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Dallas Cowboys expect to make a move at quarterback following Dak Prescott injury

Vincent Frank

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott suffered a hand injury in Sunday’s ugly blowout loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Said injury came late in the fourth quarter when his throwing hand made contact with Buccaneers pass rusher Shaq Barrett.

Almost immediately, Prescott headed to the locker room. Following the game, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones indicated that Prescott will need surgery on his thumb. The expectation now is that he’ll miss between six and eight weeks.

While the Cowboys seem intent on going with Cooper Rush in Prescott’s stead for the time being, embattled head coach Mike McCarthy noted on Monday that they will make a roster move at quarterback later this week.

This could be as minor as elevating Will Grier from the practice squad to back up Rush next week against the Cincinnati Bengals. With that said, McCarthy also made it clear that they are looking at outside options.

It’s not an ideal scenario for Dallas to be in. Most around the league were pushing for them to find a proven backup behind Prescott heading into the season due to his injury concerns and a shaky offensive line. Rush has thrown all of 63 regular-season passes dating back to 2017. Grier has thrown zero touchdowns against four interceptions in 52 career passes since the Carolina Panthers made him a third-round pick back in 2019.

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Jimmy Garoppolo and Dallas Cowboys quarterback options

jimmy garoppolo, dallas cowboos
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
  • Jimmy Garoppolo: McCarthy’s willingness to be frank about the Cowboys’ quarterback situation will lead to speculation that Garoppolo might be an option. He’s currently backing up Trey Lance with the San Francisco 49ers after restructuring his contract. If Dallas is serious about winning this season, putting in a call to the 49ers about the Super Bowl quarterback would make a ton of sense. It also doesn’t hurt that Garoppolo would count only $6.5 million against the cap for an acquiring team.
  • Cam Newton: Another option for the Dallas Cowboys would be free agency. A former NFL MVP, recent reports suggest that Newton would only return to the league in a starting role. Perhaps, coming in and replacing an injured Prescott in Big D could make sense. Dallas would be able to afford signing him off the street without having to throw compensation the other way in the form of a trade. Newton, 33, has accumulated 29 total touchdowns and 15 interceptions over the past two seasons.
  • Gardner Minshew: The idea of Dallas being able to pull off a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles seems highly unlikely. Why would Philadelphia help its division rival fix what is a major issue under center? In reality, the Cowboys would likely have to pay a premium to make this work. With that said, Minshew might be the best fit. He’s counting a mere $2.54 million against the cap in 2022. It’s not like the former sixth-round pick from Washington State has not performed well as a starter in the NFL, either. He’s tallied 41 touchdown passes and just 12 interceptions in 28 career games (22 starts).

Despite these options, Dallas has made it clear publicly that the plan is to go with Rush in Prescott’s stead.

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“He can play at a level that we can win ball games. The main thing about him as a backup quarterback is we didn’t have to alter the offense to have him. That’s a good thing to have continuity. That’s the main reason he won the job. Just count on him. He threw a couple of good balls out there.”

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on Cooper Rush

Whether that’s just PR spin or something completely different remains to be seen. What we do know is that the Dallas Cowboys are at least kicking the tires on outside options after scoring all of three points in its humiliating Week 1 loss to Tampa Bay.