PFT’s 2021 comeback player of the year: Dak Prescott

Dallas Cowboys v New Orleans Saints
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There was one — and only one — candidate for the 2020 comeback player of the year. Alex Smith won the award the day he made Washington’s 53-player roster, which came 22 months after a horrific leg injury that would require 17 surgeries.

The 2021 comeback player of the year has two deserving candidates. Dak Prescott or Joe Burrow? Joe Burrow or Dak Prescott?

Take your pick. Flip a coin.

Prescott wins PFT’s comeback player of the year award with more touchdowns (37 to 34) than Burrow, fewer interceptions (10 to 14) than Burrow and more wins (11 to 10) than Burrow for the NFL’s No. 1 offense. But Burrow’s comeback was no less impressive.

Prescott needed immediate surgery on a dislocated and compound fracture of his right ankle in Week 5 last season. He required a second surgery in December.

This season, he broke Tony Romo’s team record for touchdown passes and led the Cowboys to the NFC East title.

Burrow tore the ACL and MCL in his left knee in Week 10 of his rookie season. He rebounded to lead the league in completion percentage (70.4) and yards per attempt (8.9) while passing for 4,611 yards as the Bengals won their first division title since 2015.

So while Smith was the unanimous winner last year, Prescott and Burrow both deserve it this year. But only one can win it, so after much debate, Prescott is our choice.

25 responses to “PFT’s 2021 comeback player of the year: Dak Prescott

  1. Nick Bosa is a top 5 pass rusher in the the league. Top 5 in sacks, TFL, and QB pressures. He should at least get a mention. But it seems like this award was automatically given to Dak before the year even started.

  2. This has been a burr in my shorts for years and years, giving the Comeback Player of the Year Award strictly because the player was injured the year before. The worst example of this was Tom Brady getting the award in 2009 after he blew out his knee in the first game of 2008. The award should go to the player who came back from a subpar year … on the field, not from a golf cart.

  3. The Cowboys have always been about regular season awards and this further explains why Prescott stayed in the game until he threw 5 TDs against mostly open WRs being covered by 3rd stringers.

    Dak – 25% of his TD passes came in 2 games. When he beat up on a covid ravaged redskins team and when the Eagles rested 19 of 22 starters in the final game of the season. A game which the Cowboys played their starters long after the game was no longer in doubt.

    Joe Burrow – Takes a perennial doormat of a team to the playoffs, throwing for 971 yards and 8 TDs the final 2 games of the season to secure their division including a 4 TD/446 yd performance over the defending AFC champions.

    Dak winning an award is like saying Carson Wentz is a great QB based on his 2021 season stats. Anyone watching the games knows Wentz wasn’t as good as his stats and neither is Dak.

  4. Joe Burrow carried his team from the bottom of the NFL to dominating wins, the AFCN and the playoffs all while smashing record after record. He should have gotten the award. Prescott returned to a stacked but underperforming 8-8 team and was propelled to 3 wins above their average by his teammates carrying his weight. We know why Prescott “won” the award, but Burrow earned it.

  5. I’m a bit of a homer here and say Burrow only because he came back from that horrific injury to play behind the worst O-Line in football and hasn’t blown it out again.

  6. Omitted stats that favour Burrow over Prescott:
    Completion percentage – 70.4 vs 68.8
    Passing yardage – 4611 vs 4449
    Fumbles – 5 vs 14, with fumbles lost being 4 and 7.
    But the most consequential difference?
    Number of times sacked – Burrow was sacked 51 times compared to Prescott’s 30.
    Burrow plays behind one of the worst lines in the league, and yet he still managed to put up comparable if not better numbers than the more experienced player on the more stable offence.

  7. Hands down Burrow deserves this – not the pretender, Dakota. Dakota has padded his stats on the NFC East – Burrow actually has had to play teams that had offenses and defenses. Dakota is a fraud and will remain so.

  8. I want to nominate Eagleswin comment as the comment of the year. Concise, to the point, and facts back it up. Nicely done. 🙂

  9. Dak Prescott loves his stats which are just useless words on paper without Wins in important games at best he is just an average vastly overpaid Quarterback

  10. mrbigchest says:
    January 13, 2022 at 10:03 am
    If Joe Burrow was on the Cowboys they would have the 1 seed.
    ———————-
    If Joe Burrow were on the Cowboys he would have won this award.

  11. Many people had Burrow coming back midseason. Not only did he play from week 1 but at a MVP pace
    with average O line! Hope Burrow sees this kind of stuff and fuels him..

  12. Took him a 17th game to break Romo’s record and I’m not sure why the media isn’t pointing that out in all these 17th game records that were broken.

  13. This has been a burr in my shorts for years and years, giving the Comeback Player of the Year Award strictly because the player was injured the year before. The worst example of this was Tom Brady getting the award in 2009 after he blew out his knee in the first game of 2008. The award should go to the player who came back from a subpar year … on the field, not from a golf cart.

    ———–

    They have that award, it’s called Most improved and it’s the award no athlete from any sport wants to get at their awards banquet

  14. The real winner of this “award” will be evident by the end of Wildcard weekend.

    My money is on Burrows outperforming Dak-

  15. Prescott had far more time to rehab, played a much easier schedule in a weak division, and worked within a much more established and talented team.

    This one should have been Burrow.

  16. “The award should go to the player who came back from a subpar year … on the field, not from a golf cart.”

    That would be the “He doesn’t suck as bad as last year award”

  17. The lack of mention of Nick Bosa is brutal. I hope he feels slighted and eats Dak’s lunch all day on Sunday.

    Burrow>Dak, by a hefty margin if you’re only including QB’s.

  18. This award is less “who bounced back the most statistically?” and more “who suffered the gnarliest injury last year and came back?”

  19. Yikes. This didn’t end well for the boys. Comeback runner-up whatever yall wanna call it. How bout them Cowboys!!!

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