Cowboys' Ben DiNucci reveals Dak Prescott's advice to him before likely first career start

Ex-James Madison University star is the third QB for Dallas this season

Ben DiNucci is likely to get the start for the Dallas Cowboys at quarterback on Sunday when the team faces off against the Philadelphia Eagles in a pivotal NFC East matchup.

It will be DiNucci’s first career NFL start and the third quarterback the Cowboys have put under center this season. Dak Prescott is out for the season after suffering a compound right ankle fracture and Andy Dalton is on the sidelines after suffering a concussion.

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DiNucci revealed to reporters Thursday the advice he received from Prescott, according to ESPN.

“Kind of just walked up to him and said, 'Hey this isn't what you said my rookie year was going to be like,’” DiNucci said. “He laughed and gave me a hug and just said, 'We've talked about this. Go out there and do you. Take completions. Trust the guys around you. You'll be great. Don't overthink it. Football's football.' It's a game I've been playing since seventh grade. Not going to try to make it any more than it is. Going to have fun with it, bring a lot of energy, bring a lot of confidence and let my play speak for itself.”

DiNucci was 2-for-3 with 39 passing yards when he took over for Dalton on Sunday. Dalton left the game after taking a questionable hit to the head from the Washington Football Team's Jon Bostic. The linebacker was ejected from the game after the play. 

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“For me, this is an opportunity of a lifetime. I think, as a rookie seventh-rounder coming in, you see Dak and you see Andy at the top of the depth chart, it's, ‘Hey, there's no chance that I'm going to be on the field this year.’ But, hey, this is 2020. What else do you expect? Here we are. week 8 of my rookie year I've got a chance to go out there on 'Sunday Night Football' and do what I love to do. I couldn't be happier or more excited,” he said.

Dallas selected DiNucci in the seventh round of the draft earlier this year out of James Madison University. He transferred to the Dukes from Pittsburgh prior to the start of the 2018 season.

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In 29 career games for James Madison, he recorded 5,716 passing yards and 45 touchdown passes. He completed 70% of his passes.