Following the game that transpired this past Sunday in Charlotte, there has been plenty of blame placed on the offensive play calling and for good reason. What was lost in the initial knee jerk reactions on local radio and social media is the play of 3rd year quarterback Dak Prescott. Just like the title states the performance was good, bad and ugly. So starting with the good, Prescott did a good job of his short throws.
The biggest part of Prescott’s game that many have pointed out was his accuracy was very high when it came to short throws. This of course is referring to passing behind the line of scrimmage up to 10 yards downfield. Mike Leslie of WFAA in Dallas broke down Prescott’s throws from Sunday.
Went through and charted Dak Prescott's 29 throws from the #Cowboys Week 1 loss to the #Panthers, by distance thrown:
Behind LOS: 4-6, 20 yards
0-5 yds: 6-7, 39 yards
5-10 yds: 6-6, 62 yards
10-20 yds: 3-9, 49 yards
20+ yds: 0-1, 0 yards
— Mike Leslie (@MikeLeslieWFAA) September 10, 2018
By looking at this breakdown you can see that 71% of Dak Prescott’s passing yards with a completion rate of 84.2% came from passes behind the LOS to 10 yards up-field. In this particular instance he fit the oft-overused narrative. There is no denying that this is where Prescott wins.
The fanbase and media alike want Prescott to go downfield more often but as his numbers show, 30% completion just isn’t going to cut it.
This was a bad miss to Michael Gallup. A better throw and this is a huge gain. pic.twitter.com/AnFnhPe01A
— Marcus Mosher (@Marcus_Mosher) September 11, 2018
One of the biggest issues you find when watching Dak Prescott is the inability at times to throw with anticipation. Often missing the targeted receiver or not allowing the receiver the opportunity to make the catch. On this play Michael Gallup is running a drag route across the middle of the field with no defender in sight. The result ended up as a first down on a defensive penalty but the team missed a golden opportunity with this play.
Prescott isn’t putting himself in a good position with this play. First thing that is immediately noticeable is his footwork in the pocket. Prescott doesn’t have a good base under him to make this throw with accuracy and good ball placement. Dak needs to step into his throw with his foot pointed towards the intended receiver and drive the ball to Gallup for a huge gain. This is one of the bad snaps Prescott had against the Panthers.
Biggest miss of the game by Dak Prescott. Just can't muster the arm strength to get it to a wide-open Blake Jarwin. pic.twitter.com/9gGyrapjwx
— John Owning (@JohnOwning) September 10, 2018
This is the type of play we have seen time and time again go for a big gain. Dak Prescott is one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL when throwing on the run. On this play Prescott misses an open Blake Jarwin by short hopping the ball in front of his tight end. This pass needs to be up the field so Jarwin can catch the ball in stride and continue into Panthers territory.
At this point in the game, this was the furthest the offense had made it in the game. By making either one of these throws it could possibly be a different outcome.
Prescott needs to take this game as a learning opportunity and apply that to the New York Giants to avoid an 0-2 start.
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