Dak Prescott is a week away from playing for the first time since the horrific ankle injury of the Dallas star quarterback almost 11 months ago, with little training in training camp and no preseason games for help recovery.
It doesn’t matter, he said. Bring in Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Super Bowl Champion.
“I’m definitely ready,” Prescott said Friday. “It took a lot of work to get there. Whether it was months ago rehabilitating the ankle, to the last (weeks) keeping my feet working while I let my arm rest.”
Prescott was just starting to push his twice surgically repaired right ankle to training limits when a strain on his right shoulder developed at the start of camp in California. He had to be content with mental reps behind the offense for a month before training staff let him launch with full force last week.
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Now the Cowboys say there are no limits for the 2016 Offensive Rookie of the Year as the club prepares for the game-week routine ahead of the Sept. 9 opener in Tampa.
“You have to give him credit for the process he went through himself,” said coach Mike McCarthy. “It’s not like he’s just standing in the back and hasn’t done anything while he’s not throwing. He stays on top of the footwork. His conditioning couldn’t be better.”
Prescott wasn’t sure if throwing too much while recovering from the open fracture and dislocated ankle caused shoulder problems early in camp. Either way, when allowed to throw this hard again, Prescott didn’t care about limiting the speed or frequency of the throws.
“I think that’s my way of playing,” Prescott said. “I just went over there and played in the moment, ripping up passes, without thinking about it, just making the plays I had to make.
“Then after two days like that, realizing that there was no residual effect and that I was not in pain, I followed the plan and it was okay. Yeah, off the shoulder. with leg up to my mind, I’m good to go. “
Days after he got to play again, Prescott didn’t mean it had been blurry in the 10-plus months since he was kicked off the field on a cart, in tears, after the ankle injury. But he said time hasn’t stood still either.
Prescott said the days and weeks seemed to go by quickly because he focused on the details of his recovery, first with the ankle, then with a more methodical approach to warming up for the throw.
There was also a lot to deal with outside of football after Prescott signed a record four-year, $ 160 million contract in March. Already the face of the franchise with many marketing opportunities before the huge salary, Prescott’s presence has grown even further.
Hidden behind it all, Prescott had to prepare to be hit again, restart the race and decide when to start again on his own, the latter being the type of play that led to the ankle injury.
Prescott had hoped to get used to all of these things in a preseason game. Instead, it will be in the first televised NFL game, possibly on a hot and humid night in central Florida.
“I’ve just been here in practice, individuals, taking each rep as if it were a play rep and passing it on to any rep they let me do here at the training, so I know I’m conditioning and preparing for that speed of play, ”Prescott said.
REMARKS: WR Noah Brown is the only Dallas player remaining on the COVID-19 reserve list after being added this week. G Connor Williams was off the roster on Friday, but was limited to training. Others activated in time for the return of the post-training camp break were WR CeeDee Lamb, S Damontae Kazee and DT Carlos Watkins. … RT La’el Collins is still limited to training after a neck problem arose late in training camp.