Dallas Cowboys: 5 most important free agents in 2021

Xavier Woods, Dallas Cowboys, (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Xavier Woods, Dallas Cowboys, (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /
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Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys
Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports /

1. Dak Prescott, Quarterback

The single biggest quandary facing the Dallas Cowboys this offseason will be what they should do with starting quarterback Dak Prescott. Prescott went down with a gruesome, season-ending ankle injury in the teams’ week five matchup against the New York Giants. He is reportedly doing well in his recovery.

The fifth-year signal-caller was on pace to shatter the single-season passing yardage record before his injury. Since coming into the league in 2016 Prescott has made two Pro Bowls and led his team to the playoffs twice. The Cowboys are 42-27 with Prescott under center.

Last season Prescott posted career highs in passing yards with 4902 and passing touchdowns with 30. However, the team failed to make the playoffs in a disappointing finish to the year.

Since losing Dak in week five Dallas has gone 1-5 and is currently last in the dreadful NFC East. The teams’ struggles this year have allowed the team to be in contention for a high draft pick in the upcoming 2021 NFL Draft. A draft class with several highly talented quarterbacks including Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence and Ohio State’s Justin Fields.

The reason why Prescott’s contract will be expiring at the end of the season is that he only signed a one-year franchise tag with the team this offseason after contract negotiations stalled out. That means that Dallas will once again be forced to make a decision on Prescott.

Despite the possible temptation of the promising young quarterbacks in this year’s draft, all signs point to the fact that Dallas wants to make Prescott their quarterback of the future. The teams’ owner Jerry Jones even dismissed the notion that they would draft a quarterback as “crazy.” However, that has not stopped the rampant speculation surrounding the organizations’ quarterback situation moving forward.

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It is unclear what the Dallas Cowboys will do if they are actually faced with the possibility of drafting either Trevor Lawrence or Justin Fields. However, the team should bring Prescott back. Whether they want to give him the franchise tag for another year to see how he recovers from his ankle injury or whether they can finally work out a long-term deal he has proven he is a franchise quarterback and has represented the team well on and off the field.

Verdict: Bring Dak Prescott back