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Mailbag: Let Young QBs Compete For No. 2 Job? Prescott Adjusting Under Center?


I have heard before that the Cowboys can't win without Tony Romo and Jameill Showers was playing better in OTAs. So why not roll the dice and let Showers and Dak Prescott compete for the backup spot?

Bryan:That appears to be the plan at this point. The price of grabbing a quarterback at this time is much too high. Let things cool down and strike later if needed. During practice on Thursday, I thought that both Prescott and Showers handled themselves well. I don't see this as a dice roll at all – this is all about the evaluation.

David: Well, first of all, that's what the Cowboys are doing for the time being. Dak and Showers are going to be operating as the No. 2 and No. 3 quarterbacks until further notice. Personally, I'd rather bring in a veteran because – despite what happened last year – I trust a proven veteran a lot more than a couple of young guys who aren't familiar with NFL schemes. This team won't win if Romo goes down for a prolonged period of time, but a veteran might be able to hold the rope for two or three weeks.


I keep hearing that Dak is struggling under center because he is used to operating out of the shotgun. Can you explain why it is so much more difficult to operate under center, and also, if it is easier for a young QB to stay in the shotgun, why don't they use the shotgun more?

Bryan: If Prescott has to play, I am sure that Scott Linehan will adapt the offensive scheme in order to help him get through the game. For quarterbacks that don't play under center it is hard for them to take the snap, turn their back to the defense and then come back to find the receivers on the field. In the shotgun, everything is in front of them and their eyes never leave the defense. It's an area of the game that Prescott and Showers are both going to have to learn.

David: The entire game changes based on where the quarterback is positioned. From the shotgun, the entire field is in front of you from the get-go. When you drop back from under center, you have to turn your back to the line of scrimmage, re-position yourself and then re-assess the field. On top of that, it changes your play selection – whether that's power running, playaction fakes, etc. To your second point, I honestly think the coaches will try to utilize some more shotgun when Dak is in the game – but they have to acclimate him to pro-style at some point. It can only hurt him as a quarterback if he's one-dimensional in his abilities.

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