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Dak Prescott says not playing in preseason allowed him to focus on Week 1

Dak Prescott is one of a handful of starting quarterbacks who will get no snaps in the preseason.

The Cowboys quarterback put a positive spin on it, saying Thursday it has allowed him to get a head start on Week 1. Dallas opens the season at the Giants on Sept. 10.

“Understanding that I wasn’t playing in the preseason a week ago allowed me to move forward and watch some of their past games, our history with them,” Prescott said, via Nick Harris of the team website. “You’ve got to prepare. It’s game one. You want to start off hot and start off the right way, and when you’ve got the time, you’ve got to use it.”

Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen and Aaron Rodgers are among the league’s quarterbacks who have played or will play this preseason, and it’s safe to assume they already are looking ahead at their season openers, too. But Prescott is in a better place than he has been the past few years heading into the season opener.

He has not played in the preseason since 2019. The NFL didn’t play any preseason games in 2020 because of the pandemic, and then Prescott was working his way back from a fractured ankle in the 2021 preseason and a shoulder injury last preseason.

Prescott said he feels “much different” about where he is and where the Cowboys are than a year ago.

“I feel great about where we are,” Prescott said. “Much different than last year. I think we’ve said it all offseason, spring and in training camp, we’re in a much better place right now than we were at this time last year with the installation and the details of everything. It’s about making sure we’re crossing our T’s and dotting our I’s in this next week before we go in.”

The Cowboys have not won a season opener since 2019 when they beat the Giants 35-17. They lost to the Rams in the season opener in 2020 and the Bucs in 2021 and 2022.