The Cowboys may have tipped their hand on which QB they'll draft

One of the most-discussed topics leading up to the 2016 NFL Draft is the quarterback situation of the Dallas Cowboys. With Tony Romo out for most of last season, Jerry Jones' squad was forced to turn to the likes of Brandon Weeden, Matt Cassel, and Kellen Moore for much of the year. That crew just won't cut it when your high-quality QB option is as prone to serious injury as Romo, who has now broken his collarbone three times in his career (including twice last season).

The Cowboys have been connected in rumors to many of the quarterbacks near the top of the draft -- Carson Wentz is rumored to be in the top three on their big board, the Cowboys' staff left meetings in Florida to go work out Paxton Lynch (a rumored trade-down target), and Jared Goff has been worked out multiple times. But it's possible the Cowboys are tipping their hand on their real QB target: Mississippi State's Dak Prescott.

The Cowboys almost exclusively draft players that they bring to Dallas, whether for private workouts or "Dallas Day," a gathering of prospects with local ties. Prescott showed well at the Senior Bowl, leading the South team to a victory over the Cowboys-coached North squad and taking home MVP honors.

The Cowboys met with Prescott for an hour in late January after get an up-close-and-personal view of that performance. They met with Prescott again at the NFL combine in February, then flew to Starkville to hold a private workout with him in late March as well, per NFL.com. Now, the Cowboys are flying Prescott to their facility for another pre-draft visit, and Prescott told College Football 24/7 that he doesn't expect to make any other visits beyond that prior to the draft.

"Coach Wilson (quarterbacks coach Wade Wilson) just [talked] about what they expect me to do if I come in there, if it's to be in the backup role behind Tony Romo, how do I plan on approaching it and then just talking ball," Prescott said about the combine meeting, per the Dallas Morning News. "They've been productive meetings. He told me their picks and told me that they're thinking about getting a quarterback with one of those picks. He was saying that if I work hard, things maybe could work out."

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has stated multiple times that he doesn't expect to take a quarterback with the team's No. 4 overall pick in the draft, but that the team will likely find a young quarterback to get a "Harvard degree" in quarterbacking behind Romo over the next few years. More traditional quarterbacks that work strictly from the pocket likely would not gain much from Romo's improvisational style, but an athletic passer that uses his legs like Prescott could learn more from the experience.

Could Dak Prescott be Tony Romo's future backup? (USATSI)
Could Dak Prescott be Tony Romo's future backup? (USATSI)

CBS Sports Writer

Jared Dubin is a New York lawyer and writer. He joined CBSSports.com in 2014 and has since spent far too much of his time watching film and working in spreadsheets. Full Bio

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