3 defensive schemes that Dak Prescott should worry about heading into 2022
The Dallas Cowboys’ offense has all the potential to be one of the best units in the NFL, and they were able to show that early last season. Then, after the injuries to Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott, the deterioration of the offense was easy to see.
It wasn’t all because of the injuries, though. Teams that Dallas started facing later in the season adjusted their way of defending the Cowboys. Opponents mixed in a few different schemes to slow down the once-unstoppable offense.
For this team to get back on track, especially Prescott, they are going to need to figure out ways to beat specific defensive schemes because it should be safe to assume that the teams they will face in 2022 will start deploying these schemes after they were so effective in 2021.
There are three defensive schemes that the Cowboys must figure out adjustments for in order for Prescott to get back on track. Hopefully, head coach Mike McCarthy and offensive coordinator Kellen Moore will be able to cook some counter ideas up because Prescott won’t be able to do it all himself, especially with a new offensive line and less talent at receiver.
3 specific defensive schemes that Dak Prescott and the Cowboys should worry about
1. Cover One Man Defensive Schemes
In 2021, the cover one man defense was the second most deployed defense used against the Cowboys to slow them down, and it was pretty effective at times. Because Prescott is now without his best receiver in Amari Cooper and a WR3 has yet to be solidified, opposing defensive coordinators are going to start using more man coverage against Prescott’s depleted group.
The lack of receivers doesn’t even take into account the new players along the offensive line and the unknowns about Elliott and Tony Pollard. Defenses will look to have more defenders around the line of scrimmage in order to lock up his receivers at the line and throw off the timing of Prescott and the receivers.
This will also be effective in slowing down the running game with more defenders at the line. This scheme is going to force Prescott to make more adjustments at the line to try and manipulate the defense in order to get his guys open. If the QB is able to get some help from his receivers by winning early off the line of scrimmage versus man coverage, it will make things easier for Prescott.
With this type of coverage, the biggest danger for Prescott is making that the linebackers aren’t dropping into underneath zones in order to take away his quick throws. If he’s able to do that, the Cowboys QB will start to get that free safety in the middle of the field to cheat up and allow for big plays down the field to beat this defense.