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Dak Prescott taking on larger role in Dallas locker room

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While Tony Romo prepares for a career in broadcasting, the Dallas Cowboys are preparing their locker room to hear a new, unifying voice from the quarterback position.

"Dak [Prescott] has earned that," Cowboys tight end Jason Witten told The Dallas Morning News. "He's the quarterback. That voice needs to be heard."

Added Prescott: "It's my first offseason. I get it, kind of running the show. In the locker room in the summer, working out with Jason Witten and Sean Lee, you're going to naturally kind of let those guys have it. For them calling me out sometimes to the group, it's been good.

"I got to thank all the vets of kind of doing a good job of kind of giving me a little bit more to say and some things to do, it's important."

For a team like the Cowboys, who relied so long on Romo, Witten and Lee to dispense the message, turning over some of the responsibility is no small feat. Typically, this happens organically over the course of time, but when you're the reigning offensive rookie of the year who happens to play for the Dallas Cowboys, your maturation process is going to be routinely documented and measured.

Prescott will have more weight on his shoulders this season than any quarterback in football. It was remarkable to watch him thrive amid the pressure back in 2016, though the Sisyphean nature of his situation makes for a fascinating case study in 2017.

His rise led to Romo's premature departure. His success led to a seemingly unmatchable bar, not only for Prescott but for fellow rookie Ezekiel Elliott. Dallas has one of the hardest strength of schedules this year and nearly every team in the NFC East got significantly better this offseason -- the Cowboys also took some serious hits on defense.

Counting out Prescott would be foolish, even with the small sample size. But it's not always easy to become the man and prove it all over again.

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