6: 00 AM ET

  • Todd Archer

    Stop

    ESPN Group Creator

    • Lined NFL since 1997, Cowboys since 2003
    • Previously covered Bengals and Dolphins
    • Lives in Dallas residence with his wife and two teens
  • Adam Teicher

    Stop

    ESPN Group Creator

    • Lined Chiefs for 20 seasons for Kansas City Star
    • Joined ESPN in 2013

Dak Prescott vs. Patrick Mahomes: That is the tip billing for Sunday’s game between the Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium (4: 25 p.m. ET, Fox), the place two of the NFL’s three $40 million quarterbacks meet for the first time in their careers.

“If I modified into a fan, here’s a game I’d watch on Sunday, in particular with every quarterbacks,” Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy talked about.

Both groups are considered as threats to create deep playoff runs and each quarterbacks enter the sport coming off that is-extra-love-it performances in Week 10.

A week after throwing for fair 166 yards for the length of a 13-7 get against the Inexperienced Bay Packers — the fewest in a game he started and completed — Mahomes threw for 406 yards and 5 touchdown passes with no interceptions in a 41-14 get against the Las Vegas Raiders. Mahomes dedicated no turnovers for the second straight week after having 12 during the first eight games of the season.

“I am privy to the numbers as a long way because the turnovers, takeaways, but I’ve fair love the leisure in our game, the final game, he’s AFC offensive player of the week,” McCarthy talked about of Mahomes. “I’ve that reveals you not most effective what he’s capable of, he’s played at that level for a the truth is very prolonged time already. He’s established himself in the league as an MVP quarterback so that is the quarterback we’re getting ready for.”

A week after ending fair 48.7% of his passes for the length of a loss to the Denver Broncos, Prescott had what McCarthy talked about would possibly perchance perchance perhaps want been his handiest game of the season, throwing for 296 yards with two touchdown passes while rushing for but every other in a 43-3 get over the Atlanta Falcons.

“He isn’t fair a appropriate quarterback,” Chiefs defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo talked about of Prescott. “He’s a appropriate athletic quarterback. I’ve he’s a trim quarterback … and he can create you look hideous. He can execute the final things that it be vital to execute as a quarterback to be successful. I am attempting to search out a weakness.”

With a ramification of anticipation earlier than Sunday’s game, ESPN Chiefs reporter Adam Teicher and Cowboys reporter Todd Archer make a selection a study the struggles every quarterback has had to beat apart from to the traits that create every particular.

Leadership

Mahomes: Mahomes is one in every of two voices in the Chiefs’ locker room that everyone listens to, with security Tyrann Mathieu being the diversified. Last year the Chiefs made Mahomes the NFL’s absolute most lifelike-paid player with a 10-year, $450 million contract extension, and his leadership abilities weren’t an insignificant element in their resolution to execute so.

“One of many things we now own considered in Patrick in his younger NFL occupation is what a substantial chief he’s and how effectively he works with diversified groups of of us,” Chiefs chairman Clark Hunt talked about.

Mahomes lately led the locker room effort to welcome huge receiver Josh Gordon, who had been suspended six conditions since the 2013 season (5 for some make of substance abuse) and modified into returning to the NFL after a two-season absence.

“We’ll say him into this family we now own constructed with him on this locker room and investigate cross-check to get essentially the most convenient out of him, clearly on the discipline, but off the discipline as effectively,” Mahomes talked about. “We want him to reach lifestyles extra than simply on the discipline, so we will execute essentially the most convenient we can in any method imaginable.”

Prescott: Or not it is effectively-known how the Cowboys the truth is feel about Prescott. His leadership is his strongest quality. He gets guys to have in him and have in themselves. He does it through his work earlier than observe, at observe and after observe.

How about what a extinct teammate thinks? Fresh York Jets quarterback Mike White modified into with Prescott for parts of two seasons.

“I believed off the discipline what Dak does so effectively is the relationships he has with each person in that locker room and in that building,” White talked about final week. “That is barely roughly how he operates and that is the reason what I realized firsthand and when I first obtained there to Dallas. Whether or not it be clearly [Ezekiel Elliott] or starting up receivers or the observe squad backup nook, he’s obtained a relationship with everyone and I strive to emulate that, as effectively.”

Decision-making

Mahomes: He modified into very fair appropriate at the anxiety-reward stability in his first three seasons as a starter. His touchdown to interception ratio of nearly 5-to-1 is proof.

That modified this season. His 10 interceptions led the NFL through Week 8. Some were the effects of hideous luck but some were the effects of Mahomes attempting too arduous to create a play.

The anguish came to a head Week 9 against the Packers. With the Chiefs struggling to get any big get, Mahomes bypassed an birth tight discontinue Travis Kelce in the middle of the discipline to investigate cross-check a deep shot to huge receiver Mecole Hardman. The skedaddle wasn’t an interception nonetheless it modified into incomplete and a existing of how Mahomes modified into having peril taming his instincts to switch for a tall play at a time when a 15-yard get would were a victory.

Mahomes has talked a number of conditions this season about reviewing his resolution-making job and making modifications, but most effective lately own the effects been showing. Mahomes hasn’t thrown an interception in two games, marking his longest such dash this season.

Prescott: He has been careful with the ball since arriving as a fourth-spherical absorb 2016. He had fair four interceptions as a rookie and is on waddle this season to own nine interceptions in 17 games. On the replacement hand it doesn’t come at the expense of getting the ball down the discipline.

Prescott is averaging 8.2 yards per strive, which can perhaps perhaps presumably be the second-most of his occupation, and is ending 70.3% of his passes, which can perhaps perhaps presumably be a occupation handiest. In eight starts, Prescott has 34 completions of no not as a lot as 20 yards.

“With our make of plays I’d put us in the extra of an aggressive class,” McCarthy talked about. “We’re not a dink-and-dunk offense. The level I am making with his completion share, I’ve it reveals you the model of player he’s and fair the roughly year he’s having. I’ve his resolution-making as a total has been very fair appropriate. The interception ratio is a limited higher than you want … but I’ve he’s awfully trim with the football.”

Arm energy

Mahomes: He has a tall arm and has proven it over and over. He heaved a touchdown skedaddle to Tyreek Hill in a 2018 preseason game that travelled 69 yards in the air. He once threw a ball out of Arrowhead Stadium from the taking part in discipline while understanding for the length of the offseason. He has talked of having a throw-off with Buffalo’s Josh Allen, but every other powerful-armed quarterback.

But Mahomes has stumbled on diversified programs of putting his powerful arm to appropriate use. He’s accomplished many throws while on the lag and having to throw across his physique. He uses a unfold of arm slots to total passes, alongside with aspect-armed to preserve a long way flung from a skedaddle-rusher who modified into in the passe passing lane. He’s accomplished a number of passes left-handed after switching the ball from his honest hand to preserve a long way flung from a skedaddle-rusher.

Or not it is advanced to have a quarterback extra assured in his skill to create any vital throw than Mahomes, and that self assurance stems from the energy of his passing arm.

Prescott: When of us talk about Prescott, arm energy is usually not among the first qualities that is listed, but he has an spectacular arm and would possibly perchance perchance perhaps create the final required throws. In baseball parlance, he has a plus arm.

“Robust,” CeeDee Lamb talked about.

How powerful? “He’s jammed a number of fingers, for definite,” Lamb talked about of catching Prescott’s passes. “Or not it is not fulfilling. You own obtained to come once more up and lag it. Is he going to hit the identical finger? You never know. His arm energy is out of the ordinary.”

The place Prescott would possibly perchance perchance perhaps fluctuate from Mahomes is his energy comes from his mechanics. His throws come from the bottom up. He has labored with extinct NFL quarterback Jon Beck and 3DQB for fair about his total occupation and their focal level has been on getting his legs and hips in sync with the upper physique. Prescott’s pregame warmup has become renowned.

Overcoming challenges

play

1: 13

Louis Riddick shares his tips on what the Chiefs want to execute defensively to neutralize the Cowboys.

Mahomes: He handled the first extended trail of his NFL occupation earlier this season. For the length of a three-week stretch, Mahomes had a QBR of 23.7 with a prolonged skedaddle of fair 25 yards. He compelled a replacement of throws that went for interceptions.

A shoddy Kansas City defense (ranked 26th, permitting 373.2 yards per game) created further strain on the Chiefs’ offense and Mahomes. Opponents were scheming with a undeniable effort they hadn’t shown earlier than to get rid of the deep ball.

Last week’s get over the Raiders modified into the leap forward. The Chiefs had three passes of 30 yards or extra. While the tall play modified into back, Hill powerful the tall receiving game by working back Darrel Williams (9 catches for 101 yards) and talked about it modified into the shorter throws that made the offense work.

“Groups are [trying] to pick out on out the deep photography a long way flung from us and Pat has learned procure out how to pick out on out what’s given to him, [like] checkdowns,” Hill talked about.

Prescott: A year ago at this time, Prescott modified into not as a lot as 2 months eradicated from surgery to repair a compound atomize and dislocation of his honest ankle, hoping there would be no infection that will impact his rehab.

He modified into cleared for the offseason program but for the length of the first week of coaching camp, he suffered a strained honest latissimus that took him off the discipline for 10 practices and the final preseason games. No subject, he still threw for 403 yards in the season opener against the reigning champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

On Oct. 17, he suffered a honest calf strain that saved him out of the Cowboys’ Halloween assembly against the Minnesota Vikings. His return to action against Denver didn’t skedaddle effectively, but he regarded love himself final week against the Falcons, ending 77% of his passes.

“I’ve it fair came from observe and everything that I vital to come once more to working on, fair getting tuned back in to my footwork, the use of my hips, fair getting everything that as a result of this truth I knew the ball would be popping out of my fingers,” Prescott talked about. “So there wasn’t essentially a throw in the sport but I do know in pregame I felt appropriate and I felt appropriate concerning the place I modified into and my physique being synched in and I modified into ready to get in the market and come once more to the player I’ve I am.”

QB on QB

Mahomes: He talked about Prescott is one in every of the quarterbacks he watches on video and tries to pick out on out some parts of Prescott’s game and incorporate them into his hang.

Mahomes, who grew up in Texas rooting for the Cowboys, will not be a fan of the group on Sunday, but talked about he’s a fan of Prescott’s.

“First off, he’s a substantial chief,” Mahomes talked about. “You would possibly perchance perchance perhaps even see that even in case you would possibly perchance perchance perhaps presumably effectively be fair searching at as a fan. He’s been a starter in the league for a the truth is very prolonged time now. He’s athletic. You would possibly perchance perchance perhaps even see that by the model he played in college and he can create reasonably a number of tall-time throws. So that they’ve a big offense over there and a big group over there so this would possibly perchance occasionally perhaps perhaps very effectively be a big explain for us to switch up against them this week.”

Prescott: What stands out to Prescott about Mahomes is never what you potentially can have.

“His competitiveness. He never believes he’s out of the sport, thinks he can create every throw,” Prescott talked about. “That is gargantuan at that space fair to own that self assurance. I’ve it goes a prolonged method in bleeding to your diversified teammates. These guys feeding off that as effectively. Or not it is gargantuan. And he’s a tall-time playmaker. He’s a big player. MVP, clearly, Super Bowl MVP. Particular skills.”

He’s tried to be taught from Mahomes through the years.

“[I] strive to pick out on out some from the final big quarterbacks games,” Prescott talked about. “He’s somebody that if you occur to would possibly perchance perchance perhaps effectively be on the switch and the final passes he does, I’ve everyone tries to consist of that.”

Even the no-look stuff?

“Have I attempted it? Perchance a time or two,” he talked about. “A bunch of conditions I prefer my receivers off-guard with it, so I am not that large of a fan of it.”

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