NFC Notes: Cowboys, Eagles, Dallas Goedert, Giants, Washington


Cowboys QB Dak Prescott is looking forward to getting back on the field on Thursday.

“I mean, I’m excited for when that moment comes, but I wouldn’t say I’m eager,” Prescott said, via Jon Machota. “I think it’d be great to come out of that game not touching the ground, but how realistic is that? Obviously, it doesn’t sound very realistic. But I’m just excited for that moment, just to get it out of the way, after 11 months without being hit. I’m just excited for everything this game entails, from warmups, to pregame, to the first whistle to the last, and everything in between.”

Prescott added he doesn’t think there will be much rust.

“Obviously, I have high expectations for myself,” Prescott said. “I plan to come out starting fast. I’ve said before, I don’t necessarily want the numbers that I had that early because we weren’t winning games and we weren’t being competitive early, and that’s why some of those numbers came about. I plan to come out better than I was last year, to be honest. That’s just the work that I’ve put in going all the way back to February when I got back on the field. I’m excited for it.”

Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott said G Zack Martin is the team’s best player and him being out for Week 1 is a huge loss.

“Zack’s our best player on our offense. I mean most runs, they coming back behind him,” Elliott said, via Todd Archer. “It’s disappointing but you can’t harp on it, can’t let it be more than what it is. I mean, definitely going to miss him, definitely wish he was out there, but we still have a game to go play and we got to try and get the job done.”


  • Per the Athletic’s Zach Berman, one of the focuses for Eagles OT Jordan Mailata was preparing as if he was a starting player rather than focusing on the competition for the starting job at left tackle, which he ultimately won. 
  • Mailata added he wants to get to a point where his past as a rugby player isn’t used as an excuse when he makes a mistake. He just wants to be a great offensive tackle: “I was branding myself as a football player because I believed it. I’m going to keep doing that until I scrub that from my history.” 
  • Eagles S Rodney McLeod avoided landing on the PUP list to start the season. He just now has returned to individual drills so Week 1 might be a stretch but he’s aiming to get back on the field soon, with the goal of feeling like himself shortly after: “Early on — hopefully not — but I might be a step short. It’s just seeing yourself making those plays again, and I think naturally the confidence comes with that. Once those things happen where how I’m feeling and how I’m playing aligns with each other, I’ll feel fine.” 
  • Berman notes the Eagles should have a hefy dose of RPO plays to benefit QB Jalen Hurts‘ strengths. Eagles HC Nick Sirianni has some familiarity with them from his time with the Colts but he’ll lean on passing game coordinator Kevin Patullo and QB coach Brian Johnson and their experience from college as well: “Just see how much it benefits your offense because you’re able to read a player instead of block a player, right? That’s a great thing to be able to do, like ‘Hey, I don’t have to block him. What did he do? Did he take a drop? All right, good, I’m handing it off. Did he knife it? Good, I’m pulling it and taking it and throwing the ball.’ … It’s a piece of the puzzle of what we do, and we’re just continuing to grow in it.”
  • Eagles TE Dallas Goedert said he thought he would have a contract extension done by now, but “the team decided to go in a different way.” (Berman)
  • Goedert added he’s not worried about sharing reps with TE Zach Ertz: “Honestly, it gives more problems to the defense than it does myself. All I’ve ever really known is playing with Zach.” (Berman)
  • Sirianni said it could be a few weeks before OL Jack Driscoll is ready to return from a pec strain. (Jeff McLane)


  • NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport reports the Giants are planning to have RB Saquon Barkley fully cleared for Sunday vs. Denver. 
  • Rapoport also reports TE Evan Engram is unlikely to play on Sunday, even though the Giants will give him the entire week to prove he is ready.
  • Giants HC Joe Judge defended OT Andrew Thomas amid a rough training camp: “It’s funny, sometimes the assessments on the outside don’t really have the entire picture at hand in understanding how all the other 10 pieces fit together. You have to take that with a grain of salt.” (Tom Rock)


  • Washington WR Curtis Samuel said he doesn’t want to rush back and re-injure himself: “It’s definitely been a tough road. … My mindset is when I’m out there, I want to stay out there.” (Nicki Jhabvala)
  • Samuel didn’t want to say how ready he is to play: “I mean, it’s game week. I’m not about to give all them tips. But I’m feeling good.” (Jhabvala)

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