Cowboys’ Dak Prescott loses ‘baby fat’, shows leaner physique

FRISCO, Texas — Dak Prescott agrees that his current physique is “definitely” the leanest of his professional career.

Even skinnier than he was in college?

“Total. Never,” the seventh-year Cowboys quarterback said Tuesday after minicamp practice.

Prescott isn’t aiming for hyperbole, not promising he’ll be faster or lighter just because he’s leaner. In fact, his weight hasn’t changed significantly since last season. But his broadcast has led more than one person to tell him lately that he looks skinny.

“People tell me that. I say ‘thank you’,” Prescott said. “It’s the result of working on everything and not just my leg. Whether it’s rotation, diet or whatever, I just focus on all the ways to get better.

“I think I just lost some of the baby fat.”

Whether his body composition reflects more rotational drills or a drop in consumption of Taco Bell and McDonald’s — the staples of Prescott University fast food — the Cowboys are eager for their quarterback to return to full mobility. in the game plan.

Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott goes through drills during minicamp on Tuesday.

Caution is no longer exercised after Prescott’s ankle dislocation and fracture in October 2020. Unlike last offseason, he has been fully participating in team and individual drills since the start of OTA. Prescott performed scrambling drills fluidly in OTA practices, and a minicamp pass rush that knocked him down raised no signal as to his ankle stability. Even his lengthy “prehab” training warm-up has changed, replaced by more efficient methods that he says still guarantee his agility.

“Having no limits has been exceptional, and I think you can clearly see that in the way he’s been moving this year,” Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said. “You look at his body; it is clearly different from what it was last year. It’s leaner, more flexible and just the mechanics, so it can really tackle the mechanics.

“The quarterback drills last year there was a phased phase of different types of drills, how we did them. So there has been no progress this year. He’s been going strong since day one.

Prescott returned from two ankle surgeries and started last season strong, completing 72.4% of passes for 403 yards, three touchdowns and an interception in the Cowboys’ season opener (31-29 loss at Tampa , then reigning champions). He was the talk of MVP through the first six games, a streak in which he completed 73% of passes for 16 touchdowns on four interceptions as the Cowboys won five straight to go 5-1.

Then Prescott strained his calf in overtime of a 35-29 win over New England. He rested through the bye week and missed the Cowboys’ Sunday night win at Minnesota before returning. He said his calf had recovered. But his footwork and mechanics weren’t quite as sharp. He kept that in mind this spring, emphasizing throws from every platform as well as using his back leg and keeping it under him on every throw.

“My details are footwork in the sense of being year-end consistent,” Prescott said on May 25. arrive late. You don’t take these things for granted, or you watch late and the details are the reason you lost, so just try to be connected.

The Cowboys are hoping the footwork will also allow Prescott to extend games more than he’s been asked to do in 2021, an element of Prescott’s ability that McCarthy says coaches have “tried to be smart” with. last year given the long rehabilitation trends of major joint injuries. McCarthy conceded that he “hopes” Prescott, who rushed for six touchdowns in each of his first three pro seasons, will run more this year than last. Prescott averaged more than four yards per carry in each of his first five seasons and at least 17 rushing yards per game.

In 2021, he averaged a low of three yards per carry and 9.1 yards per game, contributing just one rushing touchdown.

The now $40million-a-year quarterback aims to practice as many mobile scenarios as possible in order to prepare his reflexes – while acknowledging that the calculus has changed since his debut.

“Risk versus reward,” Prescott said. “Understanding that some of them are called and why are they called? To fetch the first try. Get a few yards and get out of bounds. And just knowing the importance of everything.

“Coach isn’t going to call it that for me trying to crush people and being stiff-armed. Being smart and understanding that I’m available is what’s best for me.

Prescott coyly played on the fact that the Cowboys’ offense in 2022 would feature his legs more than the group’s offense in 2021, arguing that his fewer runs in 2021 could have resulted more from defensive appearances than from designs. game. He admitted, however, that he would consider the draw for third-and-short and red-zone opportunities ahead.

So how many more fans could see him take off this year? Prescott laughed when asked.

“I mean, I expect to have about 20 carries per game,” he joked.

Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Jori Epstein on Twitter @JoriEpstein

Teresa E. Burton