Dak Prescott or Tony Romo?

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Dak Prescott or Tony Romo? Has been a common question entering week three of the 2016 NFL season. Ya can’t fix stupid. Come On Man!

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Dak Prescott or Tony Romo is a topic I can’t believe I am even wasting the time to answer. However, there are a lot of Cowboys’ fans out there that are heavily influenced by the propaganda put out  by the media.

It is my job to report the truth objectively based solely on statistical facts and film study.  Truth be told, I would take a Tony Romo playing with broken ribs over a 100% healthy Dak Prescott. The same goes for a Tony Romo playing with two Transverse Process fractures in his back.

Did folks forget Tony Romo’s late-game heroics in San Francisco  came while he was playing in excruciating pain?

Romo suffered both a fractured rib and a punctured lung against the 49ers.

Despite leaving the game for most of the third quarter, Romo  returned and played brilliantly in the fourth quarter and overtime. The Cowboys went from trailing 24-14 to winning 27-24 following a clutch performance by All-Pro quarterback Tony Romo. You can’t coach that folks. It’s the result of incredible physical and mental toughness combined with years of experience.

People continue to talk about Romo’s career best season in 2014. The same  year he was snubbed for the league MVP award in favor of Aaron Rodgers. Tony Romo led the entire NFL  finishing the season with a passer rating of 113.2. He had the Cowboys ranked top 5 in scoring averaging 29.5 points per game. And, the Cowboys were one overturned  pass away from the NFL championship game. But, they seem to forget he accomplished this while playing with two transverse process fractures in his back.

Dak Prescott or Tony Romo? Qualifications.

NFL records

Career

  • Most passing attempts through 100 starts
  • Most consecutive road games with at least one touchdown pass: 41 (2009 – present)
  • Highest QB Rating in month of December (133.7)
  • Highest QB Rating in 4th quarter
  • Most games with 135+ passer rating in a season (6)
  • Third all time career passer rating of 97.1

Dallas Cowboys team records

Career

  • Dallas Cowboys career leader in passing touchdowns and passing yards
  • Games with 3+ touchdown passes: 40; previously held by Danny White (20)
  • Games with 300+ yards passing: 46; previously held by Troy Aikman (13)
  • Career passing yards: 33,626, previously held by Aikman (32,942)
  • Lowest career interception percentage: 2.6% (minimum 16 starts; previously held by Aikman with 3.0)
  • Touchdown passes: 245 (previously held by Aikman with 165)
  • Most 4th Quarter Comebacks/Game-winning drives (28) -(Previously held by Roger Staubach with 23)
  • Consecutive games with a TD pass: 38 (2012–2014); previously held by Romo (20, 2010–11)
  • Highest career passer rating: 97.1 (Aikman 81.6, Staubach 83.8)

Season

  • Games with 300+ yards passing: 9 (2012); previously held by Romo (8 – 2009)
  • Passing TDs: 36 (2007); previously held by Danny White (29)
  • Passing yards: 4,903 (2012); first and only Cowboys’ quarterback to throw for more than 4,000 yards in a season (2007, 2009, 2011, 2012)
  • Completions: 405 (2012); previously held by Romo with (347–2009)
  • Attempts: 611 (2012); previously held by Romo (550–2009)
  • First quarterback in franchise history to average over 300 passing yards a game in a season (306.4 – 2012)

Game

  • Romo has twice thrown 5 TD passes in a game (Nov 23, 2006 and October 6, 2013) a record he shares with Troy Aikman (September 12, 1999.)
  • On Dec 21, 2014, Romo completed a team record 90.0% of his passes (18 of 20) in a home game against the Indianapolis Colts.
  • Most passing yards in a game, 506 yards against the Denver Broncos on October 6, 2013.

Dak Prescott has two NFL starts and is yet to throw a TD pass. Come on Man!

Dak Prescott or Tony Romo? In the red zone.

Despite enduring two Transverse Process fractures in his back for a significant portion of the season. Tony Romo completed 37 of 50 passes (64.9%) for 284 yards, (5.0 YPR): amassing 21 TDs and only one interception for a passer rating of 109.2 inside the opponents 20 yard line. He converted 45.6% of third downs in the red zone as well.

