Dak Prescott is Climbing Up the All-Time Passing TD Leaderboard in Dallas Cowboys’ Franchise History – Here’s How the Leaderboard Stands Today!

Dak Prescott is Climbing Up the All-Time Passing TD Leaderboard in Dallas Cowboys’ Franchise History – Here’s How the Leaderboard Stands Today!

Dak Prescott was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the fourth round (No. 135 overall) of the 2016 NFL Draft – the same draft that saw the Cowboys add Ezekiel Elliott. At the time, Prescott was expected to battle for a backup role, but was thrust into a starting role when Tony Romo suffered a preseason injury.

In his first game as a starter, Dak Prescott threw for 227 yards, but failed to score a touchdown and ended up losing the game 20-19. What happened next was nothing short of remarkable – he led the Cowboys on an 11-game winning streak and finished the season 13-3-0. Bye-bye Tony Romo, hello Dak Prescott.

He didn’t miss a single game over the next four years, throwing at least 3,300 yards and 22 touchdowns each season. His breakout season came in 2019 when he threw for 4,902 passing yards and 30 TDs (career-high at the time). He then threw for 4,449 yards and 37 TDs in 2021 after an injury-riddled 2020. 

RELATED: Russell Wilson Throws 300th Career Passing Touchdown — Do You Know the 13 Other NFL Quarterbacks With At Least 300 Career Passing Touchdowns?

Where Does Dak Prescott Rank on the Cowboys’ All-Time Passing TD List?

Dak Prescott is Climbing Up the All-Time Passing TD Leaderboard in Dallas Cowboys’ Franchise History – Here’s How the Leaderboard Stands Today!
via Instagram (@tony.romo)

Over the past seven seasons, Dak Prescott has led the Cowboys to a 53-32-0 record as starting QB. He has thrown for 24,943 yards, 166 touchdowns, and just 65 interceptions – despite 15 picks in 2022 alone – while also rushing for 1,642 yards and 26 touchdowns. In 2020, he caught an 11-yard TD as a receiver.

You can say what you want about Dak Prescott, but he’s doing things that only a few Dallas Cowboys’ quarterbacks have done for the franchise. He might not be the greatest Cowboys’ quarterback of all-time, but he ranks in the top-five and could make his way into the top-three if he continues to play for them. 

In fact, he’s creeping up the Dallas Cowboys’ all-time passing TD leaderboard with 166 to his name thus far. In the event he does stick with the team beyond 2022, he very well could find himself atop that leaderboard. With that said, let’s see where he ranks today and how far away he is from that top spot?

(For the sake of this article, we’re only including Cowboys’ quarterbacks with at least 10 passing TDs)

16. Jason Garrett – 11 touchdowns

Jason Garrett went undrafted in the 1989 NFL Draft and bounced around in different leagues before signing with the Dallas Cowboys in 1992 – his father was a member of their scouting department. He was never a full-time starter and spent his career as the backup or third-string QB behind Troy Aikman.

All in all, Garrett spent eight years in the NFL – seven of which with the Cowboys between 1993 and 1999. He played in 23 games for Dallas, but only started nine of them (6-3-0 in starts). He threw for 2,042 yards, 11 touchdowns, and 5 interceptions and was a member of their 1994 and 1996 Super Bowl teams.

**Jason Garrett was also the offensive coordinator for the Cowboys and spent 10 seasons as their head coach**

15. Gary Hogeboom – 13 touchdowns

Gary Hogeboom was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the fifth round (No. 133 overall) of the 1980 NFL Draft. He spent the first six seasons of his career with the team, playing in 45 games and making 12 starts over that span. He threw for 3,550 yards, 13 touchdowns, and 23 interceptions and had a 6-6-0 record. 

Hogeboom spent most of his career competing for playing time with another quarterback on this list, Danny White. He started 10 games during the 1984 season and led the Cowboys to a 6-4-0 record, throwing for 2,366 yards, 7 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions that season. He was out of Dallas by 1986.

14. Andy Dalton – 14 touchdowns

Andy Dalton spent one season with the Dallas Cowboys in 2020 after spending the previous nine years with the Cincinnati Bengals – a team that drafted him in the 2nd round (No. 35 overall) in 2011. Dallas signed him to a contract to be Dak Prescott’s backup for the season, which they ended up needing. 

Prescott suffered a season-ending injury during Week 5 and Dalton immediately replaced him. He played in 11 games that year and started nine of them, leading the Cowboys to a 4-5-0 record. He threw for 2,170 yards, 14 touchdowns, and 8 interceptions. He has bounced around the league ever since. 

