The Dallas Cowboys looked to be in quite the bind when they lost quarterback, Dak Prescott. However, there was some sense of confidence in Cooper Rush, who won his only start last season when Prescott was sidelined with a strained calf.
Rush rose to the occasion in Week 2 by leading the Cowboys to a victory against the Cincinnati Bengals. On Monday night, Rush made his third career start in MetLife Stadium as the Cowboys took on the New York Giants, and as he did twice before, Rush came through with another solid performance to move the Cowboys to 2-1 on the season.
In doing so, Rush made a little NFL history. He became the second undrafted quarterback in league history to win the first three starts of his career and throw for over 750 yards, joining Hall of Famer Kurt Warmer who did so in 1999.
That wasn’t the only exclusive club Rush became a part of on Monday night. He joined Hall of Famer Roger Staubach and former Cowboys’ head coach Jason Garrett as the only quarterbacks in team history to win their first three starts.
It’s not just about the fact that Rush has won all of his starts, it’s how he’s done it. Against the Minnesota Vikings a season ago, Rush led Dallas on a 75-yard game-winning drive with 51 seconds left that was capped off by a touchdown throw to former Cowboys receiver Amari Cooper. Against the Bengals, Rush set up Brett Maher’s field goal from 33 yards out for the Cowboys’ first win of 2022 as time expired.
Monday night was a little different. After Ezekiel Elliott’s touchdown run tied the game at 13, Rush and wide receiver CeeDee Lamb put on a clinic on the next drive. Rush found Lamb for a crucial fourth down conversion to the Giants’ 37. Two plays later, he connected with Lamb for 26 yards, and they hooked up again on the next play as Lamb made a spectacular one-handed catch for his first touchdown of the season, and the Cowboys never relinquished the lead from that point.
The score by Lamb was the play that got the glory, but it was Rush finding him on fourth down that was the moment of the game. If unsuccessful, the Giants would have had the ball near midfield with a chance to regain the lead deep into the fourth quarter.
Rush has done exactly what the Cowboys needed him to do. He’s kept them afloat until Prescott’s return, which probably won’t be for a few more weeks.
Regardless of what anyone thinks he can or can’t do, Rush has shown he’s a very capable backup quarterback and has the resolve to perform when things get tight.
Feature image via Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports