For a team to have success, their quarterback must stay healthy. Dak Prescott has proven he can do so for the Dallas Cowboys.
There’s an old saying that’s popular around the NFL that goes something along the lines of ‘availability is the most important ability’ when it comes to a player. This is especially true for the quarterback position. For the Dallas Cowboys, quarterback Dak Prescott has been a model of both consistency and, perhaps more importantly, durability.
In four seasons as the Cowboys starting quarterback, Dak Prescott has not missed a single game. In fact, he hadn’t even missed a practice in his entire career before the final week of last season.
When discussing Dak Prescott’s future in Dallas and how much he’s worth, the first place everyone goes to is his stats. There’s no doubt he’s put up some impressive numbers in his first four seasons as a starter but those stats are only made possible by the simple fact that he has managed to stay healthy.
The quarterback is, without a doubt, the most important player on the football field. They’ve got to be out there for your team to succeed, or for you to at least have hope for the playoffs.
Being good at quarterback is one thing but that alone is not enough. As the Washington Post pointed out, nine of the 12 playoff quarterbacks played in 15 of the 16 regular season games, the exceptions being Drew Brees, Ryan Tannehill and Patrick Mahomes. That consistency, dependability and reliability helps maintain a sense of rhythm on offense.
While there have been examples of backup quarterbacks who have come in and led their team to success — Nick Foles and Teddy Bridgewater come to mind — they are more the exception then they are the rule. Just look at the Pittsburgh Steelers who entered 2019 with high hopes only to see their Super Bowl aspirations flushed away when Ben Roethlisberger went down in Week 2.
Carson Wentz, Cam Newton, Andrew Luck, Sam Bradford, Robert Griffin III, the list of immensely talented quarterbacks who have struggled with injury in their career is a long one. A quarterback can have all the skill in the world but if they can’t stay healthy and on the field, then it doesn’t really matter much.
Health is one of Dak Prescott’s most overlooked and underappreciated traits. At 6 feet 2 inches tall and 226 pounds, he’s got the size to take the punishment that comes with being a quarterback in the NFL. While he was nagged by injuries late in the season last year, he played through them and still managed to put up career numbers in passing yards and touchdowns.
When looking at Dak Prescott and determining if he’s the guy they want to be their starting quarterback for the foreseeable future, the Dallas Cowboys must take into account his durability and reliability. The potential is there if Mike McCarthy can iron out some of his mechanical flaws. And we know we can count on him to be there, under center, week in and week out.