The NFL homecoming king was crowned in Week 3, and it's Dak Prescott. His appearance at AT&T Stadium on Monday night was his first since suffering a season-ending fractured ankle in Week 5 of the 2020 season, and the two-time Pro Bowler was fighting back emotions during the playing of the national anthem, before going on to take the Philadelphia Eagles out back and beating them like they tried to steal something. Well, to be fair, they did. They wanted to snatch away the shine of Prescott's return home, and an early lead atop the NFC East as well.
Instead, they were walked like a wounded animal right into euthanasia -- losing 41-21 in a contest that wasn't nearly as competitive as that final score would have you believe. It was an outright assault by the Cowboys on both the offensive and defensive fronts and, for the latter, that morphed into a big day for two-time NFL rushing champ Ezekiel Elliott that combined with Prescott finishing with 21 completions on 26 attempts for 238 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions.
His lone mistake was a sack fumble in the end zone that led to an Eagles touchdown to tie the game at 7-7 in the first quarter, which was as attributable to center Tyler Biadasz being mauled by Javon Hargrave as it was Prescott holding onto the ball a split second too long, but Prescott maintained his composure and the Cowboys basically flew away after that error.
The 27-year-old took it all in on Monday night -- every second of every cheer, snap, breath, drop of sweat and even the breeze as it blew into the stadium.
"I think just getting hurt last year and having to sit back and watch football, a different perspective and just different ways people play this game," Prescott told media after the blowout win, via the team's website. "Going back, the experience obviously has helped, but just studying and preparing myself and then all the work that I've put in just to get back healthy -- not only the leg but the shoulder and just this playbook.
"Obviously, the continuity and having Kellen [Moore as offensive coordinator] so many years, I'm just comfortable in this system and everything that is going on around me and having playmakers. That's a credit to guys around me. The offensive line and the receivers, they make my job a whole lot easier."
That said, Prescott isn't simply feeling great, he's playing ball arguably at a higher level than previously seen, and is currently carrying a career-best quarterback rating of 110.1 through the first three weeks; as the Cowboys sit at 2-1 on a season that was two missed kicks away from being 3-0. So by the looks of it, even if owner Jerry Jones hadn't decided to open the roof and doors at AT&T Stadium in Week 3, the Cowboys would've blown them off anyway -- along with every feather attached to the Eagles.
"Yeah, I feel like I'm playing the best I've ever played."
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