Dak Prescott finds fresh motivation in “slump” talk

On Tuesday, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones resisted describing the recent performances of quarterback Dan Prescott as a “slump,” but Jones also called the use of the term fair.

For Prescott, the word is misplaced — and it also gives him some motivation.

“I do realize I’m not playing my best ball,” Prescott told reporters on Thursday, via Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News. “I haven’t been playing it. I’ve made some poor decisions, I guess you could say. But that’s kind of part of it. I wouldn’t say it is ‘slump’ material. But I’m definitely not up to my standard and expectations.”

Still, he finds fuel in the criticism of his play.

“I’ve been doubted my whole life,” Prescott said. “Been said I couldn’t do this, I can’t do that. So in a sense, I’m actually glad it’s kind of come back. I’m glad that that’s the way the people feel and there’s a lot of that being said right now.”

There’s definitely a lot of it being said. And for good reason. He was spectacular through Week Six, when he suffered a calf injury at the tail end of the overtime win over the Patriots. He had 16 touchdown passes and four interceptions in those first six games. In six games since returning, he’s thrown eight touchdown passes and six interceptions.

Prescott disputes the idea that he’s anything less than 100 percent physically. Regardless, he’s not as good as he was before the injury. He’s still very good, but the last six games clearly weren’t as good as the first six.