Nobody envisions a sophomore slump for Dak Prescott.
The Dallas Cowboys quarterback is known for his work ethic and poise. He’s not going to take a step back in Year 2.
But how much of a step forward can there be? After all, Prescott is coming off one of the best seasons by a rookie quarterback in NFL history.
He led the Cowboys to a 13-3 record with 3,667 passing yards, 23 touchdowns, four interceptions and a 104.9 passer rating.
But veteran tight end Jason Witten has already seen promising signs that Prescott is going to take his game to another level. Witten mentioned a third down play in Thursday’s practice in which Prescott made a pre-snap check to account for a blitz and then converted the third down.
“His ability to kind of take command at the line of scrimmage is rare for a guy in his second year to have that approach,” Witten said. “Certainly he’s a playmaker. He can get on the edge. He’s big. He’s strong. He’s athletic.
“But I think his calls at the line of scrimmage have grown from Year 1 to Year 2. He deserves a lot of credit for that because I know a lot of time he put in to do that.”
Witten also praised Prescott’s accuracy throughout the off-season. Prescott didn’t throw an interception in organized team activities or minicamp. He threw six interceptions in training camp in Oxnard, Calif., although some of them came with Prescott taking more risks down the field than he would during the season.
“He’s extremely accurate,” Witten said. “He made some really big-time throws in camp.”
Prescott had a perfect passer rating in his limited work Saturday against the Indianapolis Colts. He’ll try to replicate that this Saturday against the Oakland Raiders in his most extensive game action before the regular-season opener Sept. 10 against the New York Giants.
Everybody has good things to say about Prescott so far.
“He’s certainly has been remarkable with how he’s handled everything, right from the start,” coach Jason Garrett said. “You’ve heard me say this many times but the first impression that we had during the draft process and once he got here, he’s just a professional. He goes about it the right way and does not seem distracted by anything on the field or off the field. Just how he handled everything last year, the way our team handled it last year, is a testament to that.
“He’s come back this year and worked as hard as anyone in the building. He sets the pace for us in practice and guys around him respond to him. He’s very focused on what he needs to do each and every day to be the best player he can be and how he can help our football team. He’s fantastic to be around, and he’s done an outstanding job.
“He’ll continue to grow as a quarterback. It’s not going to be perfect going forward, it hasn’t been perfect up to this point. But you handle the situation and you keep moving forward, and he has done a great job of that.”
Cowboys vs. Raiders
7 p.m. Saturday, KTVT/11