Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott‘s meteoric rise from fourth-round draft pick to NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year landed him the best breakthrough athlete award Wednesday night at the 2017 ESPYS at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.
“I’ve got to thank my teammates,” Prescott said after receiving the award. “All those great vets that allowed me to come in as a rookie and just take over the team and propelled me to do so.”
Thrust into the starter’s role after Tony Romo was injured in the preseason, Prescott was an immediate hit in his first NFL season, earning a Pro Bowl selection in addition to winning top rookie honors.
Prescott tied an NFL record for a rookie quarterback with 13 wins, including 11 straight, and led the Cowboys to an NFC East title. He had 23 touchdown passes and only four interceptions while also setting a team record for a quarterback with six rushing touchdowns.
Prescott was the Cowboys’ first offensive rookie of the year since Hall of Fame running back Emmitt Smith.
The Chicago Cubs’ thrilling seven-game World Series victory over the Cleveland Indians, which ended a 108-year title drought, took the ESPY for best moment.
Longtime Cubs fan Bill Murray accepted the award on the team’s behalf, popping a couple of bottles of champagne while on stage with former Cubs player David Ross and actor and fellow Cubs fan Nick Offerman.
The Cubs’ Game 7 victory came with plenty of drama, including an extra-inning rain delay and a dramatic eighth inning in which the Indians tied the score after trailing 6-3.
Manager Joe Maddon’s team halted the longest stretch without a title in baseball, while also becoming the first club to overcome a 3-1 Series deficit.