the Cowboys for a number of years. Between Moore’s ability to call play action plays on early downs, as well as putting Prescott in positions where he can move around in the pocket while still keeping his eyes downfield, the Cowboys offense is clicking on all cylinders. 

The stellar play of the offensive line has certainly aided Prescott’s ability as well, after Dallas gave up 56 sacks a season ago, the second-most in the NFL. However, the biggest asset for Prescott so far is the depth that Dallas finally has in the passing attack. Bringing in Cooper via trade in 2018 was huge for Prescott’s development, but the Cowboys needed more options to help spread the ball around.

The progression of Michael Gallup and additions of Randall Cobb and Jason Witten gives the Cowboys offense a host of weapons at the disposal of Prescott. Through two games, Prescott has already thrown touchdown passes to five different receivers, which has made it a nightmare for opposing defenses to handle. 

Although Gallup could miss up to a month with a knee injury, the Cowboys are in a prime position to continue to find success early in the season given their upcoming schedule and the play of Prescott and the rest of the offense.

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Looking Forward

Already having picked up two wins in the division, Dallas should be confident early on given their play on the field, as well as the teams they face in the coming weeks.

The Giants and Redskins likely won’t be playing for much in 2019, and the same can be said about the Miami Dolphins, who are up next for the Cowboys in Week 3. Prescott and Co. have the chance to face a Dolphins team that has allowed 102 points over their first two games against the Baltimore Ravens and New England Patriots.

Meanwhile, the Cowboys won’t have to worry about the injured Drew Brees when they travel to New Orleans in Week 4, giving Dallas a legitimate chance at starting the season 4-0 before they host Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers the following week at AT&T Stadium. 

America’s Team won’t necessarily have a cake walk though once they get into the crux of their schedule after Week 8, with encounters against the Minnesota Vikings, Patriots, Rams and Philadelphia Eagles all on the calendar. While Dallas does face a number of difficult opponents during the second half of the season, the team can certainly rely on its dominance in the NFC East since Prescott took over as quarterback in 2016. 

Since that time, the Cowboys are 15-5 in divisional games, including their first two wins in 2019 against the Giants and Redskins. With that sort of record, the Cowboys have a much easier path to the playoffs with the talent and depth that their squad boasts.

Note: The advice above is the writer’s opinion only and does not represent the stance or interest of BetQL in any way.