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Cowboys news: Dak Prescott will be judged on what he does in the playoffs

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Cowboys news: Dak Prescott will be judged on what he does in the playoffs
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Here’s your Saturday morning news about the Dallas Cowboys.

Fair or not, Prescott judged by SB-winning standard set by Cowboys legends Staubach, Aikman – Todd Archer, ESPN

As they say, everything is bigger in Texas. That couldn’t be more true when it comes to expectations for the Dallas Cowboys, especially their quarterback Dak Prescott. Prescott, set to play in his fifth career postseason game, will be judged by what level of success he has in the postseason regardless of the circumstances.

Fairly or unfairly, Cowboys quarterbacks are judged by what Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman did in the 1970s and 1990s, respectively, when the Hall of Famers combined for five Super Bowl championships. The accomplishments of every Cowboys quarterback since, despite statistical success (or in Danny White’s case, making it to three straight NFC Championship Games), have just not been good enough.

Unless Prescott pulls off a playoff run over the next month that ends the Cowboys’ 26-year Super Bowl drought, he will have to fight through the unending question of whether he can ever deliver.

Prescott isn’t running from the pressure to do what Staubach and Aikman did.

“I’ve got to say I want to. I want to win the championships and win the titles and everything that they did, and all the games, put this team in that position,” Prescott said. “But I can’t say that that’s at the forefront of my mind, as I’m thinking about what those guys have done, what the great quarterbacks here have done before me. I don’t have any tell on what they did then. It’s about focusing on the now and knowing what I can do, what I’m capable of doing and the opportunity this team has in front of them.”

Blue Chips: Bucs’ Talent Doesn’t End With Brady – Bucky Brooks, Dallascowboys.com

Although the Buccaneers haven’t been a consistent team this year, they still boast enough talent to prove to be a challenge. Ex-NFL scout Bucky Brooks spotlights the key players in Cowboys vs. Buccaneers.

Mike Evans, WR: The big-bodied playmaker notched the ninth 1,000-yard season of his career as the Buccaneers’ No.1 receiver. Evans’ big play potential and vertical route running skills make him a dangerous weapon worthy of commanding double coverage on critical downs. if the Cowboys elect to play Evans “straight up” on the perimeter without help from a safety, the Bucs’ WR1 could go bonkers in the Wild Card Round.

Chris Godwin, WR: The Buccaneers’ co-No.1 wideout is a dangerous playmaker with the size, strength, and leaping ability to overwhelm defensive backs in space. Godwin’s superior physical traits make him a hard matchup for opponents unwilling to utilize loaded coverage to slow down a dependable “chain mover” on the perimeter.

Vita Vea, DT: The super-sized defensive tackle is a rare find as a 350-plus pound run stopper with heavy hands and ballerina-like feet. Vea destroys blocking schemes at the point of attack with his combination of strength, power, and explosion, overwhelming single and double teams at the line of scrimmage. If the Cowboys cannot control the monstrous defender at the point of attack, Vea could tip the game in the Buccaneers’ favor with his dominance in the trenches.

Ranking defensive coordinator candidates the Cowboys could target if Dan Quinn departs – K.D. Drummond, Cowboys Wire

Given the recent success of the Dallas defense, Dan Quinn has been a popular name among candidates for available head coaching jobs. Quinn is rumored to be a finalist for the lead man of the Denver Broncos. Here are a few candidates to keep your eyes on if Denver, or another team, should lure Quinn out of Dallas.

Joe Whitt, Jr., current Dallas secondary coach, defensive passing game coordinator

Whitt, Jr. is the leading candidate, as he was considered for the job when he was brought over in the same swoop that ended in Quinn getting the DC job in 2021. A former assistant of Quinn in Atlanta, he also was a defensive assistant on McCarthy’s Green Bay staffs, so the familiarity is there and the recommendations are assuredly high.

Whitt has overseen the Cowboys secondary that saw the fulfillment of Trevon Diggs’ potential, and the ascension of safeties Jayron Kearse and Donovan Wilson. He’d be a seamless transition.

Aden Durde, current Dallas defensive line coach

Quinn’s specialty is the defense line, and the man he identified to do that job comes with the utmost recommendation. Durde is another Falcons import and has done an excellent job with the defensive end rotation in Dallas. Dorance Armstrong is a factor and he helped rejuvenate Dante Fowler’s career as well as has Sam Williams off to a very strong start. Osa Odighizuwa has shown well in his first two seasons on the interior of the defensive line, but there are a couple of failures at DT as well.

Regardless, Durde was recently mentioned as a down-line HC candidate, and if Quinn doesn’t steal him to be the DC at his next stop, Durde could get the job in Dallas.

Objective for Cowboys’ depleted secondary is clear: slow down Bucs WR Mike Evans – Joey Knight, DMN

The Cowboys secondary will be using some replacement player for injured starters, but they must still figure out how to slow down Mike Evans.

The image has been immortalized in the first-floor hallway of Buccaneers headquarters.

Days after 6-foot-5 receiver Mike Evans made an outstretched, one-handed snag of a short Tom Brady spiral in the end zone against the Cowboys in the Sept. 11 season opener, an enlarged framed photo of the catch (featuring bystander Trevon Diggs in the foreground) was hanging inside the AdventHealth Training Center like a Louvre showpiece.

“It’s a great picture, it’s probably one of the best pictures for sure,” Evans, reared in Galveston, said after his team’s walk-through Wednesday. “But a catch? It’s not my favorite. It’s up there though, it’s pretty good.”

The obvious objective for the depleted Cowboys secondary is to keep Evans, 29, from creating more indelible images in the teams’ rematch Monday night in the NFC wild-card round at Raymond James Stadium. Problem is, the seventh overall pick in the 2014 NFL draft has a collection of single-coverage exploitations suitable for framing.

He expects to be locked up with Diggs for part of Monday evening, maybe DaRon Bland and perhaps even practice-squad newcomer (and three-time Pro Bowler) Xavier Rhodes. He really doesn’t care.

“When we’re healthy, it doesn’t matter who the (defensive backs) are,” Evans said. “Hopefully we get a lot of Cover-One, you know I love that.”

Blogging The Boys Podcast Network and YouTube Channel

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