FRISCO - The NFL quarterback landscape will look quite different next season as some big-name signal-callers will be wearing different colors in 2022 and beyond. Russell Wilson, Deshaun Watson, Mitchell Trubisky, Matt Ryan, Marcus Mariota, Teddy Bridgewater, Carson Wentz, Case Keenum, Jacoby Brissett, Drew Lock, and Tyrod Taylor will all have new lockers in new stadiums when the season begins.
That's 10 total signal-callers with new teams or almost one-third of NFL organizations with new quarterbacks.
One team that is holding fast with its starter, however, is the Dallas Cowboys. Rayne Dakota Prescott joined the Cowboys in 2016 as the No. 135 overall pick in the fourth round of the NFL Draft. He was immediately thrust into a starting role due to injuries to starting quarterback Tony Romo and backup Kellen Moore. And he's never looked back.
Anyone who watches football knows the quarterback is the most important position on the field and the most difficult role to fill.
We also know the trend in the NFL over the years has been to favor the pass more than ever before, placing even more importance on the position. More than just a strong arm is required to be successful. An NFL quarterback has to be a team leader, vocally and by example, and Prescott has fulfilled every one of those requirements.
And with what teams pay for the position, getting the right person is crucial, especially given the limitations of the salary cap.
Cowboys Dak Prescott Rank on NFL QB Tier List: Slipping Lower?
NFL experts are on the fence about Prescott after he was unable to lead the Cowboys past the 49ers in the Wild Card Round last season
Cowboys & Cardinal: Emmitt Smith Son E.J. Has 'NFL Future'
E.J Smith enters his junior year at Stanford with expectations that only the son of an NFL legend can earn
Cowboys EXCLUSIVE: Jabril Cox Reveals Injury Timetable for Training Camp
"I feel great in my workouts,'' Cox told us. "I'm happy with where I am. I plan on being ready at camp.''
The Athletic wrote in a recent article that there is an unprecedented amount of turnover at the position throughout the league. But the Cowboys are a notable exception:
Among the most notable observations here: Just three quarterbacks, Aaron Rodgers, Dak Prescott and Derek Carr, have been their current team’s starter for five or more seasons.
It’s quite remarkable when placed in historic context. Had a similar list been compiled 10 years ago, there would have been 10 such quarterbacks.
Eight of the 18 quarterbacks selected in the top 10 selections of the NFL Draft since 2015 have already changed teams or are expected to be replaced as starters. In the case of Marcus Mariota, Carson Wentz, Mitchell Trubisky and Josh Rosen, they’ve changed teams on multiple occasions.
Dak Prescott and Tony Romo
Prescott continues to perform well even amid heated discussion by media and fans about his performance and lack of playoff success with just a 1-3 postseason record.
Those same fans can only hope Prescott's performance is good enough the next few years to justify a third contract, as stability at the position is truly a positive thing and he is potentially even more valuable to the Cowboys than most think.
Either the Cowboys are a lot smarter than we think, or the organization has gotten incredibly lucky in finding a starting quarterback in the fourth round six years ago.
And sometimes that's what it takes to win in the NFL - a little bit of luck.