It’s a great season to be a rookie quarterback.
The Philadelphia Eagles traded Sam Bradford to the Vikings last week and suddenly Carson Wentz was in the pocket. Due to Tom Brady‘s four-game deflategate suspension, Jimmy Garoppolo is stepping into the quarterback spotlight, and Tony Romo‘s preseason injury has Dak Prescott at the helm of the Cowboys offense.
But how did the rookies perform in their first games under the bright lights? Check out our performance review below:
Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys
Prescott was the starting quarterback for the Mississippi State Bulldogs and was chosen at the 135th pick by the Cowboys during the 2016 NFL Draft. He was originally set to play third string behind Romo and Kellen Moore. Moore broke his leg in August and Romo injured his back and won’t be back for at least another two months.
The 23-year-old stepped up and performed extremely well despite losing 20-19 to the New York Giants. He didn’t let the adversity of the Giants defense, which includes running back Ezekiel Elliott, stop him from having solid passing game. The rookie’s clock-management skills were pretty good, but were ruined when Terrance Williams didn’t run out-of-bounds to beat the clock. But the poise was there, and with a bit more experience, Prescott is looking like a steal in this year’s draft class.
Carson Wentz, Philadelphia Eagles
The Eagles knew what they were doing when they traded veteran QB Bradford to the Vikings, even if no one else understood it. Why get rid of a decent veteran passer for a wide-eyed rookie? Because he’s got tons of potential, that’s why. Wentz knew people doubted his capabilities, but he showed out in his NFL debut by destroying the Cleveland Browns 29-10 on Sunday.
Though the 23-year-old had to play right away, he’s already shown he has patience. He waited in the pocket to find the best receiver and didn’t always run just to get a few yards. For a kid who only received eight days’ notice and had no turnovers in his first game says something. The Eagles front office definitely knew what they were doing with that bold trade.
Jimmy Garoppolo, New England Patriots
While NFL’s golden boy Brady is serving a four-game suspension for his alleged involvement in deflategate, Garoppolo has gotten the chance of a lifetime to play with one of the best offenses in the league. Only, the 24-year-old doesn’t have Brady’s secret weapon and mountain of a man as backup, Rob Gronkowski, who’s out with a hamstring injury.
He was also going up against last year’s MVP award candidate Carson Palmer and his Cardinals. Still, Garoppolo came out on top as his depleted Patriots beat the Cardinals 23-21. General manager Bill Belichick and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels knew the Cardinals ran a man-to-man defensive and used Jimmy perfectly in that situation. Could Garoppolo be the replacement for the aging, 39-year-old Brady?
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