A prime time game against a divisional rival would normally be considered a dream scenario for any rookie making his NFL debut. Unfortunately for Ben DiNucci, the Dallas Cowboys’ quarterback, however, that dream quickly turned out to be a nightmare when he experienced a sizzling time in football on Sunday night when the Cowboys lost 9-23 to the Philadelphia Eagles.
DiNucci got the first start of his NFL career after injury to Starter Dak Prescott at the end of the season in week 5 and the exclusion of substitute quarterback Andy Dalton due to a concussion he suffered last week against the Washington football team.
However, his performance prompted FOX sports presenter Skip Bayless to ask if the seven-round kicker of the NFL Draft 2020 will ever get a second chance.
“It is possible that Ben DiNucci has just played his first and last NFL game. Hopefully not for his sake.
“But that is the reality of what we just saw. At least Sunday night was football for the Dallas Cowboys.”
It’s possible Ben DiNucci just played his first and last NFL game. Hopefully not for his sake. But this is the reality of what we just saw. At least it was Sunday Night Football for the Dallas Cowboys.
– Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) November 2, 2020
In his first NFL game, DiNucci hit 21 of his 40 180-yard passes, zero touchdowns and a pass score of 64.6, was fired four times and lost two fumbles.
Both of his Fumbles were converted to points, continuing a worrying trend that has seen Dallas fall 97 points behind in sales so far this season.
The Cowboys, who until Prescott’s gruesome injury had shot all the drums, have not scored a touchdown in the last two games – only the fourth time in the franchise’s history that they have played two games without a touchdown, for a total of 12 points. Dallas’ final touchdown came deep into the fourth quarter when the country scored a Monday night football game against Arizona Cardinals in week 6 in the 6th minute of the game.
Ben DiNucci wonders how he ended up here. pic.twitter.com/fs371b1aBT
– Andrew Perloff (@andrewperloff) November 2, 2020
To be fair, it has to be said that Ben DiNucci tonight is like the 6th round of Draft Pick instead of the 7th.
– Cameron Magruder (@ScooterMagruder) November 2, 2020
Ben DiNucci is a newcomer. Philadelphia took advantage of that.
– Newy Scruggs (@newyscruggs) November 2, 2020
Since it becomes routine every time a reserve quarterback – or a third choice at DiNucci – fails, Twitter questioned why Colin Kaepernick is still left out in the cold.
“You’re telling me that this QB [DiNucci] is better than Kap?,” twittered New Orleans Pelican star Josh Hart, who also pointed out that he would have done a better job under the midfield than the cowboy rookie.
Are you telling me that this Dallas qb is better than Kap?
– Josh Hart (@joshhart) November 2, 2020
I could be better than this QB from Dallas…
– Josh Hart (@joshhart) November 2, 2020
Hart wasn’t the only one wondering why NFL teams seem to have no problem giving mediocre quarterbacks a chance, while none of 32 franchises played a prank against Kaepernick, a Super Bowl starting quarterback seven years ago.
Ben DiNucci, former substitute player for Nathan Peterman, starts a game and does whatever that was, but Colin Kaepernick will probably never play in the NFL again pic.twitter.com/03k1aiDmZW
– Kaelen Jones (@kaelenjones) November 2, 2020
Expectations that DiNucci, who was voted in the seventh round of the NFL Draft 2020, could stop the cowboys’ double-digit losing streak were limited, especially since even a seasoned veteran like Dalton had fought hard behind a broken offensive line in his two starts.
Dallas may also blame a little terrible luck for losing both Prescott and Dalton, forcing him to turn to DiNucci, who continued a well-established and disturbing trend for the Cowboys, which is 3-11 in the rookies’ early starts.
Dalton should be back next week when the 2-6 Cowboys welcome the undefeated Pittsburgh Steelers to Dallas and DiNucci welcomed the return of his more experienced colleague.
“With Andy back, it’s great for our team, isn’t it?” he told USA Today.
“Another guy in the locker room we can count on. He has been trustworthy and reliable all season. If he’s healthy, whoever he is, next Sunday out there, I’m just going to prepare myself properly”.