Mandatory Credit: Photo by Ron Jenkins/AP/Shutterstock (13578376bt) Dallas Cowboys’ Dak Prescott (4) looks to throw during the first half of an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears, in Arlington, Texas Bears Cowboys Football, Arlington, United States – 30 Oct 2022
The Dak Prescott fans saw on Sunday against the Chicago Bears is the Dak Prescott they have been waiting to see since the Cowboys were eliminated in the wild-card round of the playoffs last season.
Prescott found receivers, running backs, and tight ends running open all day, completing 21 of 27 passes for 250 yards and two touchdowns. He did have one interception late in the first half on a pass that was perfectly played by Bears defender Eddie Jackson, but he still ended the day with a quarterback rating of 114.5.
It could not have come at a better time, with the Cowboys beginning a tough stretch of games as the season passes the midway point.
But a horrific performance in 55-minutes of action in Week 1 against Tampa Bay, followed by a thumb injury late in the game, and fans would have to wait longer than expected.
Now one thumb surgery and one lackluster performance against Detroit later, and the Cowboys franchise quarterback finally arrived for his 2022 season.
And it could not have come at a more opportune time, as the Cowboys’ defense had one of their worst performances of the season to this point.
Prescott struggled in all phases of the passing game for three quarters in the Cowboys’ Week 7 win over Detroit, his first action since the injury, but started to find something in the fourth quarter.
The biggest question heading into Week 8 was whether Prescott would pick up where he left off against the Lions or revert back to his performance against Tampa Bay, where he threw for just 134 yards and one interception in the loss.
For the sake of the Cowboys’ season, Prescott needed to pick up right where he left off against Detroit and that he did. The Cowboys used a simple game plan, allowing Prescott to make easy reads and throws to start the game.
His early success on the first drive allowed him to build confidence, and that didn’t work out so well for the Bears.
Prescott was throwing darts early, completing four of his first five passes for 40 yards on that opening drive of the game. Having that success through the air allowed Prescott to use his legs to get the Cowboys on the scoreboard early in the game by way of a seven-yard run. From there, Prescott and the Cowboys’ offense never looked back.
Prescott completed 16 passes in the first half, all of them coming on the four touchdown drives in the first 30 minutes. Of those 16 completions, nine went for 10 or more yards, including his 21-yard touchdown strike to CeeDee Lamb.
The Cowboys got more out of the running game in the second half, which allowed Prescott to be even more surgical when it came time to put it in the air.
Of his five completions in the final 30 minutes, three of them went for more than 10 yards, including his most important throw of the game – a 30-yard strike to Dalton Schultz on third and nine from the Dallas 26 with the Cowboys clinging to a 28-23 lead and the Bears charging.
Four plays later, and the Cowboys were in the end zone again, pushing the lead to 35-23 and never looking back.
Yes, he had help from Tony Pollard’s career-best day, but in the end, this victory came by way of the accurate right arm on Prescott.
And that can only have fans thinking about the possibilities that could be over the next nine games instead of worrying about what happened in the last eight.
So, let’s enjoy this one and relax over the bye week because the next great test – a battle at Green Bay in Week 10 – will be here before you know it.