13. Vinny Testeverde – 17 touchdowns

Vinny Testeverde spent one year with the Dallas Cowboys in 2004 – it was his 18th season in the NFL. He was initially signed to be a backup quarterback and mentor to their young QB, Quincy Carter, at the time, but Carter was cut (more on that below) and Testeverde became the team’s starter for the season.

Testeverde played in 16 games in 2004 and started 15 of them. He threw for 3,532 yards, 17 touchdowns, and 20 interceptions. Unfortunately, his Cowboys finished 5-10-0 with him under center and he led the league in interceptions. After the season, Dallas decided to move on to a new QB – Drew Bledsoe

12. Jon Kitna – 17 touchdowns

Jon Kitna signed with the Dallas Cowboys ahead of the 2009 season – it was his 13th season in the league. He was signed to be a backup quarterback to Tony Romo after Brad Johnson underperformed in that role a year ago. Kitna wouldn’t see any action in 2009, but saw significant playing time in 2010. 

With Romo out due to a broken clavicle, Kitna stepped in and played in 10 games – starting nine of them. The Cowboys went just 4-5-0 during that span with Kitna throwing for 2,365 yards, 16 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions that season. He returned in 2011 to throw his 17th TD pass, but injuries led him to retire.

11. Steve Pelluer – 28 touchdowns

Steve Pelluer was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 5th round (No. 113 overall) of the 1984 NFL Draft. He was initially the team’s third-string quarterback behind Gary Hogeboom (above) and Danny White (below). He was named the backup by 1986 and spent a season as the starter in 1988. 

Pelluer played in a total of 47 games for the Cowboys, but only started in 27 of them – he had just an 8-19-0 record in those starts. He finished his Cowboys’ career with 6,555 yards, 28 touchdowns, and 38 interceptions. 17 of his touchdowns came in that 1988 season, which was his last with the Cowboys. 

10. Quincy Carter – 29 touchdowns

Quincy Carter was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2nd round (No. 53 overall) of the 2001 NFL Draft and was expected to be their next franchise quarterback. He’d likely be further up on this list, but he was abruptly cut ahead of the 2004 season after failing a drug test. He only spent three years in Dallas. 

Carter led the team to a 16-15-0 record (10-6-0 in 2003) and threw for 5,839 yards, 29 touchdowns, and 36 interceptions. If he didn’t fail that drug test, who knows if Tony Romo would’ve ever been a thing – he was a third-string QB and likely would’ve been waived in lieu of Vinny Testeverde as the backup.

9. Drew Bledsoe – 30 touchdowns

Drew Bledsoe was signed by the Dallas Cowboys ahead of the 2005 season and was expected to be their starter moving forward. He started in all 16 games that season and led the Cowboys to a 9-7-0 record – throwing for 3,639 yards, 23 touchdowns, and 17 interceptions. Tony Romo was his backup.

In 2006, Bledsoe wasn’t playing like his normal self and only started six games before being replaced by Romo. In those six games, Bledsoe threw for 1,164 yards, 7 touchdowns, and 8 interceptions. The team went just 3-3-0 and it paved the way for Romo – who went on to be on to start 127 games for the team.

8. Eddie LeBaron – 45 touchdowns

Eddie LeBaron was the Dallas Cowboys’ first ever starting quarterback during the team’s inaugural season in 1960. They traded a first and second round draft pick for him and convinced him to come out of retirement after spending seven seasons with the Washington Redskins. He spent four years in Dallas.

During that time, LeBaron played in 52 games and started in 28 of them – throwing for 5,331 yards, 45 touchdowns, and 53 interceptions in that span. Unfortunately, the Cowboys were just 5-22-1 with him under center and he was only the starter for two of his four years. He had Dallas’ first ever TD pass. 

7. Craig Morton – 80 touchdowns

Craig Morton was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 1st round (No. 5 overall) of the 1965 NFL Draft. He began his career as the backup quarterback to Don Meredith and eventually earned a starting role when he retired. He then started competing for playing time when Roger Staubach entered the picture. 

Morton appeared in 101 games for the Cowboys between 1965 and 1974, starting in 47 of those games – the team was 32-14-1 with him under center. He threw for 10,279 yards, 80 touchdowns, and 73 interceptions with the Cowboys, leading them to Super Bowl V in 1970, though they lost to the Colts.

6. Don Meredith – 135 touchdowns

Don Meredith signed a “contract” with the Dallas Cowboys before they were an official NFL team – with some people labeling him the Original Cowboy. He was the backup quarterback to Eddie LeBaron in 1960 and 1961, but started to receive starts in 1962 – he was named the full-time starter for the 1963 season.

