Emmitt Smith: Cowboys 'Uncertain' About Dak Prescott Amid Contract Talks

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistFebruary 6, 2021

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott passes against the Seattle Seahawks during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Elaine Thompson/Associated Press

Legendary Dallas Cowboys running back Emmitt Smith expressed his thoughts Saturday regarding the contract status of quarterback Dak Prescott.

According to Matthew Lenix of InsideTheStar.com, Smith told the SB Nation NFL Show the Cowboys are not 100 percent sold on Prescott being their quarterback of the present and future:

"The only answer I can give is the Cowboys are uncertain whether or not he's the future of the Cowboys. Outside of that, if he was the complete future of the Dallas Cowboys, they would make no bones about giving him a contract.

"I mean at the end of the day, Tony Romo, they was committed to Romo right off the rip. Right off the rip. And he came in and replaced Drew Bledsoe. And I mean, he's not the biggest guy. He's not the most flashiest guy and he's not the fastest guy either. And he had his challenges. But there was a commitment to Tony Romo. There is not a commitment to Dak Prescott."

Prescott played under the franchise tag last season after he and the Cowboys were unable to come to an agreement on a long-term extension, but his 2020 campaign ended after only five games when he suffered a fractured and dislocated ankle.

Before the injury, Prescott was putting up MVP-caliber numbers, completing 68.0 percent of his passes for 1,856 yards, nine touchdowns and four interceptions.

He was also coming off a career year in 2019 that saw him throw for a career-high 4,902 yards and 30 touchdowns.

Although the Cowboys have never made it past the divisional round of the playoffs under Prescott, he is a solid 42-27 in five years as a starter and led them to NFC East titles in both 2016 and 2018.

Also, before this season's injury, Prescott started each of the 69 regular-season games the Cowboys played since he was selected in the fourth round of the 2016 NFL draft out of Mississippi State.

Given his level of production and relatively young age of 27, Prescott seemingly possesses everything a team would be looking for in a franchise quarterback.

It is unclear where the reluctance is coming from on the part of the Cowboys aside from not wanting to handcuff itself cap-wise by paying Prescott top-five-quarterback money.

Smith is no stranger to contract disputes with the Cowboys, as he he went through a couple of them during his career.

As a rookie in 1990, Smith held out until Sept. 4, which was just days before their first game of the regular season.

Then, in 1993, Smith held out for the first two games of the regular season. Smith wanted a raise after leading the NFL in rushing in 1992, and after Dallas lost its first two games, it finally obliged.

Prescott didn't hold out last season, and there hasn't yet been any indication that he will hold out in 2021 should he get franchise-tagged again, but Smith proved in the past that holding out could be an effective way to get a deal done.