Tuesday was a hard day for many players in the NFL — it was Cut Day, the day teams had to get their rosters down to the 53-player maximum. For the Dallas Cowboys, none of the cuts were surprising. But fans were curious to see one thing — which quarterbacks would get cut.
The team got lucky when Tony Romo went down for the final time, which opened the door for Dak Prescott to emerge. But after seeing the team fall flat after Prescott was lost for the season last year, the need for a quality backup was clear.
But would it be Garrett Gilbert, Ben DiNucci, or Cooper Rush? No one was overly impressive during the preseason, which meant the team had to go with the best of the bad — Cooper Rush.
Given how DiNucci played last season, it was a little surprising he was still on the roster. His play during the preseason certainly didn’t help (35-66 for 348 yards with two touchdowns and four interceptions) his case, either. Gilbert was an upgrade over DiNucci but did not exactly play well during the preseason, either.
That left Cooper Rush — who is now the only quarterback not named Dak Prescott on the roster. While his overall track record does not give fans much comfort, should the worst-case scenario happen again, Rush does have the support of Jerry Jones.
“I just think that he’s shown that he can run the complete offense,” the Cowboys owner said Tuesday morning. Credit to him, he had some tough competition. Those guys didn’t cut him any slack. He’s had a lot of rep – a lot of our quarterbacks have, because of the absence of Dak.”
His lack of game experience will concern fans who see the team in a win-now mode. While Jones is confident in Rush now, if there were any reason to think he could operate the offense at a high level, he would not have been let go last May.
Yes, he was resigned after he was let go by the Giants. But is that because of his familiarity with the offense? Or was it because he is good enough to keep the offense on track (if Prescott goes down)?
With a bevy of free-agent quarterbacks hitting the waiver wire as teams cut down to the 53-man roster max, the Cowboys are bound to give a few guys a look. But if they are looking for experience, the selection will be limited to one — Cam Newton.
The former MVP was expected to be the starting quarterback for the New England Patriots this season. But, in a surprising move, the Patriots named rookie Mac Jones the starter and let Newton go.
According to reports, the Cowboys plan on doing “their due diligence’ regarding Newton. While fans will like the comfort that comes with having a quality backup, is Newton a good fit for the Cowboys offense if he is needed? The answer to that question is a debate in itself.