FRISCO, Texas — Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones celebrated his 78th birthday on Tuesday by expressing his optimism for the Cowboys playoff chances and for quarterback Dak Prescott's full recovery by springtime.
"I'm told by the doctors, physically, there should be no problem with [Prescott] being back out there by early May or April," Jones said on his weekly radio call with 105.3 The Fan.
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When asked if he has any concerns about Prescott's road to recovery, Jones said, "I don't have any. I don't at all. The nature of what they found when they did his surgery is positive. Positive to his chances of getting back to normal."
Prescott suffered a compound fracture in his right ankle during Sunday's win over the New York Giants.
The 25-year-old was understandably emotional as he was carted off the field at AT&T Stadium, while 25,000 fans stood and applauded their star quarterback.
He was taken to a local hospital where he underwent surgery Sunday night and was then discharged on Monday morning.
"I spoke to him before he went to the hospital," Jones said. "I was so, so sorry for the circumstances. I was well aware of all the things going through his mind and felt it with him."
Prescott has endured more than any person should over the last six months, as he's battled depression and mourned the loss of one of his brothers.
On the playing field, Prescott was in the midst of a record-breaking season despite the Cowboys 1-3 record at the time of his injury.
Through Week 4, Prescott threw for 1,690 yards -- an NFL record through the first four weeks of a season.
The 2016 fourth round pick has been a relative bargain for the Cowboys over the last five seasons. However, Prescott played the 2020 season under the franchise tag. At $31.4 million, he has the highest 2020 base salary in the NFL.
A long-term contract extension continues to be a cloud looming over Prescott, the front office and Cowboys fans around the world.
Prescott is quite obviously one of the best quarterbacks in football, but Jones has yet to back-up the Brinks truck for him because of the other contracts he's paying (see: Ezekiel Elliott, Amari Cooper, Jaylon Smith, etc).
"I'm reminded that to have a team, we have to be mindful how we dole out our resources," Jones affirmed on Tuesday. "It's part of the game. It's the business and contract part."
While the Cowboys say Dak is "our future" and claim they intend to sign him to a long-term deal, they'll have to wait until the NFL season is over.
Jones remains hopeful about the Cowboys season, in the wake of Prescott's season-ending ankle injury.
“Certainly in the big scheme of things, to lose a player at this position like Dak, we’ve got to basically adjust.“
During the offseason, Jones signed former Cincinnati Bengals (and TCU) quarterback Andy Dalton -- an insurance policy in case Prescott decided to holdout on his contract.
Dalton is one of the more talented and experienced back-up quarterbacks in the game.
"Andy Dalton is a player that can get the job done in the NFL," Jones asserted on Tuesday. "He is a starting quarterback. I’m being trite when I say this, but I think he’s a starting quarterback on a very successful and winning team.”
When asked about his unrelenting optimism, Jones replied, "I don't want to live on the other side of the track. The 'skeptic'... I don't want to live over there. I don't like it over there. I run from it... I love the world of naiveté."