Maybe it’s nothing more than wanting to put a positive spin on things, but Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones continues to believe that quarterback Dak Prescott will return to the lineup sooner than the six to eight weeks initially forecast. Prescott underwent surgery following the team’s season-opening loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to repair a fracture at the base of the thumb on his throwing hand.
“I don’t know that anybody knows [when he’ll be back], but when he [gets enough strength in his hand], then you’ll probably see some real advancement in his timeline,” Jones said on 105.3 The Fan.
“I don’t know when that is, but I do know that with a good airing out last week, everybody recognizes that he’ll be back sooner than later as far as the timeline. It really could be a minimum of two weeks up here in my mind,” he said, which would put Prescott returning in Week 4 to play against Washington.
“Now, that’s very optimistic,” Jones continued. “But he’s got the kind of repair there that will allow him to not have a lot of fear of re-injuring it. It’s just a question of the grip.”
The Cowboys picked up win No.1 in Week 2 with a victory over the Cincinnati Bengals led by a solid performance from backup QB Cooper Rush.
Jones has squashed any rumors that Prescott could lose his job the same way he earned it, through injury. In part, getting Prescott back sooner than anticipated played into the team’s decision not to seek outside help and instead rely on Rush to get the job done.
After initially saying there was a possibility that Prescott might return as soon as Week 3 against the New York Giants, Cowboys CEO Stephen Jones altered his statement, clarifying that the best return date for Prescott might be Week 4 against Washington or, more likely, Week 5 against the Rams.
“So far, everything has gone his way: from the surgery to the swelling after the surgery, [it] was very minimal compared to what it can be,” Stephen Jones said, according to a post from Jon Machota of The Athletic.
In relief of Prescott, Rush turned in a solid performance that featured heavy doses of ground-pounding from running backs Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard. Deep-on-the-chart receiver Noah Brown also had a stand-out performance, collecting five passes from Rush to gain 91 yards and earning his first NFL touchdown.
The offense looked more patient in Week 2 under Rush than in Week 1. After catching only two passes on 11 targets in Week 1, receiver CeeDee Lamb had a team-leading seven receptions on 11 targets in Week 2 but has not yet caught a touchdown in 2022. Pollard, who is expected to play a bigger role in the passing game this season, had five catches for 55 yards.
There is more good news for Cowboys fans, as it appears more likely that receiver Michael Gallup may be available for Week 3 when the Cowboys take on the New York Giants on Monday Night Football. It will be another opportunity for Rush to demonstrate that he has the skills to guide the Dallas Cowboys offense as the team looks to pick up its first divisional victory this season.