Friday, August 5, 2022

Cowboys predict they will cut the former touted quarterback

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Dak Prescott has cemented his status as the Dallas Cowboys’ longtime QB1, but backup competition is ongoing behind the face of the franchise. The Cowboys also have Cooper Rush, Will Grier and Ben DiNucci fighting for a roster spot during training camp.

The Cowboys clearly won’t be able to have four quarterbacks on the active roster, and it remains to be seen if Dallas will retain three signal callers. Heading into training camp, former Cowboys scout Bryan Broaddus and team insider Bobby Belt made their predictions for the final 53-man roster. Belt believes Grier won’t make the final lineup as he predicts the Cowboys will only keep two quarterbacks: Prescott and DiNucci.

“I think I’ll start with the quarterbacks [the Cowboys only keep] Cooper Rush and Dak Prescott,” Belt explained on a July 26 episode of the Love of the Star podcast. “Well, they carried Will Grier a few times last year. They had three at once, and Mike McCarthy is a quarterback guy.

“But I think there will only be a few areas [positions where cuts need to be made], especially assuming you need to hold Michael Gallup for a few weeks without him being on PUP. You just have to make a sacrifice somewhere, and that’s probably the quarterback. Just my own opinion.”

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To be clear, Belt’s prediction was made prior to the start of training camp and a strong preseason from Grier could make for a difficult decision in Dallas. The Cowboys could release both Grier and DiNucci only to have one of the quarterbacks re-sign to practice squad if they are not claimed by another team via waivers.

“I think in the league teams have appreciated having the flexibility to do that [keep veterans on the practice squad during COVID]’ replied Broaddus. “Ben DiNucci, Will Grier, one of these guys will end up on your practice team, probably as your third guy.”

So far, all indications are that Grier is doing everything in his power to put pressure on the Cowboys regarding his future. Dallas 97.1 the Eagle’s Jeff Cavanaugh noted that Grier had a “fixed camp”. The WFAA’s Mike Leslie outlined why Rush went into training camp with the upper hand, while adding that Grier is running to the backup spot.

“Cooper Rush, who won a game for the Cowboys on spot duty last year, is an awfully large feather in his cap and makes it hard to topple him as the Cowboys’ backup quarterback.” Leslie tweeted on July 29th. “But Will Grier did some nice things early on at this camp that make him an intriguing guy to watch.”

During his final collegiate season in West Virginia, Pro Football Focus predicted that Grier would be selected in the first round of the 2019 NFL draft. Ultimately, the Panthers drafted Grier with the No. 100 overall pick in the third round.

The Cowboys successfully called Grier out of waivers on September 1, 2021 after he was released by the Panthers. Heading into the draft, The Athletic’s Dane Brugler had Grier as his No. 5 quarterback, believing the signal caller had enough tools to eventually compete for a starting job.

“Overall, Grier has trouble reading/sensing pressure and his inconsistent decision making is a concern, but he’s a natural rhythm passer and once he finds that rhythm he can be deadly and pose as a backup NFL quarterback who.” it’s worth fighting for a career,” Brugler wrote in his 2019 preliminary draft guide.

Rush has plenty of momentum after guiding the Cowboys to an Oct. 31 win last season when Prescott was out with a calf injury. Time will tell if Grier’s game during training camp will be enough to secure the backup spot behind Prescott.

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