ROOKIE’S VALUE ON THE RISE
Sometimes the misfortunes of some lead to great opportunities for others. That’s exactly what happened for Dak Prescott. Before he became a household name in professional and college football, Rayne Dakota Prescott was a virtual unknown. Unless you lived in and around Haughton, Louisiana, Dak Prescott was likely not on your radar. He created his own opportunities in his early years there and capitalized. If not for that, the misfortunes of one particular individual might have lead to a great opportunity for someone else altogether.
The Haughton Buccaneers already had a couple of standout Prescotts on their team. Dak’s brothers, Tad and Jace, helped cultivate the star he is today. Playing full tackle football with the older boys may have toughened him while also earning their respect. His older brothers might be better athletes, but Dak seems to have the “it” factor.
Prescott’s leadership and drive led to a District 1-4A Championship in 2009. The following year, he impressed a Mississippi State University scout during another District Championship game while playing with a torn MCL. In his senior year, Dak would go on to pass for nearly 3000 yards and would rush for nearly 1000 yards.
In Haughton, Dak was often impressive yet humble. Despite this, many prospective colleges would pass him by. It was the scout from MSU, offensive line coach John Hevesy, who recognized Prescott’s “it” factor.
FROM HUMBLE BEGINNINGS TO COLLEGE STANDOUT
Dak’s first big opportunity came in 2013. MSU starting quarterback, Tyler Russell, suffered a concussion. Prescott, then a backup, would then take over as starter. He would help lead the Bulldogs to a Liberty Bowl victory that year while earning that game’s MVP award. In 2014, Prescott would take MSU to their first ever #1 ranking while leading his team to the Orange Bowl. He would also garner many accolades during that season, including being named 2014 SEC Offensive Player of the Week on three occasions. Prescott would also go on to both earn the Conerly Trophy and be named First-Team All-SEC in 2014 and 2015. Not to be outdone by his athletic skill, he would also excel in academics. Prescott did, in fact, earn a spot on the SEC Fall Academic Honor Roll three consecutive years.
The list of accomplishments by Dak Prescott in his college years alone is extensive. In fact, he currently holds a total of 38 records at MSU. One could draw the conclusion that his success at MSU would boil down to two things; opportunity and “it.” Without those factors, Dak may still be a humble, relatively unknown name.
STARS ALIGNED FOR DAK PRESCOTT
Prescott would somehow manage to fly under the radar for much of the pro football draft in 2016. His accomplishments at Haughton and Mississippi did not catch the eye of teams early on. However, the Dallas Cowboys would select Dak in the fourth round to develop him as a backup to starting quarterback Tony Romo. Battling for the backup position, Prescott would not waste his opportunities. During a preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks, Tony Romo would suffer a significant injury. Due to his impressive preseason play and Romo’s unfortunate injury, Dak Prescott was named starting quarterback to begin the Cowboys’ 2016 season.
Under Dak Prescott, the Cowboys would finish the season 13-3 and would become NFC East Champions. They would also secure home field advantage for the playoffs. The tandem of Prescott and first round draft pick, Ezekiel Elliot, seemed nearly unstoppable. Dallas quickly became favorites to win the NFC Championship and Super Bowl LI. In his rookie season, Dak would earn a spot in the 2016 Pro Bowl and on the PFWA All-Rookie Team. Prescott would also win the 2016 Pepsi Rookie of the Year award, while the NFL would honor him with the Offensive Rookie of the Year.
DAK PRESCOTT, TRADING CARD STAR
It’s not yet clear what the future holds for Dak Prescott. If his past is any indication, one could assume many will continue to underestimate him and he will continue to shine. One thing is clear, however. His trading cards are hot right now. That was not the case to start the football trading card collecting season. Many collectors would instead chase Ezekiel Elliot over Prescott. However, Dak’s success on the field would quickly translate to his popularity on cardboard.
Prescott’s ability to take over the team and lead them to the playoffs currently make his trading cards some of the most valuable. His humble beginnings make his rise in trading card popularity all the more impressive. Prescott’s “it” factor and ability to capitalize on opportunity, however, make his popularity in trading cards seem inevitable.