It’s official: Dak Prescott is good to go for Sunday’s NFC East title game.
The Dallas Cowboys quarterback, afflicted by a sprained AC joint in his right (throwing) shoulder, was not listed on the team’s final Week 16 injury report and will start against the Philadelphia Eagles.
For the third straight day, Prescott wasn’t a full practice participant. But unlike Wednesday and Thursday, he lobbed a few soft tosses on Friday — none traveling more than 10 yards — as Dallas readied for its rivalry matchup at Lincoln Financial Field.
All part of the plan.
“He’ll be pretty limited,” coach Jason Garrett said prior to practice, via Maven Sports’ Mike Fisher. “If he (throws), it won’t be much.”
Prescott is expected to increase his throwing Saturday and, he strongly declared, reside under center in Philadelphia.
“I’ll be good to go Sunday,” he said Thursday, per the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I’m getting better, simple as that. Mobility, function of it, it’s all improving. That’s the key. That’s the goal.”
Prescott confirmed his AC joint issue, which required an MRI, occurred in the first quarter of last week’s victory over the Los Angeles Rams, when linebacker Clay Matthews landed on top of him following a scramble. He acknowledged, however, that not only has this injury popped up in the past — “every other week” at Mississippi State — the should-be Pro Bowler finished the Rams game “without it being an issue.”
“And I expect the same this Sunday,” he said.
In the midst of a career campaign, the NFL’s second-leader passer (4,334 yards) is hoping to punch the 7-7 Cowboys’ postseason ticket in the ever-friendly confines of Philly. A win clinches the division crown and assures Dallas of at least one home playoff tilt while effectively eliminating the Eagles from contention.
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Jerry Jones Expects ‘Top’ Showing from Dak
Before Prescott announced his Week 16 status, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said the contract-year signal-caller will play against the Eagles — and play well.
“I’m totally convinced he’ll be in top form,” Jones said Thursday during an interview with 105.3 The Fan. “We gotta have him in top form and he will be in top form.”
From top to bottom, the Cowboys don’t seem too concerned about Prescott’s availability. His teammates never doubted that he’d suit up and his coaches aren’t worried about the shoulder conflicting with his prior wrist and finger ailments.
“Seem like they are doing fine,” Garrett said, per The Fan.
Stephen Jones Equally Optimistic
Like father, like son. Cowboys VP Stephen Jones echoed Jerry’s belief on Prescott, who’s been lauded for his toughness and ability to manage pain.
“No player at this point at this point in the season is at 100 percent after you go through the grind of an NFL season,” Jones said Friday on 105.3 The Fan, per Pro Football Talk. “But knowing Dak, knowing his competitive nature, knowing how gritty and tough he is, I think we’ll get his best. I think he’ll be right there ready to compete at the highest level, and there’s no one I’d rather have under center than him.”
While Prescott will be active at The Linc, some have wondered about his effectiveness and whether Dallas would need to scale back its playbook due to his bum wing, which could impact accuracy and throw power. Wonder no longer.
“We’ll have the whole playbook open,” Jones said. “Had a lot of conversations with our trainers, with everybody making sure that’s the case. Everybody feels that way.”
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL