After fracturing the thumb on his throwing hand late in the fourth quarter of Sunday night’s loss to Tampa Bay, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott underwent surgery on Monday. He was initially expected to miss at least half of the 2022 regular season, however, comments by team owner Jerry Jones on Tuesday were far more optimistic.
Speaking on a local Dallas radio show, Jones said the Cowboys would not be placing Prescott on injured reserve and the quarterback could return much sooner than originally thought. The comments leave the door open for the QB to return sometime in the next four weeks. Jones made it clear the Cowboys would have placed Prescott on IR if they still felt he was likely to miss more than four weeks.
Prescott was hit by the Buccaneers’ Shaquil Barrett after releasing a short pass to Ezekiel Elliott on the Cowboys’ final drive of Sunday’s game. He exited with just under six minutes to play, heading to the tunnel with members of the Cowboys’ training staff.
“I thought I jammed it. I’ve hit my hand on helmets or bodies a lot in my career and never really had anything, maybe a jammed finger here, and actually thought that’s what it was. Just the next play I realized I couldn’t grip the ball,” Prescott said in his postgame press conference. “I was told it was much cleaner than it could have been.”
“It’s very disappointing, but injuries happen. Can’t necessarily control it, just unfortunate. Obviously going to miss some time, not be there for my team, and that’s what hurts more than anything, especially after the start that we just put out there, wanting to be able to respond,” Prescott continued.
Prescott had gone 14-of-29 for 134 yards with 1 interception prior to leaving Sunday’s game. He led the Cowboys to a field goal on the game’s opening drive but did not lead the Dallas offense inside the Tampa 40-yard line after that series.
The seventh-year quarterback was coming off a resurgent 2021 season, where he was the Comeback Player of the Year runner-up after throwing for 4,449 yards and 37 touchdowns in 16 games, leading Dallas to a 12-5 record and NFC East title the year after a severe ankle injury ended his 2020 season after just five games. Dallas had signed him to a four-year, $160 million contract prior to the start of that season.
“I’ll do what I’ve always done anytime adversity comes: Take it on head-first and I’ll give my best, and I’m sure I’ll come out of this thing better,” Prescott said.
Prescott was one of several injuries the Cowboys sustained on Sunday night. Guard Connor McGovern left less than five minutes into the game and was later diagnosed with a high ankle sprain that could shelve him alongside Prescott for several weeks. Safety and defensive captain Jayron Kearse also left the stadium on crutches and will be evaluated on Monday.