When the Cowboys failed to get Dak Prescott locked into a long-term deal, again, a lot of people started to speculate if he will remain with Dallas for years to come.
Though a deal will probably get done between Prescott and the Cowboys eventually, let’s say it does not happen and explore some of the options for a quarterback that Dallas would have to look at if they moved on from Prescott.
The Cowboys already have a veteran quarterback under contract in Andy Dalton. He would most likely be the first option if Dak were to disappear.
Dalton, who was picked up after being released from the Bengals, has not had a stellar career.
During his nine years in Cincinnati, Dalton threw for over 31,000 passing yards and 204 touchdowns, but there is a reason he was never in contention for a league MVP. Dalton’s record during his time in Cincinnati was 70-61-2.
Even though that record is nothing to get excited about, there is no denying that Dalton has the experience. Being a starting quarterback in the NFL for nine seasons still earns some respect and some could argue that the talent around him with the Bengals was never great, despite A.J. Green and Joe Mixon. Their offensive line was ranked at the bottom of the NFL by Pro Football Focus in three of the last five years.
If Prescott were to leave, maybe Dalton could resurrect his pro career or maybe he would not. The Cowboys also have two other names at quarterback on their roster who could take the spot, but they are very unproven.
In the 2020 draft, Dallas selected James Madison University quarterback Ben DiNucci. DiNucci began his career at Pitt but transferred after his sophomore year. In his senior year at James Madison, he passed for 3,441 yards and 29 touchdowns with a completion percentage of 71 percent.
Also on the Dallas roster is quarterback Clayton Thorson. Thorson was drafted by the Eagles in 2019 but ended up on Cowboys practice squad. Thorson played for Northwestern during his college career, where he set the school record for passing yards, completions, and touchdowns. He is also the only quarterback in Big Ten history to pass for 10,000 yards and rush for 20 touchdowns.
Despite their success in college, DiNucci and Thorson are inexperienced and the NFL is a whole different world. If the Cowboys were to replace Prescott from within, Thorson would most likely be the top candidate.
The Cowboys would also have some options around the league. Cam Newton is a player that many know. He is currently on a one-year deal with the Patriots so it is not clear how that will play out, but if he became available again in 2021 the Cowboys may look his way.
Newton played in Carolina for nine seasons, where he won an MVP, led his team to four playoff appearances, and a Super Bowl. He threw for over 29,000 yards, 182 touchdowns, and put up over 4,000 rushing yards.
If the Cowboys wanted a player comparable to Prescott, Newton would be their guy. Only time will tell if he stays in New England or not and if he can still perform. For right now he may or may not be a future option.
Mitch Trubisky, Tyrod Taylor, Jameis Winston
A few other names also come to mind as free agents like Mitch Trubisky, his contract with the Bears is almost up, Tyrod Taylor, or maybe Jameis Winston if he improves during his year with the Saints.
Dallas could also look to the 2021 draft for a new quarterback, where there are a few potential options. Trevor Lawrence and Justin Fields will be up for grabs in the draft next year, but they will be highly valued. Unless the Cowboys have a disastrous season this year those two most likely will not be available by the time they have their pick.
Jamie Newman // Wake Forest
There are some more options though. Jamie Newman played at Wake Forest, where he threw for more than 2,800 passing yards and 26 touchdowns.
He entered the transfer portal and will be playing for Georgia this season, so keep an eye on him.
Brock Purdy // Iowa State
Another option is Iowa State quarterback Brock Purdy. Purdy is entering his junior year after throwing for 6,232 passing yards and 43 touchdowns already. He also has 16 rushing touchdowns.
He has recorded 16 interceptions, but after another year of play, he may be developed enough to get a shot.
Trey Lance // North Dakota State
Trey Lance is the quarterback for North Dakota State. He recently led his school to a national championship in 2019 after throwing for 2,786 yards and 26 touchdowns.
He also rushed for 1,100 yards and 14 touchdowns.
Scouts predict Lance will be a first-round pick in the draft.
The Cowboys have some options if the situation with Prescott were to get worse, but their best bet would probably be to hold onto Prescott.
Good quarterbacks are hard to find.
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