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DiNucci’s 10-month journey is in full swing



At the beginning of this calendar year, Ben DiNucci came to Frisco, Texas, ready to start the final game of his college career.

He didn’t even expect that, just 10 months later, he was in Frisco, Texas, preparing for his first NFL game.

Whether or not DiNucci actually started participating in the cowboys on Sunday night in Philadelphia, it will be a long journey.

In January of last year, DiNucci ended an impressive two-year career at James Madison University and played for the FCS Championship in North Dakota at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas. Be mentally prepared.

This week, he was in Frisco’s All-Star Game to prepare for the possibility of his starting NFL career quarterback, depending on the health of Andy Dalton, who last week Japan suffered a severe concussion in Washington.

DiNucci never thought about playing for the Cowboys in 2020. If he does, it means that more than one thing has gone wrong. That̵

7;s how it is. With Dak Prescott missing this season with an ankle injury, DiNucci saw some action in Monday’s football night loss to the Arizona Cardinals. With Dalton leaving last Sunday’s game, DiNucci saw a wide range of game action.

Dalton has officially entered the concussion agreement this week, and if he is not disbanded before Sunday’s game with the Philadelphia Eagles, Dinich will be the only option for the Cowboys quarterback. Although the circumstances that led to his playing time were disastrous, DiNucci’s place on the roster can be traced back to Frisco last January.

Before the FCS Championship, he jumped on the elevator to reach the hotel room, and someone entered behind him before the door closed. It’s Mike McCarthy, who was recently hired as the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys. McCarthy’s brother is DiNucci’s eighth-grade basketball coach in Pittsburgh, so DiNucci introduced himself and explained the family relationship.

“He is very familiar with us [James Madison] Dinucci recalled: “He knew who I was, which surprised me.”

The FCS quarterback and the NFL coach had a conversation together for about five minutes, discussing the various regional ties the two shared.McCarthy said a few months later: “Ben and I are from the same area of ​​Pittsburgh.” “So I know everything he does. [in high school and college football]. ”

If DiNucci was flattered that the Dallas Cowboys head coach knew who he was in January, he would be ecstatic when the Cowboys used their seventh-round pick in April to buy him for the McCarthy game.

DiNucci initially played at the University of Pittsburgh, but made a difficult decision to transfer to James Madison. The increased opportunities made him the most efficient quarterback in the United States. In 2019, he threw for 3341 yards, made 29 touchdowns, and only intercepted 6 times. He also led the nation with a 70.6 finish.

In his quarter and a half against Washington last Sunday, he only completed 2 of 3 passes for 39 yards, and he was fired 3 times. But one of them was the 20-yard strike against Amari Cooper, and that happened when DiNucci seemed too shaken to handle the big stage.

Cowboys fans may be fascinated by DiNucci’s 569 yards and seven touchdowns on James Madison last season.The Cowboys base their offense on Dak Prescott’s efficient arms with Resourceful legs. Unlike Dalton, DiNucci also brought a similar mentality to the position.

Dinucci said after being drafted in April: “In this day and age, quarterbacks must be able to move and expand the range of the game when the pocket is broken or the player is not open.” [Prescott] In the past few years, he has been a bystander, and he has been successful as a fourth-round pick. He was able to come in and study under a guy like him. ”

On the other hand, McCarthy went further when comparing DiNucci. He claimed that his accuracy reminded him of the young Mark Burger, who had played two professional bowling games with St. Louis Rams in the mid-2000s. Match. McCarthy said: “He is a young man who has held this position all his life.”

It seems that DiNucci has been feasted by a defensive line that has gained insurmountable momentum, but the rookie did not sound threatened at all after the game.

Dinucci said: “Obviously, from James Madison, you won’t see people like (Washington defensive end) Chase Young come to you every day.” “But most importantly, football is football. This is the game I’ve been playing since the seventh grade, so I can only do something except walk there with a smile and huddle up and say, “Let’s go. Let’s have some fun. We have no loss, it is raining, and there is no one in the stands, so let us create our own energy here and try to find something positive from this event, and then make the main points on the blackboard. ‘”

Through a week of practice as a hypothetical entry-level game, the Cowboys will be able to prepare a quarter of the game plan for DiNucci. His offensive coordinator, Kellen Moore, was in a similar situation in 2015, when he had to walk to the injured Tony Romo station mid-season. Moore said on Monday: “I think the biggest thing is communication and participation.” “You will be crowded with people who don’t practice too much. You have to make sure that all 11 people are on the same page. Please play with confidence. People will. Feel it and respond well. ”

Perhaps the most important thing for DiNucci’s confidence is that he will be able to enter a game with a score of 0-0 instead of facing a huge loss.

He said: “I think if you told me a year ago, this is what I would say’no way,’ and you would pinch me,” he said. “But here we are. This team drafted for a reason, and Coach McCarthy has a reason to bring me here.”


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