Meredith spent his entire nine-year career with the Cowboys before abruptly retiring after the 1968 season. He appeared in 104 games for Dallas and started 83 of them – leading his team to a 47-32-4 record. He threw for 17,199 yards, 135 touchdowns, and 111 interceptions and made three Pro Bowls.

5. Roger Staubach – 153 touchdowns

Roger Staubach was the quarterback that finally led the Cowboys to the promised land. He was initially drafted by the team in the 10th round (No. 129 overall) in the 1964 draft, but didn’t join the team until 1969 after five years in the Navy. He spent the first few years of his career competing with Craig Morton.

In 1971, Staubach relieved Morton and led the Cowboys to 10 straight games before leading them to their first ever Super Bowl victory. He went on to appear in 131 games and started in 114 of them over his 11 year career with the Cowboys – he threw for 22,700 yards, 153 touchdowns, and 109 interceptions. 

4. Danny White – 155 touchdowns

Danny White was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 3rd round (No. 53 overall) of the 1974 NFL Draft. He was mainly drafted to be a punter, so he decided to join the WFL to be a quarterback. He eventually signed with the Cowboys two years later and was the team’s punter and backup QB behind Staubach.

When Staubach retired after the 1979 season, White became the team’s starting quarterback and also continued to serve as the punter until 1984. He started in 92 games for the Cowboys and led them to a 62-30 record, throwing for 21,959 yards, 155 TDs, and 132 interceptions. He won a Super Bowl in 1977.

3. Troy Aikman – 165 touchdowns

Troy Aikman was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys with the No. 1 overall pick in the 1989 NFL Draft and became the team’s immediate starter under new head coach Jimmy Johnson. In 11 games as a rookie, Aikman failed to win a game and threw for just 1,749 yards, 9 touchdowns, and 18 interceptions. 

He played better in 1990 and 1991, but finally broke out in 1992 – leading the Boys to a 13-3-0 record and at least 10 wins in five consecutive seasons. He started in 165 games for the Cowboys and threw for 32,942 yards, 165 touchdowns, and 141 interceptions. He led the Cowboys to three Super Bowl wins.

2. Dak Prescott – 166 touchdowns

It took Dak Prescott just 97 games to 166 touchdown passes and while it’s just one more TD than Troy Aikman had, it took him 165 games to reach that mark. Unfortunately for Dak, he hasn’t had the Super Bowl success that Aikman had. In fact, Prescott consistently seems to underperform in the playoffs. 

Still, Prescott has a respectable 61-36-0 record in the regular season, was just 98 yards away from throwing for 5,000 yards in 2019, and has thrown for more than 22 touchdowns in six of the past seven seasons (the only mishap being his five-game season in 2020). He’s a good QB, just not a clutch one. 

1. Tony Romo – 248 touchdowns

Tony Romo was signed by the Dallas Cowboys ahead of the 2003 season, but was a third-string QB behind Quincy Carter and Chad Hutchinson. He then sat on the bench behind Vinny Testeverde and eventually Drew Bledsoe before being named starter over Bledsoe midway through the 2006 season. 

Romo was the team’s starter until 2015, when injuries derailed his season and eventually led to his retirement after the 2016 season – at that point, Dak was in town. In 156 games (127 starts), Romo led the Cowboys to a 78-49-0 record and threw for 34,183 yards, 248 touchdowns, and 117 interceptions. 

Will Dak Prescott Stay With the Dallas Cowboys?

Dak Prescott has given his all to the Dallas Cowboys’ franchise for seven years now. He follows a string of successful Cowboys’ quarterbacks, which includes Don Meredith (1960-1968), Roger Staubach (1969-1979), Danny White (1976-1988), Troy Aikman (1989-2000), and Tony Romo (2004-2016). 

And like Tony Romo, who came before him, Prescott has had his fair share of criticism through the years. He’s following down the same path as Romo – keeping the team relevant during the regular season, but playing mediocre football in the playoffs, when it matters most. It’s not sitting well with Cowboys’ fans. 

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: The Best NFL QBs of All Time and When They Were Drafted

In fact, many fans are calling for him to be ousted this offseason in lieu of a new quarterback – which could make things better or worse. While we don’t know what the future holds for Dak Prescott in Dallas, we do know that he’s a hell of a lot better than most quarterbacks today and isn’t worth throwing away.

About At The Buzzer

At The Buzzer, or ATB is the place for those who love sports, life, family, community, and so much more. We are far from the run-of-the-mill 24/7 sports news websites. We not only bring you what’s happening in the world of sports in terms of trades and breaking news, but we also bring you the news that goes on behind the scenes, like big life moments, and so much more. So take a minute and read one of our articles, we promise you won't regret it.