Cowboys QB Cooper Rush had a clean game on Saturday against the Texans, finishing 10-12 for 97 yards, two touchdowns, and a 139.9 passer rating.
“I thought Cooper did a really good job managing the game,” Cowboys HC Mike McCarthy said, via The Athletic. “Kept us in clean plays, handled the checks and alerts very well, and obviously led the team on two drives. So I thought Cooper had a nice quarter and a half of work.”
Rush might have set himself apart in the competition for the No. 2 quarterback job. Cowboys QB Garrett Gilbert didn’t do much on Saturday to help his stock, as he got his feet tangled with OG Zack Martin on his first drop-back and later waited too long to throw and allowed a strip-sack by Texans DE Jacob Martin.
“We wanted to give (Rush and Gilbert) more of a balanced opportunity,” McCarthy said, “and Garrett’s had more opportunities (compared) to Cooper going into the game, so the goal was to give Cooper a little more here. Garrett had the turnover and didn’t have the conversion on the second series, so it was obviously not his best night.”
McCarthy also pointed out that QB Ben DiNucci needed to have a better performance on Saturday where he threw three interceptions, the first resulting in a pick-six.
“I think no one is more disappointed than he is,” McCarthy said. “He knows the opportunity that he had this evening and I think he did a good job using his feet, and he needs to use his feet more. He’s an excellent athlete. At the end of the day, turnovers are a huge part of being successful in this league. You have to take care of the ball. With that, we’ll evaluate the decisions, the throws, but he needs to play much better than that.”
Fourth-round LB Jabril Cox has also begun to carve out a role on the Cowboys defensive unit, although McCarthy said he needs to see more out of Cox, particularly on special teams.
“I think he’s kind of on a normal plane for a young guy,” McCarthy said. “He picks it up really clean. His introduction to pro football was a little bumpy, with the Hall of Fame Game when we first got in there, and I thought he responded very well. I think he’s definitely done that the last two weeks. He made a really good play out in space (Saturday night) and definitely you could see his range and his instincts, his awareness. I think he’s doing a nice job. He needs to do more on special teams, obviously that’s where the young guys make their first impact.”
- Cowboys OC Kellen Moore said Dak Prescott (shoulder) has no throwing limitations: “I thought he looked great (yesterday). We’re fired up. We’re not looking at anything from a limitation standpoint.” (Jon Machota)
- Per the Athletic’s Zach Berman, Eagles fifth-round RB Kenneth Gainwell looks like he’ll have a role as a third-down back in clear pass situations, behind starting RB Miles Sanders: “He probably has the best hands in the room. I’m not afraid to say that. He has very natural hands. He practices without gloves, just to make it easier on him when he does put gloves on. And I like that.”
- Berman adds 2020 sixth-round WR Quez Watkins has gone from being on the bubble at the start of camp to a potential Week 1 starter as a slot receiver.
- At tight end, the Eagles have an interesting situation. Assuming they don’t trade Zach Ertz, Berman writes they ideally would only have one more roster spot to dedicate to the position. Veteran Richard Rodgers was the favorite but undrafted rookie Jack Stoll has made a strong push in recent weeks and might not make it through waivers.
- Berman adds the Eagles would have to carry Tyree Jackson on their initial 53-man roster to be able to put him on injured reserve and bring him back, so that’s five tight ends with a strong case to be on the roster.
- Philadelphia could release Rodgers, as he’s a vested veteran and not subject to waivers. It would also prevent his full salary from becoming guaranteed.
- NJ.com’s Zack Rosenblatt reports Giants CB Adoree’ Jackson sustained just a minor ankle sprain on Wednesday and could return to practice at some point next week.