Dak Prescott moves into top 5 in NFL MVP odds
This season’s NFL MVP race has all the makings of a high-quality competition with multiple candidates who could emerge victorious. Preseason favorite Patrick Mahomes has slipped down the board as the Chiefs struggle, paving the way for other candidates to emerge as potential winners.
Sat, February 12 2022, 10:00 PM
Of all the candidates near the top of the odds board, the name that interests me most is Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott.
Prescott has answered all questions about his ability to bounce back
If we backtrack to the preseason, there were a number of doubts and question marks about Prescott’s health outlook entering this season. Coming on the heels of a devastating leg injury in 2020 that saw him miss almost the entire season, intentional sidelining during the preseason made many wonder if he would even endure a full season’s schedule, let alone perform at a high level for the entirety of it.
Fast forward to today, and Prescott is not only on the field, he is excelling on it. He has already thrown for 1,368 passing yards and 13 touchdowns, and has powered Dallas to a 4-1 record with the team's only loss being a 31-20 squeaker to the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Dallas' strong record helps Prescott's candidacy
The MVP award is presented not only to excellent players, but to excellent players on winning teams. Considering the strength of this Cowboys team, the relative weakness of its schedule, and the seemingly inevitable double-digit win total, Prescott is certain to stay near the top of the odds board all season long.
In Week 1 against the Bucs, Prescott proved that he was ready to take on 2021 with renewed confidence. He threw 58 times in that game, completing 42 passes for 403 yards and three touchdowns. The Bucs have underperformed on defense this year, but it was still an eye-opening performance as the Cowboys very nearly pulled the upset.
Tom Brady missed most of the 2008 season and was asked about Dak Prescott returning after missing a majority of 2020— RJ Ochoa (@rjochoa) September 7, 2021
"He's a really talented player. Really since the day he got in the league he's shown to be a great leader of the team."
(via @Buccaneers) https://t.co/K1xcN8yxG5 pic.twitter.com/F2GiDWU7R0
In Weeks 2 through 4, Prescott didn’t put the ball in the air as much but still decisively led the Cowboys to three front-running victories with excellent game management and efficiency. He completed over 80% of his passes against the Chargers and Eagles, and tossed seven touchdowns against just one interception through that three-game stretch. It was an impressive run against three teams, including the Panthers as well, that are thought to have better than average defenses.
In Week 5 against the Giants, Prescott again passed for over 300 yards and three touchdowns, leading the Cowboys to 44 points and an easy victory.
Prescott is among the league leaders in TD passes and completion percentage
Prescott’s yardage numbers aren’t blowing away his peers, but he is third in the league in touchdowns and second in completion percentage. He is second in passer rating, and as mentioned above, he is playing winning football.
This Cowboys' offense was built to score points in bunches with their strong offensive line and elite receivers. Prescott has been the biggest benefactor of that roster construction, and as the Cowboys continue to win in a watered down division, Prescott will continue to have plenty of opportunity to prove he is not only the Comeback Player of the Year, but the Most Valuable as well.