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Dak on fatherhood, finishing 2023 season strong


FRISCO, TX — Dak Prescott has suffered a massive amount of unfathomable loss in his life, from his mother Peggy losing her life to cancer to his brother Jace losing his to suicide, but he's recently been blessed with news that has him rightfully flashing all 32 of his pearly whites — announcing this past weekend that he and his significant other are expecting their first child.

To be more specific, the two are preparing to welcome a baby girl to the world, in early March, and while Prescott won't reveal the chosen name, he's beaming with elation when discussing the blockbuster news. 

"It's super exciting, it really is," said Prescott. I actually wanted a girl. Part of it, I think, was to not get too excited for a boy but, no, I do want a girl. I'm blessed and thankful. Obviously, everyone knows what my mom means to me so just being able to raise a little girl, I'm excited for all of the challenges.

"I know it's not gonna be easy to be my daughter — or being a Prescott — but I'm looking forward to every bit of it."

Having turned 30 this past July, Prescott openly reflected on the timing of everything, unsure he would've been mentally prepared for all that comes with having a newborn before this exact moment; and he's not concerned with any supposed issues with balancing fatherhood and football.

It's a topic many of his teammates are already well-versed in, including those who have welcomed new additions over the past several months — i.e., KaVontae Turpin, Tony Pollard and Donovan Wilson.

"I can definitely say it would've been harder early in my career, but this comes with growth and growing up," said Prescott. "It comes with life — something I'm super excited about, super blessed. I can't imagine being blessed like this early on in my career. God's timing is everything." 

Support systems matter, and Prescott has a great one standing next to him, carrying their daughter, as he conveyed to the media on Monday. 

"I credit Sarah Jane in allowing me to focus on what I want to, especially knowing what this means to me," he said. "That's who deserves a lot of credit for me being able to balance this."

Speaking Sarah Jane, her well-being is the singular reason the news hadn't been announced prior to now, considering that is of the utmost importance at a time like this. 

"We've known for a long time what we were having," said Prescott. "To be candid, I wasn't waiting any particular [length of] time. I think people that know me have known. I would say it hadn't been a secret. If anything, for me, it's about protecting her. Understanding fans can be fans but there's no reason to bother her. 

"The nasty messages that people want to send me, that I deserve and nobody else does, is part of it. The main reason is she was tired of hiding [her belly] in pictures, and the bump is a little bit too big to hide."

Still donning a gigantic smile, the topic then turned fully to football, which goes to the question of balance that he answered eloquently. The Cowboys are now 8-3 on the season, following their latest blowout victory at AT&T Stadium — this time over the Washington Commanders — and their next visitor in their one-and-only three-game homestand is the Seattle Seahawks.

The two teams take the field to battle in prime time on Thursday night, and with a chance to push the Cowboys' win streak at home to 13 games. 

One thing that gives Dallas a continued chance at making waves over the remainder of the season isn't solely the defense, as was the case early in this campaign, but rather the fact Prescott is operating at an MVP caliber over the past several weeks; leading the entire NFL in several major categories.

He's on a heater that mirrors, and actually exceeds in some ways, what he was able to produce in two of the best seasons of his career with the Cowboys (2019 and 2021). 

What does he attribute it to?

"It's dad strength," he said with a grin. "I'll put it that way."

Of course, that's not all.

"It's a credit to everything around me — the team, the organization, the coaches," he said. "People are just handling their business and being prepared. The process has been amazing throughout this season. … Really, the challenge is just staying true to that process and not getting ahead, not getting overwhelmed and understanding that, as I say to myself, I haven't done sh-t. 

"Regular season numbers are great, wins are most important but, at the end of the day, we're trying to stack and keep growing this team to make sure we're getting better each and every week."

That is precisely what the Cowboys will need to do going forward, seeing as their final stretch of regular season games is a gauntlet of playoff-caliber teams that includes the aforementioned matchup against the Seahawks, a looming rematch with the Philadelphia Eagles, a back-to-back trip to Buffalo and Miami, respectively, and a clash with the Detroit Lions before finishing against the Commanders in Week 18.

Now is the time to disprove the narrative that the Cowboys can't show up in big games this season, and Prescott isn't naive to that reality, though he's also not willing to downplay how difficult it is to win in this league — regardless of their decisively lopsided point differential at home of 205-60.

"The NFL is tough in general," he said. "I've said it over and over: don't get obsessed with records. … Injuries [etc.], a lot of things play into records at times. The team's we've played have records that haven't been great, but I can promise you that everyone who comes in, we get their best shot. 

"… When you play the Dallas Cowboys, for the other teams, it's a bit bigger than some of the other games they've played. … We're getting people's best shots. … We're not taking anybody lightly. This is about us and our growth."

Having dropped the first meeting against the Eagles, and seeing as they've won their last two games to move to 10-1 to this point, it's paramount the Cowboys land their fourth consecutive victory when the Seahawks fly into Arlington on Thursday to make the rematch with Philadelphia a meaningful one as it relates to the race for the NFC East crown.

There's also the matter of playoff seeding at play here, as the calendar flips to December, and this is where teams have to lock in and make their stand to help their chances in January.

"Everything we want is still in front of us," said Prescott. 'As long as we control what's on our hands and on our plates, that's our focus and our goal, and that's what we're gonna do."

Spoken like a true dad, if we're being honest.

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