Will Grier looked and sounded as if his last act with these Dallas Cowboys was throwing for 305 yards with star quarterback Dak Prescott as his play-caller.
Bittersweet, indeed, as the fifth-year player said.
Grier had a hand in four touchdowns in a 31-16 win over the Las Vegas Raiders in a preseason finale Saturday night, a day after the Cowboys appeared to fill his third-string role by acquiring Trey Lance in a trade with San Francisco.
Read more: Cowboys’ trade for Trey Lance is opportunistic
With Prescott in his ear, Grier completed 29 of 35 passes with two TDs and ran for 54 yards with two more scores in a likely Dallas swan song after two seasons behind backup Cooper Rush, and not taking a snap in the regular season.
Owner Jerry Jones said Grier was emotional before the game, knowing what the Lance trade meant for his future. Grier confirmed as much after the game, pausing several times to collect himself while answering questions from reporters.
“The hardest part on me is just leaving this place, to be honest,” Grier said. “Got really tight with the team. It’s hard to do what we do. I’ve gone through worse things and I will recover and be fine. “
Damien Williams had a 24-yard touchdown run for the Raiders, who were playing a few hours after NFL rushing champion Josh Jacobs ended his contract stalemate by agreeing to a one-year deal.
The loss ended a six-game preseason winning streak for Las Vegas, which was tied with Pittsburgh for the NFL’s longest after Baltimore’s record 24-game run ended at Washington last week.
After Grier’s 15-yard scoring pass to rookie running back Hunter Luepke for a 21-10 lead late in the first half, Prescott pumped his fists the same he way does after his own TDs and celebrated with offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer and coach Mike McCarthy.
Read more: 49ers, Shanahan failed to give Trey Lance a real chance
When the game was over, Prescott was more subdued, pointing out that his thoughts were with Grier as he answered questions about the addition of Lance.
“It’s a tough situation, honestly,” Prescott said. Prescott was more subdued after the game, stating that his thoughts were with Grier as he answered questions about Lance’s addition. Trey will be welcomed by us, and you welcome a teammate. I am a very generous person and that won’t change. “But my heart is with that guy there right now. The starters for both teams sat, including Jimmy Garoppolo, who made his Las Vegas debut a week earlier. Almost every Dallas starter didn’t play at all in the preseason.
Reporting by The Associated Press.
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