As Dallas Cowboys Get Healthy, Dak Prescott Send Warning to Rest of NFL: ‘This Is a Team That’s Hungry and Pissed Off’
Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys aren’t playing around anymore. Losers of two straight, Prescott, related that there’s an urgency surrounding the Cowboys that should have the rest of the league on notice.
The Cowboys will not rest on their laurels and cruise to a division win in the terrible NFC East only to get rolled over in the playoffs. Prescott believes his team will be much more intimidating than that for the rest of the 2021 season.
Dak Prescott says the Dallas Cowboys are ‘hungry’ and ‘pissed off’
It hasn’t been a great stretch for the Cowboys. Dallas looked like a Super Bowl favorite earlier in the season while riding a six-game win streak, but having lost three of their last four, the Cowboys have to do whatever they can to get out of this funk.
Playing better is, of course, a prerequisite, but there’s definitely an attitude check that has to happen as well. The thing about the Cowboys’ three losses in this stretch is that they were all demoralizing. They got blown out by the Broncos, couldn’t get anything going offensively against the Chiefs, and then lost to the Raiders on a last-second field goal in overtime.
It wouldn’t be shocking to hear that the morale of the team was low, especially in the midst of a COVID-19 outbreak that has head coach Mike McCarthy and several others out for Thursday Night Football.
That’s not the case, according to Prescott.
“This is a team that’s hungry and that’s pissed off,” Prescott said, according to Mike Fisher. “Simply about the way that we’ve executed and the way that we’ve played.”
“This is a tough league; this is a tough business. We’re going to embrace the position we’re in; we’re going to get better, we’re going to lock arms, and this team will never stop fighting,” he also said.
The Cowboys should be close to full strength against the Saints
Prescott is saying the right things, but it also helps that Dallas is expecting to get some firepower back in the lineup.
Wideout Amari Cooper has missed the past two games due to being on the reserve/COVID list, but he is expected to be ready to go against the Saints on Thursday night.
“He’s in all of the preparations other than (Monday’s practice) but he’ll step that up today and we are fully expecting him to be ready by game time,” Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said on 105.3 “The Fan.”
Dallas is also expecting to get star receiver CeeDee Lamb back onto the field after missing time in the concussion protocol, and DeMarcus Lawrence is expected to make his return from a broken foot suffered in Week 2.
Then there’s the case of Ezekiel Elliott, whose knee has been soo banged up that McCarthy actually admitted that he was worried about his star running back.
Jones had previously said that the Cowboys may have to practice load management with Elliott and give Tony Pollard the lion’s share of the reps, but in his recent interview, he went back on that.
“The facts are we expect him to have a serious load against New Orleans,” Jones said of Elliott.
It’s not unrealistic for Dallas to finish the season strong
Over the past few weeks, the Cowboys have proven that anything is possible in the NFL. What looks like an easy win on paper can result in a loss, so that makes it tough to predict that Dallas will roll through the rest of the regular season schedule.
With that said, at the very least, the Cowboys are getting healthy at the right time, and the schedule looks favorable.
Thursday Night Football is normally a short week and thus a tough game, but the Cowboys caught a break having played on Thanksgiving, so they’ll have a full week to prepare for a 5-6 Saints team on a four-game losing skid.
After that comes three-straight games against the NFC East for the Cowboys. Dallas plays Washington, New York, and then Washington again in short order. A tough matchup with the Arizona Cardinals is sandwiched between the final Washington game and the season finale against the Philadelphia Eagles.
Not counting the Cardinals, the remaining teams on Dallas’ schedule are a combined 19-26. It’s not unrealistic to see the Cowboys going at least 5-1 during that stretch, and if they do get back up to full strength and rolling again, the Arizona game can be winnable as well.
They’ll need to stay “hungry” and “pissed off” to finish the season strong, so we’ll see if the Cowboys can back up the words spoken by their quarterback.
Stats courtesy of ESPN and Pro Football Reference.