ARLINGTON, Texas — Dak Prescott was hospitalized with a right ankle compound fracture and dislocation suffered on a third-quarter run against the New York Giants on Sunday.
Prescott was forced to leave the game on a cart and in tears. He was taken to an area hospital where he was set to undergo surgery on the ankle Sunday night.
Prescott was hurt with 6 minutes, 33 seconds to play in the third quarter while being tackled by Giants defensive back Logan Ryan after a 9-yard run.
AT&T Stadium was hushed as Prescott was examined by Cowboys’ medical personnel for several minutes before leaving on the cart. Players from both teams, as well as former Cowboys head coach and current Giants offensive coordinator Jason Garrett, consoled Prescott as he left to a big cheer. He raised his right hand in acknowledgement.
Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones was shown standing in his suite, but he appeared to head down to the locker room to check on the quarterback. Dallas announced the extent of the injury and the surgery after the game.
Andy Dalton replaced Prescott and helped finish off a scoring drive that ended with Ezekiel Elliott’s second touchdown of the game to give Dallas a 31-23 lead. The Cowboys ended up winning 37-34 on a last-second Greg Zuerlein field goal set up on a Dalton-to-Michael Gallup 38-yard pass.
Dalton finished 9-of-11 for 111 yards.
“It sucks. Yeah it sucks,” Elliott said after the game. “I know we won; it just sucks to lose Dak, our leader. And I was talking to the guys and it’s going to take all of us. It’s going to take all of us to fill that void that we’re going to be missing from 4. Just gotta go out there and play for him.”
Prescott was off to a record-setting start to the season, with three consecutive games passing for at least 450 yards. He entered the week with 1,690 passing yards, an NFL best and the most by a Cowboys quarterback through four games in team history.
While the immediate concern is Prescott’s health, the quarterback’s future also is part of the equation.
He is playing on a one-year franchise tag that is worth $31.4 million as he and the team were unable to reach an agreement on a long-term deal. The Cowboys offered Prescott, 27, a five-year deal worth $34.5 million per season and more than $100 million guaranteed, but he opted to play this season on the tag, hoping for larger commitment.
Prescott has been remarkably durable in his career. He had not missed a start (69) in his career and missed just two snaps this season as he was getting evaluated for a potential concussion against the Atlanta Falcons. He played the final two games of last season with a right shoulder injury that limited his mobility.
According to Elias Sports Bureau, Prescott’s 69 consecutive starts is the sixth-longest streak from the start of a rookie season since the NFL-AFL merger in 1970. Only Tom Brady and Russell Wilson have won more games than Prescott’s 41 since 2016.
Prescott’s injury adds to a growing list for the Cowboys.
Defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, who signed a three-year, $18 million deal as a free agent, suffered a season-ending torn quadriceps on the first day of padded practices in the summer.
The Cowboys (2-3) either have or have had nine starters or significant contributors on injured reserve this season, including Pro Bowl left tackle Tyron Smith (neck), Sean Lee (sports hernia/pelvis), Leighton Vander Esch (collarbone), La’el Collins (hip), Blake Jarwin (knee), Chidobe Awuzie (hamstring), Anthony Brown (ribs), Joe Looney (knee) and Cameron Erving (knee).
Stephen A. Smith reacts to Dak Prescott’s ankle injury vs. the Giants and reminds us why he wants the Cowboys to pay him.
The Cowboys signed Dalton, 32, to a free agent deal worth $3 million guaranteed and up to $7 million after a nine-year run as the Cincinnati Bengals’ starting quarterback. Dalton took the Bengals to the playoffs four times but was unable to win a postseason game.
The previous time the Cowboys lost their franchise quarterback to injury in-game came in 2015, when Tony Romo suffered a re-break of his right collarbone against the Carolina Panthers on Nov. 26, 2015. Romo suffered the initial break in a Week 2 win against the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Cowboys finished that season with a 4-12 record, starting four different quarterbacks — Romo, Brandon Weeden, Matt Cassel and Kellen Moore.
Romo was on the national call for CBS for Sunday’s game.
In 2018, Dallas wide receiver Allen Hurns suffered a dislocated ankle in a wild-card playoff game against the Seattle Seahawks not far from where Prescott was injured.