We are nearing the NFL season’s halfway point, entering Week 7. Several rookies have obliterated the learning curve and are establishing themselves as bonafide NFL game changers.
The Dallas Cowboys possess what most would call the two top offensive rookies of 2016. The instant and impactful production of QB Dak Prescott and top draft pick and starting running back Ezekiel Elliott are the major reasons why the Cowboys are 5-1 and sitting atop the NFC East despite losing QB Tony Romo before the season began.
Most people expected wide receiver Dez Bryant to carry a greater offensive load in Romo’s absence. However, Bryant has been sidelined since suffering a tibial plateau fracture in his right knee in Week 3. The temperamental but electrifying wide receiver won’t see the field until at least Week 8 against the Eagles following the Cowboys' Week 7 bye, according to NFL Network.
In the meantime, Elliot, who the Cowboys nabbed at No. 4 in the 2016 Draft, doesn’t have a problem heating it up on offense and he’s been getting nicer on his rugged yet refined slice-and-dice each week. He’s not just leading all rookies in rushing, but Zeke’s 703 rushing yards is tops in the entire NFL.
(Photo Credit: USA Today)
He’s already earned the $16.3 million signing bonus he copped in May.
Scouts projected him to be scary dope behind an elite Cowboys offensive line and after just 51 yards on 20 carries on opening night against the New York Giants, Elliot’s stats, focus and ground game has gone all the way up.
It peaked on Sunday in a win against the Packers. Zeke rushed for a career-high 156 yards. He’s also hauled in 11 passes this season and continues to grow as the all-around back the Cowboys projected.
Philadelphia Eagles rookie Carson Wentz has gotten most of the PR love around the NFL, but Prescott leads all rookies in passing yards with 1,491 and total TDs with 10. He went from Tony Romo’s sub to King of Texas in six games. Before the unheralded rookie from Mississippi State assumed control and proved up to the task, everybody around the Lone Star State was asking, “When is Romo coming back?”
What they didn’t know was that Prescott was used to blindsiding the comp, capitalizing on another’s misfortune and seizing the moment.
(Photo Credit: USA Today)
The strong-armed, funky-footed QB came off the bench at Mississippi State as a sophomore after starter Tyler Russell suffered a concussion, and Prescott never relinquished the job as he became a dual-threat beast and was named MVP of the 2013 Liberty Bowl.
He dazzled in the preseason and has been an instant field general in his duties as Dallas Cowboys QB -- a job that holds as much pressure as the presidency.
Today, save for a few Romomaniacs, nobody wants the OG back.
The future is NOW in Dallas and everybody knows it including owner Jerry Jones, who will squash any QB controversy before it ever happens.
It’s Dak Prescott time in Dallas. The Romo Era appears over.