Dak Prescott 'definitely ready' for Week 1 vs. Bucs after offseason mending ankle, shoulder injuries

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Dak Prescott hasn't played a football game since suffering a compound fracture of his right ankle in Week 5 last season.

After an offseason that included two surgeries and rigorous rehab, he was sidelined from throwing in training camp with a latissimus strain in his right shoulder. He didn't play in the preseason.

But he has booked some practices sessions and workouts in recent days as the Cowboys prepare for their season opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday. 

“I’m ready,” Prescott told reporters in Frisco on Friday. “I’m definitely ready. I’m excited. I’ve put in a lot of work to get to this point.

“Whether it was months ago just rehabbing the ankle to the last few months, keeping the feet working while letting my arm rest. There’s so much work that I’ve put in. I’m just excited to get out there and be a part of a full game."

Aug 21, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) throws prior to the game against the Houston Texans at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
Dak Prescott says he's ready to play after being sidelined with injuries. (Matthew Emmons/Reuters)

High hopes for Cowboys offense

With Prescott back and second-year receiver CeeDee Lamb poised for a breakout alongside four-time Pro Bowler Amari Cooper, there's plenty of buzz around the Cowboys offense. Prescott averaged an astounding 371.2 passing yards per game in the five games he played last year. 

But it all depends on Prescott actually being healthy, of course. Ezekiel Elliott was a shell of himself with Andy Dalton leading the offense last season. The Cowboys are counting on Prescott's presence opening up opportunities for the 26-year-old running back's return to form. 

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Offensive coordinator Kellen Moore gave Prescott a glowing report in late August after his throwing restrictions were lifted.

"I think we all love where he's at," Moore said on Aug. 26. "Obviously, you'd love to have these opportunities to practice in training camp, to have played last year more than he ended up playing.

“But we're ready to just go play football, I think everyone is. He's worked his tail off, done everything he could possibly do, and we're just going to go for it."

All of this is just chatter at this point. Reality hits Thursday night in the form of the Super Bowl champs and a pass rush that harassed Patrick Mahomes into looking human in the Super Bowl. There are few tougher tests to determine just how ready Prescott is. 

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