Dak Prescott has completed 5 of 11 passes (45.5%) for 25 yards (2.3 YPR): amassing zero touchdowns and zero interceptions for a passer rating of 52.5 He converted on 3rd down 9.1% of the time.

The most important aspect of playing quarterback in the NFL is being able to get through all 5 reads quick enough to find the open man in the red zone. He must then have a quick enough release and enough accuracy to throw in to very tight windows because the entire defense is condensed in to a small area. Those windows close extremely fast down there folks. Dak ain’t ready.

Dak Prescott or Tony Romo? In the clutch.

In the fourth quarter, Tony Romo completed 70 0f 132 passes (68.6%) for 739 yards (7.7 YPR), 7 TDs and 3 interceptions for a passer rating of 100.1. He converted on 3rd down 35.3% of the time.

While running the two minute offense, Tony Romo completed 55 of 80 passes (68.6%) for 663 yards (8.3 YPR), 7 TDs and zero interceptions for a passer rating of 123.1. He converted on 3rd down 38.8% of the time.

In the fourth quarter, Dak Prescott has completed 12 of 24 passes (50%) for 132 yards (5.5 YPR): amassing zero TDs and zero interceptions for a passer rating of 66.7. He converted on 3rd down 29.2% of the time.

While running the two minute offense, Dak Prescott completed 3 of 8 passes (37.5%) for 45 yards (5.6 YPR) amassing zero touchdowns and zero interceptions for a passer rating of 56.8. He converted on 37.5% of 3rd downs.

Conclusion

While Dak Prescott is showing great poise and a lot of potential, let’s not forget he is a rookie 4th round draft pick. The Cowboys drafted him as a developmental player. The numbers don’t always tell the story. When a quarterback is consistently throwing mostly high percentage underneath passes, the margin for error is extremely small. Thus his lack of turnovers.

I haven’t had time to crunch the numbers for week two, but on 75 offensive plays week one: he only completed one pass for over 20 yards. He was 1 of 10 on passes that traveled more than 15 yards in the air.

Two facts remain following week two.

  • 1. Dak Prescott has not completed a touchdown pass. Had Kirk Cousins not been off target on several deep and/or red zone passes to wide open receivers, the Cowboys would have been gashed.  Dak Prescott will not win any shootouts vs elite QBs with a defense good enough to take away the run.
  • 2. With Dak Prescott at the helm, the Cowboys are ranked 27th in the NFL averaging a meager 6.9 yards per reception. They are tied for dead last with zero passing TDs. Patriots rookie 3rd string quarterback Jacoby Brisset, having had no reps with the starters, stepped in for the injured Jimmy Garoppalo and completed 66.7% of his passes. He averaged 10.2 YPR: with a long of 37 yards behind a make-shift offensive line. Following two full starts (75 attempts),  Prescott is yet to complete a pass for over 30 yards.

To answer the question: Dak Prescott or Tony Romo? I don’t know about you Cowboys faithful, but I will take a banged up Tony Romo over a healthy Dak Prescott six days a week and twice on Sunday. Let the kid finish developing before you even consider penciling him in over the veteran who owns every passing record in franchise history. Especially when Prescott only has two NFL starts under his belt.

To the folks who talk about Dak Prescott’s poise and mobility, I advise you watch the video below. He needs to develop the ability to make big plays down the field and in the endzone while under pressure. Not just check the ball down.

Tony Romo gives the Cowboys the best chance to win a Super Bowl. You can take that to the bank!

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  • BigDIndiana

    More Dak bashing LOL. Personally I don’t care about how far he (or Romo) throws the ball. Only 2 things….don’t turn it over and sustain drives. Aside from points of course.
    Vs Skins 73.3% completions (22 for 30 292 yards) and 13.3 yards per reception
    10 play drive end of 4th qrtr for the winning TD. Good enough. Upgrade over “three and out” Weeden and Cassel for sure. If he can get us .500 ball, which I think he can, Tony should have a minimum of 9 games and a good shot at the playoffs. Shouldn’t even be an argument of Dak or Romo, as JJ and Dak himself admit this is still Romos team.
    We lucked out a bit indeed Cousins didn’t earn that 20 mil per and had some huge misses and a pick. They might have hit 600 yards if he wasn’t spraying the ball around. Interesting if Durant gets more time or even starts.

