1 crucial offensive adjustment Cowboys must make without Kellen Moore

The Cowboys offense will be better off if they make this one major adjustment.
Jan 16, 2023; Tampa, Florida, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) rushes the ball for a
Jan 16, 2023; Tampa, Florida, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) rushes the ball for a / Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Just about everyone is expecting a bounce-back season from Dak Prescott.

Not all of Prescott's league-leading 15 interceptions were his fault. Poor route-running, dropped passes and miscommunication with a receiver led to at least a handful of picks, but even the Dallas Cowboys QB recognizes he needs to take better care of the football.

There are a number of factors that should allow Prescott to improve as a passer. For starters, Mike McCarthy is installing the Texas-Coast offense -- a revised version of Kellen Moore's scheme -- while Brandin Cooks gives the offense a proven No. 2 receiver and more is expected of Michael Gallup and Jalen Tolbert.

One potential hurdle Prescott and the offense have to clear, though, is that there's no true short-yardage back to replace Ezekiel Elliott.

Giving Prescott more looks as a runner seems like an obvious solution, right? Well in McCarthy's three years as Cowboys head coach, Prescott has just 12 rushing attempts in 192 (!) plays in goal-to-go situations.

Cowboys need to utilize Dak Prescott more as a runner in 2023

According to Warren Sharp of Sharp Football Analytics, Prescott averaged just over 15 rushing yards per game last season (15.2) and logged three carries on goal-to-goal downs, which ranked 23rd among quarterbacks.

These stats -- including in the above tweet -- are extremely damning.

While Moore ultimately called the shots on offense and Ezekiel Elliott was a beast in short-yardage and goal-line situations, McCarthy should recognize as head coach that the offense needs more balance and should utilize one of its (forgotten) weapons when knocking on the door of the end zone.

Prescott hasn't been asked to run much since his devastating ankle injury, but he's now two full seasons removed from the injury. While we shouldn't expect him to run with the same vigor and elusiveness as he did early in his career, he undoubtedly should see an uptick in designed runs.

Remember how pivotal it proved in Dallas' 2018 playoff win against the Seahawks? Remember Prescott's one-yard rushing TD on 4th and goal in the second quarter of the Cowboys' Wild Card win over the Buccaneers in January?

How many times have we seen Prescott lower his shoulder and carry linebackers and defensive backs several yards? At 6-foot-2 and 238 pounds, he has the profile of a QB who should be scoring 5-7 rushing touchdowns per year.

Incredibly, though, Prescott has just two rushing touchdowns the last two seasons and eight total since the 2019 campaign. Mind you, the two-time Pro Bowler notched six rushing scores in each of his first three years in the league.

Nobody's saying the Cowboys should make Prescott their featured ball-carrier in goal-to-go situations, but what's wrong with mixing it up? It'll keep defenses second-guessing and open up more passing lanes in the tight red zone.

Hopefully McCarthy recognizes this and adjusts accordingly with Moore now in LA.

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