On Sunday night, the Dallas Cowboys lost more than just their home opener to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They might have also lost their entire season. That after the team’s starting quarterback, Dak Prescott, suffered a hand injury that will require surgery and could have him missing more than half the season.
While the team will rally around backup quarterback Cooper Rush, the fanbase has already began searching for possible replacement for Prescott in Dallas. And while the free agency market is fairly dry at the moment, with Cam Newton being the biggest name out there, perhaps the Cowboys’ brass would look to another NFL team’s roster to try and find a better option under center until Prescott returns.
One name that might catch their eye is quarterback Andy Dalton. When Prescott went down with a season-ending ankle injury in Week Five of the 2020 season, it was Dalton who replaced him. The former longtime Bengal started nine games that season for Dallas, winning four of them as the starter.
Dalton would leave Dallas in the offseason to sign with the Chicago Bears in 2021. But a knee injury would limit his production in the Windy City and he’d eventually lose the starting job to rookie passer Justin Fields.
The 34-year old Dalton is currently the backup to starting passer Jameis Winston playing for the New Orleans Saints. Although quarterback Taysom Hill is still on the roster in New Orleans, he’s weirdly listed as a tight end for some reason. Perhaps the Cowboys would be willing to trade for someone who knows their system already like Dalton and has been able to win games under it.
One of the issues with trading for a replacement for Dak Prescott is that it’s only a temporary gig. Once Prescott returns, that player goes directly to the bench and the team is still without whatever compensation was paid in the trade.
That’s why any move the Dallas Cowboys make would likely have to be very cheap and for a player they believe gives them a much better chance of winning than current backups Cooper Rush, Will Grier, or any other quarterback the team could sign without trading away assets. And that player might just be Andy Dalton.