Todd ArcherESPN staff writer3 minutes to read
Frisco, Texas – Dak Prescott will have one familiar voice in the quarterback room this year: Reserve Cooper Rush has agreed to a two-year deal worth $5 million and includes a $1.25 million signing bonus, according to sources.
Rush could make up to $6 million in the deal.
Rush has a 5-1 record as a Cowboys starter the past two seasons while filling in for an injured Prescott. For his career, he threw for 1,475 yards with eight touchdown passes and four interceptions. At least two AFC teams sought to sign Rush before he agreed to return to the Cowboys.
The team probably wouldn’t have made the playoffs in 2022 without Rush, who stepped in for an injured Dak Prescott early in the season and went 4-1 as a starter.
Prescott suffered a broken right thumb in the season-opening loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers that required surgery and forced him to miss five games. In stepped Rush, who was consistent and made plays when it mattered most.
His numbers weren’t amazing – Rush never exceeded 235 yards in passing or caught more than 2 touchdown passes in a game. Still, he helped the Cowboys overcome the 2021 Super Bowl finalist (Cincinnati Bengals) and champion (Los Angeles Rams) in a four-week span, while notching two key NFC East wins against the New York Giants and leading Washington in between.
Rush, who turned 29 in November, was intercepted three times in the first half in a loss against the Philadelphia Eagles before Prescott returned.
In the nine games last season, Rush had 84 of 162 passes for 1,051 yards and five touchdowns.
It was not the first time that Rush had been pressured into service in place of Prescott. In the first start of his career – against the Minnesota Vikings on October 31, 2021 – Rush threw for 325 yards on 24 of 40 passes twice, including the game-winner to Amari Cooper in the last minute.
In three of his six career starts, he led Dallas to a late game-winning walk, becoming one of nine quarterbacks to do so in the first six starts of his career.
Rush won the Cowboys backup job as an undrafted free agent in 2017 and held the position until 2019. With the arrival of Mike McCarthy in 2020 and the addition of Andy Dalton, Rush was released and spent time with the Giants before returning to the Cowboys later. season.
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