For years, the refrain for the Dallas Cowboys has been the same: If Tony Romo is healthy, they’re playoff contenders. Once one of his ever-imperiled bones snaps, however, they collapse. It was perhaps the single biggest factor in their record dropping from 12-4 in 2014 to 4-12 last year. Whether it’s his collarbone or his spine, Romo’s tenuous health has always been the biggest concern in Dallas, but those days might finally be over with the emergence of Dak Prescott.
Through five games, Prescott has yet to throw an interception, the longest streak to start a career by any rookie ever. On Sunday, he and fellow rookie Ezekiel Elliott — as a high draft pick, a byproduct of the Cowboys’ lost 2015 season — tore up what was supposed to be a pretty good Cincinnati Bengals defense to put Dallas at 4-1, first place in the NFC East. Prescott will still sit for Romo whenever the latter is ready, but the future past the 36-year-old incumbent is bright indeed.
Prescott has mainly found success by sticking to underneath and crossing routes, peppering the diminutive Cole Beasley with targets all season. For someone whose accuracy was questioned coming out of college, it’s been a pleasant surprise to see Prescott playing within himself. Though his yardage totals haven’t been all that impressive, there’s no bad way to have complete 18 of 24 passes, with a touchdown pass and this touchdown run: