ARLINGTON – Jason Garrett wants his backup quarterback to be able to fly the plane and it would appear as if he is ready to go with Cooper Rush as the break-glass-in-case-of-emergency co-pilot.
Or maybe JG can convince Andrew Luck to come out of retirement to be the Dakup.
The competition between Rush and Mike White to be the understudy to Dallas Cowboys starting quarterback Dak Prescott has a clear winner, and it's not the guy the team wanted.
The team wanted Mike White to win this job, but Cooper Rush has out-played him throughout this preseason. Whatever happens in the fourth and final fake game on Thursday night at Jerry's Club should not matter as far as this competition is concerned.
Garrett did not make any official announcement after the Cowboys' 34-0 win over the Houston Texans in the third fake preseason game of the season, but the results are evident.
Rush has earned this job and looks to be a guy who will stick in the NFL, even if that means he's never a starting quarterback.
"He understands the importance of the mental approach of playing the quarterback position and he is really, really well prepared," Garrett said. "There aren't many situations that surprise him because he prepares so well. Now, as he gets more experience, he'll become more and more comfortable in those situations and be able to take advantage of them.
"A big thing that you always look for when you evaluate quarterbacks is if they're playing decisively."
Rush, a third-year pro from Central Michigan who did not attempt a pass last season even though he was the No. 2 all year, will keep his spot. Or he should.
White, a 2018 fifth-round pick from Western Kentucky, has the size and arm but simply has not progressed enough for an NFL team to go with him as the backup.
At this point, it would be a surprise if the Cowboys keep all three quarterbacks on the roster for a second consecutive year.
The more likely scenario is the Cowboys will keep Dak and Rush and that's it. Maybe they can slide White through waivers and put him on the practice squad.
Rush's development in this camp is a credit to him; he improved. His passing. His accuracy. His decision making. His footwork. Everything is better.
Against the Texans, Rush completed 15 of 25 passes for 173 yards. It was a continuation of what has been a solid, if mostly boring, preseason.
"He probably didn't play great last year in the preseason – he'd be the first to tell you that. Oftentimes when you're a quarterback in those environments, the environments can impact you," Garrett said after the game. "He worked very hard throughout the season and continued to refine his skills in the offseason.
"I think he's played very well in training camp and during these preseason games. I just thought tonight he held really good command. He was decisive; he made good decisions; he threw the ball on time."
Not exactly Super Bowl material here, but we're talking about the Dakup.
Cooper Rush has earned the gig.