With six games to go in the regular season, tight end Jason Witten is not surprised by the MVP-like performance from Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott.
The All-Pro and future Hall of Famer had an idea of what he was getting himself into this season after leaving the Monday Night Football broadcast booth for the team that drafted him in the third round in 2003. So far, everything is going as he had foreseen back in February.
"I knew fairly early when I came back that this is a different quarterback than I played with in 2017, and I shared that with you guys," Witten told reporters Tuesday at the Salvation Army Carr P. Collins Social Service Center as the club served early Thanksgiving meals to clients for the 16th straight year.
"And I think in every way possible, you evolve as a quarterback," Witten said. "He's done that."
Prescott is tied with Kirk Cousins for the second-most touchdown passes in the NFL with 21, leads the league with 3,221 yards, has the highest yards per pass attempt with 8.8, and the eighth-best passer rating overall at 104.1.
It's not that Prescott hasn't led the NFL in passing statistics before, it's that certain aspects of his game have developed throughout his fourth professional season.
"All the intangibles he's always had, but the anticipation, velocity, communication, just playing at a high level," Witten said. "And his weapons, his receivers are on the same page with him. Randall (Cobb) coming in, Michael (Gallup) is only in his second year. Obviously Amari (Cooper) [has] been here for over a year. So, he's playing at a high level."
If Witten has one criticism of the offense led by Prescott, it is that the unit gets off to slow starts. With a 6-4 record, some of the losses are due to the Cowboys falling down 14-0, as they did in Week 5 versus the Green Bay Packers and Week 10 versus the Minnesota Vikings.
"We've got to find ways to do it earlier in games and I think that's going to allow us to win more games," Witten said. "[Offensive coordinator] Kellen (Moore) has done a great job. Everybody's playing a high level. There's certainly areas for us to clean up, but I like the way we're playing right now."
The Cowboys will need to clean up their issues as they face the New England Patriots Sunday afternoon at 3:25 p.m. CT at Gillette Stadium. The 9-1 Patriots are the cream of the AFC while Dallas is fourth place in the NFC, but first in the NFC East. Along with more disciplined play, the Cowboys will also need another MVP effort from Prescott.
Do you think Jason Witten can help Dak Prescott continue his pace of leading the league in passing? Share your thoughts on the passing attack with Mark on Twitter @therealmarklane.