    • Al

      I understand what you are saying. This article is not intended to bash Prescott. It is intended for the folks ready to name him the starter over Romo. Also Moore threw for 435 yards and 3 TDs in his 2nd start without the benefit of training camp to develop some chemistry with the receivers and got criticized by the same media that is a hyping a QB who relies primarily on short underneath passes and has zero TDs.. Anathema.

      The Redskins already had a terrible run defense and got gashed by the 33 year old Wiiliams week one. Week 2 vs the Cowboys they lost their starting NT due to an injury. Without the rushing TDs against a horrible Redskins run defense: the Cowboys lose in a bad way. If he can’t find the endzone with his arm, the Cowboys will be in trouble.

      • BigDIndiana

        I haven’t heard anyone use “anathema” since cowgirl was a pup LOL If he keeps getting them in a position to have TD runs from 1, 4 and 6 yards doesn’t matter to me, whatever gets the “W”. He had 1 for sure and probably 2 drops that should have scored. Recently we went a whole year and only had 3 TDs on the ground. I think our team average was under 4 YPC in the skins game. Not good. Doesn’t matter to me how far he throws it, Moore had a 7.5 yard per catch for 3 games. No turnovers, sustain some drives and I’m happy.

    • Al

      Trust me: If Moore went two games without a passing TD, he would be getting bashed by every media outlet on the planet and you know it. AND folks seem to forget that the Cowboys defense gave up 21 pts to Cousins in the first quarter in that game and couldn’t make a stop when Moore started making a comeback run.

      • BigDIndiana

        The bashing on the DC site, not me, from what I remember was him throwing 6 INTs in 3 games.

        • Al

          Not having many reps with the receivers and making a lot of high risk throws will lead to that. He is a gun slinger like Romo and Favre. He isn’t afraid to make those throws. He came from a timing based offense. With a full camp to develop chemistry, the results would have been much different.

  • Lionone1

    I’m not expecting much from the team this year. The defense will get obliterated by good offenses. It will be a fun ride seeing how Dak and Elliot do until Romo comes back.

    • Al

      If the pass rush improves: IE Lawrence coming back and a healthy Tapper: things could change. At least Romo can win some shootouts against most QBs and make up for the poor defensive play. As long as the Cowboys don’t impose a deep threat and or a passing threat in the red zone, teams will concentrate on stopping the run.

      • BigDIndiana

        Had almost forgotten about Collins, working in slowly from missing all of camp. Apparently from the DC site he has been improving enough he might start and add some punch to the middle at 311 lbs. DLaw at RDE, Crawford at LDE and McClain at the 3 might give a decent starting 4. Maybe the cavalry is coming LOL

    • BigDIndiana

      Giving up 4.8 yards per carry, OUCH. Hard to win doing that. Hope Nzoecha can play the middle when he gets back being a bigger dude. I like Hitch at Will but not sure he is big enough in the middle.

      • Johnathan Nguyen

        We truly miss that pot-smoking55 in the middle lol. Hitchen can not play the middle. He’s a Will.

        • BigDIndiana

          Shame the dude is 6′ 4″ 260 and can run like a deer…and doesn’t seem to give a hoot.

  • Johnathan Nguyen

    Cowboys coaches helped protect the rookie with a bevy of play-action and roll-out calls. The biggest difference i see is Dak’s throws to tight or contested windows. He is just not there yet and for me, it is expected. Accuracy has always been his weaker game, don’t let that 73% completion fools you. It was mostly to wide open receivers or TE on roll out. I think the coaches need to call game plans for Dak like they did last week to help him hide his weaknesses. For the uneducated fans calling for Tony’s seat on this team..C’ommon man! Stop the madness.

    • BigDIndiana

      I think the people saying that are doing it out of frustration that Romo has stayed hurt the last 2 seasons. When healthy the dude can ball and its his job. They are doing the same thing the Seahawks did with Wilson several years ago. Big difference the Seahawks had a beast of a defense that didn’t put him in bad spots. He had a really good preseason and they pulled back the playbook and played to his strengths.
      Dak did have rollouts but the majority of his 30 passes came from the pocket. They are pulling back and playing to what he does well, which is what they should do while he gets his feet wet in the league. I’ll admit I thought he might struggle when the real lights came on but is managing the games good enough to put the team in a position to win.

      • Johnathan Nguyen

        Well said, here to beating the Bears tomorrow 🙂

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