Dak Prescott’s jersey patch, explained: Why Cowboys QB wears Walter Payton Man of the Year logo for 2023

Dak Prescott is in his eighth season as an NFL starting quarterback, but many have noticed that the veteran quarterback has a new addition to his uniform for 2023. That comes in the form of a special, exclusive jersey patch.

Prescott has a uniform decal in the shape of the Walter Payton Man of the Year trophy. He has earned the right to wear this after taking home the NFL’s most prestigious honor in wake of the 2022 season.

And as long as Prescott is an active NFL player, he will be permitted to sport that patch on his jersey.

But how does the Walter Payton Man of the Year jersey patch work, and which players are allowed to wear it? Here’s what to know about the jersey patches and helmet decals that will be on display during the 2023 NFL season.

Dak Prescott jersey patch, explained

Dak Prescott is among those wearing a Walter Payton Man of the Year patch because of an NFL rule that was instituted in 2017.

The NFL, wanting to bring attention to what the league considers its most prestigious award, ruled that active players who have won the Walter Payton Man of the Year award are allowed to wear a special jersey patch calling attention to that award. The patch comes in the shape of the Walter Payton trophy and is displayed on the top left side of the player’s jersey.

In addition to the jersey patch, the NFL has special helmet decals that are given out to each team’s nominee for the award once announced. Those nominations are typically revealed near the midpoint of the season.

Walter Payton Man of the Year winners by year

Prescott is the most recent winner of the award and is one of three active NFL players who have earned the right to wear the jersey patch. The other two are Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson and Falcons defensive end Calais Campbell, who won the award in 2020 and 2018 respectively.

Below is the full list of Walter Payton Man of the Year award winners dating back to 1970. There have been three years — 2000, 2006 and 2016 — where multiple players have won the award.

Year Player Position Team
1970 Johnny Unitas Quarterback Baltimore Colts
1971 John Hadl Quarterback San Diego Chargers
1972 Willie Lanier Linebacker Kansas City Chiefs
1973 Len Dawson Quarterback Kansas City Chiefs
1974 George Blanda Quarterback Oakland Raiders
1975 Ken Anderson Quarterback Cincinnati Bengals
1976 Franco Harris Running back Pittsburgh Steelers
1977 Walter Payton Running back Chicago Bears
1978 Roger Staubach Quarterback Dallas Cowboys
1979 Joe Greene Defensive tackle Pittsburgh Steelers
1980 Harold Carmichael Wide receiver Philadelphia Eagles
1981 Lynn Swann Wide receiver Pittsburgh Steelers
1982 Joe Theismann Quarterback Washington Redskins
1983 Rolf Benirschke Kicker San Diego Chargers
1984 Marty Lyons Defensive tackle New York Jets
1985 Dwight Stephenson Center Miami Dolphins
1986 Reggie Williams Linebacker Cincinnati Bengals
1987 Dave Duerson Safety Chicago Bears
1988 Steve Largent Wide receiver Seattle Seahawks
1989 Warren Moon Quarterback Houston Oilers
1990 Mike Singletary Linebacker Chicago Bears
1991 Anthony Muñoz Offensive tackle Cincinnati Bengals
1992 John Elway Quarterback Denver Broncos
1993 Derrick Thomas Linebacker Kansas City Chiefs
1994 Junior Seau Linebacker San Diego Chargers
1995 Boomer Esiason Quarterback New York Jets
1996 Darrell Green Cornerback Washington Redskins
1997 Troy Aikman Quarterback Dallas Cowboys
1998 Dan Marino Quarterback Miami Dolphins
1999 Cris Carter Wide receiver Minnesota Vikings
2000 Derrick Brooks Linebacker Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  Jim Flanigan Defensive tackle Chicago Bears
2001 Jerome Bettis Running back Pittsburgh Steelers
2002 Troy Vincent Cornerback Philadelphia Eagles
2003 Will Shields Offensive guard Kansas City Chiefs
2004 Warrick Dunn Running back Atlanta Falcons
2005 Peyton Manning Quarterback Indianapolis Colts
2006 Drew Brees Quarterback New Orleans Saints
  LaDainian Tomlinson Running back San Diego Chargers
2007 Jason Taylor Defensive end Miami Dolphins
2008 Kurt Warner Quarterback Arizona Cardinals
2009 Brian Waters Offensive guard Kansas City Chiefs
2010 Madieu Williams Safety Minnesota Vikings
2011 Matt Birk Center Baltimore Ravens
2012 Jason Witten Tight end Dallas Cowboys
2013 Charles Tillman Cornerback Chicago Bears
2014 Thomas Davis Sr. Linebacker Carolina Panthers
2015 Anquan Boldin Wide receiver San Francisco 49ers
2016 Larry Fitzgerald Wide receiver Arizona Cardinals
  Eli Manning Quarterback New York Giants
2017 J. J. Watt Defensive end Houston Texans
2018 Chris Long Defensive end Philadelphia Eagles
2019 Calais Campbell Defensive end Jacksonville Jaguars
2020 Russell Wilson Quarterback Seattle Seahawks
2021 Andrew Whitworth Offensive tackle Los Angeles Rams
2022 Dak Prescott Quarterback Dallas Cowboys

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