Prescott embraces 'playoffs start now' mentality for Cowboys

FILE - In this Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017, file photo, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) breaks a huddle in the second half of an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins in Arlington, Texas. Prescott finally has a win without backfield mate Ezekiel Elliott. The Dallas quarterback still has two games without the suspended star, and no margin for error if he wants to get the Cowboys back to the playoffs. By(AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth, File)

FRISCO, Texas (AP) After 12 games a year ago, Dak Prescott had the Dallas Cowboys on a franchise-record winning streak, cruising toward the playoffs.

In the star quarterback’s second season, the postseason essentially started with five games to go, thanks to some early-season struggles and the three-game skid when star running back Ezekiel Elliott finally started serving his six-game suspension over alleged domestic violence.

Prescott, the reigning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, embraces the “playoffs start now” mentality as the Cowboys (6-6) prepare to visit the last-place New York Giants on Sunday a year after they were 11-1 with 11 straight wins on their way to an NFC-best 13-3.