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Dak Prescott out indefinitely; needs surgery on his right thumb

That changes the landscape of the NFC. Unless, Dallas makes a phone call.

NFC Wild Card Playoffs - San Francisco 49ers v Dallas Cowboys Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones told reporters Sunday night that quarterback Dak Prescott will be out several weeks as he needs surgery. But, Jones said, “it’s a long way until January,” after acknowledging how putrid his team looked in Week 1.

So, Jimmy Garoppolo? Some have already said they wouldn’t trade Jimmy to any NFC team — especially the Cowboys. I don’t see Jones and Dallas punting this season with Cooper Rush, an undrafted free agent in 2020, under center. Of course, it’ll depend on how long Prescott is out. But “several weeks” could mean the entire first half, at minimum.

Dallas currently has just over $11 million in cap space. If traded, Garoppolo the 49ers would pay Garoppolo $1.8 million in dead money while saving $12.1 million in cap savings — all the more incentive to move on. It gives Jimmy a fresh start and helps you financially.

Would Kyle Shanahan willingly trade the quarterback perceived as a “winner” to a playoff team? Therein lies the question. If the return on investment is worth it, it’s a no-brainer. Sure, you could get greedy and ask for a Zack Martin or a starter in return, but Day 2 draft picks are far more likely, considering how desperate Dallas is if they don’t plan on tanking this year.

Before the week started, here’s how I predicted this season to look in the NFC:

NFC playoff seedings:

(1) Bucs

(2) Packers

(3) Eagles

(4) 49ers

(5) Vikings

(6) Saints

(7) Rams

Even with a healthy Prescott, I didn’t think Dallas was making the playoffs. But Mike McCarthy can’t afford another mediocre year, which is why the Cowboys might be in a situation where they’re willing to do whatever it takes to acquire Jimmy.

Prescott wasn’t the only starting quarterback to go down with an injury Sunday. Patriots quarterback Mac Jones suffered a back injury Sunday, although X-rays came back negative. Neither Bill Belichick or Jones commented on the injury after the game.