FRISCO, Texas – Dak Prescott's mindset was simple with 1:05 remaining in Sunday's season opener and the Cowboys trailing the New York Giants by a point with no timeouts.
"I'm thinking, go win the game," he said.
Prescott ran out of time. After he drove the offense 40 yards, the game ended when receiver Terrance Williams stayed in bounds at the Giants' 40-yard line instead of getting to the sideline to preserve a few more precious seconds.
Still, head coach Jason Garrett took "a lot of positives" from the rookie quarterback's regular-season debut for injured starter Tony Romo.
"I thought he handled himself really well," Garrett said. "I thought he played well throughout the ballgame in everything that we're asking him to do. For the most part he was a very good decision-maker. He made a lot of good throws from the pocket, he had a lot of good throws on the move. He made throws within the system, made spontaneous plays when things broke down. He played with great poise.
"He played through the successes, played through the adversities, gave us a chance to win the ballgame at the end."
Prescott's final stat line (25-of-45, 227 yards) didn't mirror his statistically near-perfect preseason, but he completed passes to nine different receivers and didn't commit a turnover.
The red zone is one area of improvement for the entire offense. The Cowboys scored one touchdown in three trips inside the 20; the Giants were three-for-three.
On the opening drive, however, Prescott did deliver a pass from the Giants' 10 that receiver Cole Beasley couldn't quite haul in. The Cowboys settled for a Dan Bailey field goal three plays later.
"It was an opportunity to score a touchdown," Garrett said. "The ball was a tick high, tipped off his hand. But that was a great scoring chance for us right there when they come at you with an all-out pressure. The answer was there. The quarterback saw it. The receiver saw it. We just didn't convert on the play."