Dallas Cowboys: Comparing Dak Prescott’s numbers to Tony Romo

Tony Romo, Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Tony Romo, Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

This will be the fourth season without Tony Romo under the gun for the Dallas Cowboys. With Dak Prescott under center, did Big D miss a beat?

The quarterback position of the Dallas Cowboys swings a lot of emotion. Currently, Dak Prescott is still at the negotiation stage with his employer. Despite starting every single game since 2016, going 40-24 in the regular season, the former fourth-rounder does not have a new deal.

The 2016 season was only four years ago, but it feels like 10 NFL seasons ago. Of course, the 2016 year is a memorable one for the Dallas Cowboys.

It was the season where the Cowboys welcomed in a pair of rookie standouts in running back Ezekiel Elliott and Dak Prescott. The Cowboys finished the year with a 13-3 regular-season record and Prescott earned the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award.

The year 2016 also marked the end of the Tony Romo era. The quarterback did not start in any game that season, finishing his final season with four pass attempts, 29 passing yards, and one touchdown. Romo retired the following season; he was with the Cowboys club since 2004.

People are quick to anoint the next big star. But I’ve always felt that was unfair. I think you have to give a player two to three complete seasons before you bring out the anointing oil. We’ve all seen stellar rookies jump out the gate before, but it truly takes a special crop of talent to rise above others.

Dak Prescott has completed four tours as the quarterback of America’s Team. There are some experts and fans who favor Prescott over Romo. And, of course, others feel the opposite. So, how do the two quarterbacks compare?

The numbers may surprise Dallas Cowboys fans. The regular-season numbers, please?

For his career, Tony Romo earned a completion percentage of 65.3, 248 touchdowns (TD% 5.7) to 117 interceptions (INT% 2.7), averaging 219.1 yards per game, and a final quarterback rating of 97.1. Romo was sacked 248 times, a 5.4 sack percentage. He had a 78-49 overall regular-season record.

In contrast, Dak Prescott earned a completion percentage of 65.8, 97 touchdowns (TD% 4.7) to 36 interceptions (INT%1.7), averaging 246.5 yards per game, and a final quarterback rating of 97.0. Prescott was sacked 136 times, a 6.2 sack percentage. He owns a 40-24 overall regular-season record.

As you can see, the pair don’t differ substantially in terms of statistics. However, Prescott does win in the rushing department, which shouldn’t surprise anyone.

Prescott has tucked the football 241 times for 1,221 rushing yards and 21 scores. In comparison, Romo has 238 totes of 620 rushing yards and five scores.

What’s playoffs got to do with it?

Let’s go a little deeper into the playoff numbers. Surely, the two will look different under the playoff spotlight, right?

Tony Romo played in six playoff games, going 2-6 in the process. He earned a completion percentage of 61.6, eight touchdowns (TD% 4.3) to two interceptions (INT% 1.1), averaging 219.3 yards per game, and a final quarterback rating of 93.0.

Dak Prescott played in three playoff games, going 1-2 in the process. He earned a completion percentage of 64.1, five touchdowns (TD% 4.9) to two interceptions (INT% 1.9), averaging 264.7 yards per game, and a final quarterback rating of 95.7.

As you can see, the numbers for Romo and Prescott don’t swing favorably in either direction. Honestly, I was surprised.

Of course, Dak Prescott is entering prime years. He is gearing up for a big payday as he enters his fifth season an NFL starter. While Romo’s storybook career is written, Prescott has many productive years left in front of him. His saga continues.

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The quarterback of the Dallas Cowboys franchise is judged on playoff success and ultimately, Lombardi Trophies. If Dak Prescott can earn a title or two for the Dallas Cowboys organization, something that is absent on Romo’s resumé, he’ll stretch his legacy and sit among the elite.