The quarterback for the Cowboys is generating an MVP-caliber performance thanks to the things he has gained over the course of the summer. In addition, additional information regarding the concussion procedure for Dorian Thompson-Robinson, Rashee Rice’s breakout performance, Mac Jones’s benching, and Aaron Rodgers’ comeback.
During the course of the summer, there was a period of time where Dak Prescott ended up throwing a number of interceptions during training camp. My visit to Cowboys camp in Southern California occurred in the midst of that, and it provided me with something to discuss with coach Mike McCarthy when we sat down for a couple of hours in his suite at the team’s hotel/makeshift facility. Additionally, it provided me with something to talk about with him.
McCarthy supported Prescott by stating that there was a technique to what was happening in late July and August, which is something that you would expect to happen.
Following the departure of Kellen Moore to the Chargers, the Cowboys desired to improve their off-schedule performance in order to accommodate McCarthy’s increased amount of authority over the offense. McCarthy was kind enough to explain to me that they wanted to practice scramble situations in order to improve Prescott’s and everyone else’s performance in instances where they were not following the instructions that a play would provide them.
It is functioning properly.
A member of the Cowboys staff that I texted on Friday morning, after Dallas had defeated the Seahawks in a shootout by a score of 38–35 on Thursday night, gushed about Prescott’s pocket awareness and comfort in running the offense off-rhythm and off-schedule. “He is playing with an abundance of self-assurance,” the staff member texted. During quarterback training, Mike McCarthy and Schotty Schottenheimer really emphasize those things on a regular basis. Additionally, Michael McCarthy and the receivers are on the same page regarding the plays that are being discussed.
One of these plays occurred at the beginning of the fourth quarter, when Dallas was facing a first-and-10 situation with the Seattle 34 yard line. The Seahawks’ edge rusher Darrell Taylor was able to clear right tackle Terence Steele and end up in the lap of Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott. The majority of quarterbacks would have been lost. The cool part for the coaches who have worked with Prescott and his receivers occurred when he wrestled out of Taylor’s hold. Prescott did not succeed in doing so.
Jalen Tolbert noticed it, broke off his route, and went parallel to Prescott, and Prescott put the ball between the one and the eight on his jersey for a gain of 17 yards. Prescott’s eyes remained downfield while he ran down the line of scrimmage at the same time. That particular possession resulted in a field goal being kicked by the Cowboys. But those who were aware of the play itself understood that it represented a great deal more than that, with all of the factors that went into the blunders he made in practice having an effect.
The statistics are evidence that this is the case. Although he is currently ranked second in the NFL in terms of passer rating (108.3), he is currently ranked third in terms of passing yards (3,266) and first in terms of touchdown passes (26). Oh, and just so you know, he has only thrown six picks, which is a very solid indication that the things he learned over the summer have resulted in positive outcomes.
When it comes to how you process what coaches and players are doing during training camp, this is probably something that a lot of other people ought to take something away from. • As a result of the fact that Browns quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson will not be available for Sunday, the team’s current situation in the position is a cold truth.
When it comes to the concussion protocol, Thompson-Robinson’s situation is quite straightforward and understandable. He did not make a clear. However, the outcome of it may be described as a grayish color. The plan that was devised by the coaches a few of weeks ago to give the youngster some runway to see if he might increase the ceiling for the Deshaun Watson–less squad at the position would be turned upside down if Joe Flacco were to perform poorly. This is because Thompson-Robinson has been ruled out of the game.
In that scenario, with the club potentially having a record of 8–4 and trying to maintain its position in the playoffs, I believe that Kevin Stefanski and his coaching staff would owe it to players like Myles Garrett, Denzel Ward, Amari Cooper, and Joel Bitonio to continue playing the way they have been playing with the intention of providing them with the best possible opportunity to participate in the dance.
It’s possible that this wouldn’t be the case if we were in September, but we are currently in December.
In addition, it is unfortunate that a man could suffer a head injury and lose his opportunity to play. On the other hand, in the words of each and every football coach on the face of the earth, it is just what it is.
• I checked in with one AFC executive who came up on the college-scouting side about how all the movement has affected his ability to do his job. Players are constantly switching teams and systems, and the picture for NFL teams is getting more complicated in how they evaluate prospects. This week’s transfer portal craziness was a good opportunity for me to talk to this executive.
Because of the amount of time he needs to spend merely staying up to date with which students have switched schools and all of the numerous places particular individuals have gone, the executive stated that his work is definitely made more difficult when he is visiting schools during the summer.
But after they get over that aspect, it can actually assist shape the character assessment that each team does on each player. This is something that they do anyhow.
An executive says, “If a guy transfers from [an FCS school], you get a clearer picture.” [You] get a better picture. Because the individual is new to a certain scout’s area, it is difficult to learn about the kid’s history. Therefore, it is necessary for the guys in your area to communicate with one another during this time. But in the past, we have dealt with the issue of transfers. It is not a first. It’s just that there are more of them… Now, if a child went to three different schools, you may wonder what the cause was. What is it about the opportunity, or is it a weakness in your character?
“But, yeah, if you’re going from one school to a bigger school, to compete on a bigger stage, that’s a lot different than going to a third school because you can’t acclimate anywhere,” the speaker said. “But, yeah, if you’re going to a bigger school…”
An under-the-radar critical name to the AFC title chase: Rashee Rice. The Chiefs’ second-round pick has had five catches in eight of 11 games, four in nine of 11 games and last week exploded for 10 catches, 107 yards and a touchdown against the Raiders.
The Chiefs’ decision to stand pat at receiver traces back to DeAndre Hopkins’s contract ask changing in the spring. At that point, Kansas City pivoted and spent the money it would’ve used on Hopkins on left tackle Donovan Smith, and then took Rice with the 55th pick. The idea, at that point, was that Rice and Skyy Moore (who the Chiefs envisioned playing an Albert Wilson–type role in the offense) would improve with time and be factors in January.
It hasn’t worked out quite as planned yet with Moore, but Rice’s consistency, and improvement, are giving the team optimism that he can be the complement to Travis Kelce in the passing game the Chiefs have needed. Coordinator Matt Nagy said this week that Rice has become less robotic in how he’s playing, which is a nice sign of growth for any rookie, and it indicates what I’ve heard—that the Chiefs really did see last Sunday coming for a while.
And what they see is a guy who can grow into the sort of receiver Deebo Samuel is in the size, strength and violence he runs with after the catch with a little less speed.