CLEVELAND -- Backup quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys has been one of the most debated and important positions in the National Football League over the last several seasons, and with good reason.

Cowboys starter Tony Romo has experienced multiple collarbone and back issues throughout his career, and suffered a broken back in a preseason game that knocked him out of action for more than two months, but enter rookie Dak Prescott.

Prescott has more than stepped in for Romo, however, and at 6-1 over seven starts, has the Cowboys leading not only the East Division, but also, the entire NFC.

“It is fun, but I do not really think about the surreal part of it,” Prescott said. “It is where I expected to be. I have a high expectation for myself. I want to do great things for this organization. I felt like I could start at some point. It just happened sooner rather than later.”

Prescott has completed 144 of his 221 attempts for 1,773 yards and nine touchdowns against two interceptions, and the pocket has been kept clean by a talented offensive line that has surrendered only 11 sacks in seven games.

“It means a lot,” Prescott said of the offensive line. “Those guys protect. They protect their butts off every game. It is perfect. It is everything that I could have hoped for being a rookie quarterback in this league. They are guys that can help me communicate the protection. We have a great relationship as well.”

Because of the offensive line, Prescott has been able to take advantage of the talent around him, particularly wide receivers Dez Bryant and Cole Beasley, as well as tight Jason Witten.

“They are huge,” Prescott said of Bryant and Witten. “They are a lot of the reason of the success of me and of this team. Just having those playmakers that believe in you, that go out there and they work their butts off and you prepare every day at practice with them, and then, when Sunday comes, you all just let it loose and have fun. We have a great team chemistry.

“(Cole) is one of those guys that you really can’t coach up too much on a route. You just give him a route, tell him to go run it and you don’t even want to tell him how to stem, get depth or width or anything on a route. He knows how to get open. You just let him have the route and he will find a way to get it done against whatever coverage.”