Friday, July 1, 2022 Jul 1, 2022
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I Googled Cooper Rush, Dak Prescott’s Backup, So You Don’t Have To

All signs seem to be pointing toward him starting on Sunday night, and anyone who claims to know what that means is lying. So: internet research time!
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Don't know who Cooper Rush is? It's OK, you're not alone. Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

See that guy in the back of the photo? The one studying Dak Prescott’s movements from afar, cocooned in the knowledge that there’s almost no way he’ll play any snaps of importance this year as a Dallas Cowboy? His name is Cooper Rush, and he might be dead-ass wrong.

You could not blame Cooper Rush—stellar name, by the way—if he’d planned on riding pine all season long. After all, he turns 28 years old next month and has completed exactly one (1) pass in an NFL game on three attempts for a paltry two yards. Four of his five NFL seasons have been spent in Dallas, which means he is very well acquainted with his lot in the NFL being a dutiful backup who watches Prescott do his thing.

Except, late yesterday afternoon, the party line on Prescott’s right calf strain shifted from one of widespread optimism that he’d be available for Sunday night’s game against Minnesota to something considerably more restrained, with Prescott telling the media that while “I could go out there and play today if I could, knowing that this is a long journey and a long season, I don’t necessarily know if this is fully my decision.” Prescott expects the final decision on his availability to be made on Saturday, but those do not sound the words of a man expecting to play.

Vegas apparently agrees: the betting line on Sunday’s game swung four and a half points yesterday, shifting Dallas from a two-point favorite to a two-and-a-half point underdog. Mike McCarthy’s words on Friday morning—“It’s more than just one game. We’re obviously in our seventh game, so there is a ton of football left to play.”—seem to be pointing in the same direction: it just might be Cooper Rush time.

And Cooper Rush time means … well, I have no idea what that means. I know, I know, my job is ostensibly to provide you with insight into these situations, but anyone who claims they have real knowledge about what’s liable to happen when a guy who threw three passes in 2017 gets tossed into a Sunday night NFL game on the road is absolutely full of it. To his credit, Rush rewrote records at the high school (Lansing, Michigan’s Lansing Catholic High School) and collegiate (Central Michigan) levels, but so have plenty of other NFL players who also have faced real game action since “Despacito” dominated the radio. The Cowboys are venturing deep into the unknown if he’s starting.

I do not want you to walk away empty-handed, however, so in lieu of feigning analysis about the indecipherable, I looked up some fun facts to save you the requisite Google searching to learn about who you might invest your Halloween night watching run the Cowboys’ offense.

Cooper Rush is…

  • From Michigan, a very cold place, which probably can’t hurt considering the low in Minneapolis on Sunday is 31 degrees.
  • A big Taylor Swift stan:

  • Judging by his retweets, also a big LeBron stan, which feels less endearing.
  • Claims he grew his hand size a half-inch by watching YouTube videos in order to game the NFL combine, which I wholeheartedly approve of because the NFL combine is incredibly stupid.
  • Majored in actuarial science, which is far too dull for a man named Cooper Rush.
  • You can buy a signed photo of him on eBay for $19, but only one, because two more have sold. Bargain? Chances are you’ll be able to decide that for yourself on Sunday.

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