Ben DiNucci's Fantasy Outlook with Cowboys After Andy Dalton's Injury

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistOctober 25, 2020

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Ben DiNucci (7) looks on after handing the ball off during an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Monday, Oct. 19, 2020, in Arlington, Texas. Arizona won 38-10. (AP Photo/Brandon Wade)
Brandon Wade/Associated Press

The Dallas Cowboys are down to their third quarterback after Andy Dalton suffered a brutal hit in Sunday's game against the Washington Football Team. With Dak Prescott already out for the season, it means rookie Ben DiNucci will run the offense for the time being.

Though he was mostly unknown entering the day, the seventh-round pick showcased his skill with his first career NFL pass:

The Checkdown @thecheckdown

Ben DiNucci with a dime for his first career NFL completion 🎯 @B_DiNucci6 @dallascowboys πŸ“Ί #DALvsWAS on FOX https://t.co/UewAuOsx8L

It's enough to gain the attention of fantasy football managers, especially those desperate for a quarterback. In an offense that was one of the best in the NFL with Prescott under center, there is at least some upside for the rookie.

Still, it's likely best to keep DiNucci on the waiver wire until you see more from the James Madison product.

The Cowboys have elite playmakers in Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb, Michael Gallup and Ezekiel Elliott, which helped the squad score over 30 points in four of the first five games. The squad entered Week 7 leading the NFL in yards from scrimmage.

However, the offensive line isn't what it once was with Zack Martin, La'el Collins and Joe Looney all injured.

There have been fewer running lanes for Elliott, while there is less time for passing plays to develop. Dalton was sacked three times in the Week 6 loss to the Arizona Cardinals and three more times before coming out of the game Sunday.

DiNucci was sacked twice in his first five plays after taking over.

The 23-year-old is also trying to make the leap from FCS to the NFL, which will likely make it even tougher for him to succeed this season.

There is still potential for the player who starred at James Madison. The 6'3", 209-pound Atlanta native totaled 3,441 passing yards and 29 touchdowns last season, adding 569 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns. He was named the Colonial Athletic Association Offensive Player of the Year and led the Dukes to the FCS title game, where they lost to North Dakota State.

For those in two-quarterback leagues, there is always value in a starting QB.

However, fantasy managers shouldn't expect anywhere near Prescott-level numbers from the new man under center.