Cowboys vs. Buccaneers: Dak Prescott trading TDs with Tom Brady
By Peter Panacy
The Cowboys are already getting some excellent play from Dak Prescott, who is trading blows with the Buccaneers’ Tom Brady on Thursday night.
For those wondering if Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott would be truly 100 percent for his team’s prime-time regular-season opener against quarterback Tom Brady and the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Prescott is just fine.
Perhaps even more than fine.
With the bulk of NFL media focusing its attention on Brady and the Bucs’ attempt to start off hot and potentially repeat as Super Bowl champions, it was easy to forget how enticing a matchup of two signal-callers would be featured on Thursday night in the 2021 season kickoff.
Brady and the Bucs got on the board first, yes. Yet that didn’t mean Prescott and Co. had to buckle under the pressure of being on the road and down a touchdown.
Prescott capped off a seven-play, 75-yard drive towards the end of the first quarter with a beautiful 22-yard touchdown to wide receiver CeeDee Lamb to tie things up 7-7:
Of course, Brady is going to do Brady-like things, and him going after tight end Rob Gronkowski for a 2-yard score put the edge back in Tampa Bay’s favor.
But fear not, Prescott was right there to answer back. And so was the Cowboys defense.
Following a Bucs turnover, thanks to defensive end Randy Gregory’s fumble recovery, Prescott and the Cowboys were able to take advantage of good field position in an attempt to tie things up. Yet what made Prescott’s second touchdown so impressive was how he was able to quickly react on a low snap, picking the ball up off the ground and finding wide receiver Amari Cooper for a 5-yard touchdown:
While Dallas’ subsequent extra-point attempt was no good, Prescott’s heroics at least put his team back in the thick of things, and the Cowboys would take a short lead again on a field goal following Brady’s first interception on the night off a dropped pass.
Brady added another long touchdown to Buccaneers wide receiver Antonio Brown, though, which gave Tampa Bay the lead again.
Still, it’s safe to say Prescott is back and isn’t missing a beat.
Dak Prescott, Cowboys put up excellent first-half stats
Prescott’s first-half line was nothing short of excellent. He went 23-of-32 for 224 yards, two touchdowns against zero interceptions with a 112.0 passer rating.
Any doubts whether his shoulder would be a bother should have gone out the window on that first touchdown pass, only reinforced by Prescott’s added impressive playmaking abilities over the first two quarters.
Brady, meanwhile, showed why he was the GOAT, going 13-of-21 for 213 yards with three touchdowns, two interceptions, including a last-second Hail Mary, and a 95.9 passer rating.
At the half, Dallas trails Tampa Bay 21-16, which sets things up for an exciting second half.