Offensive Free Agents: The Dallas Cowboys Have Key Decisions to Make

Of the 16 players set to become unrestricted free agents on March 13 in Dallas, six are on the offensive side of the ball

FRISCO — It’s hard to call the head coach’s first season Mike McCarthy in charge of commanding offensive plays for the Dallas Cowboys in 2023 anything that is not success.

Los Cowboys they led the NFL in points per game (29.9) and closed the campaign fifth in yards (371.6). Dak Prescott led the league in touchdown passes (36). CeeDee Lamb He set team records in receptions (135) and receiving yards (1,749). He and Prescott were finalists for Offensive Player of the Year. The second-year tight end, Jake Ferguson, enjoyed a breakout season (71 receptions, 761 yards, five touchdowns). After a slow start, veteran wide receiver Brandin Cooks He finished with eight touchdown catches. Tony Pollard He accumulated 1,005 yards rushing.

Not everything was perfect. The running game was mediocre. Pass protection had its problems. The wide receiver Michael Gallup He wasn’t very involved. The 14 rushing touchdowns were 10 fewer than those achieved in 2022.

Tyron Smith hasn’t played 100 percent of a regular season since 2015. Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Los Cowboys They will need to improve in 2024 on offense, and there are some decisions they need to make regarding their free agents. Of the 16 players set to become unrestricted free agents on March 13, six are on the offensive side of the ball.

Here’s a look at how dallas could deal with their respective cases:

Here’s what they know Cowboys: when Smith He plays, he plays well, but he will miss games. In 2023, he missed three games due to injury, and suited up for another, without playing, due to a neck problem. With everything and that, McCarthy said Smith He had his best season since he began leading the team in 2020.

And Smith If you want to continue playing, what type of contract should you receive? He turns 34 years old in December, and has been through a lot of injuries. He made $11 million last year through a restructured deal with money in the form of bonuses, salary and incentives. Would something like this work again in 2024? Would it be enough for the Cowboys for something like that?

Even if Smith re-signs, tackle could be a first-round need for the Cowboysespecially if they wish to keep Tyler Smith as left guard.

Tony Pollard, running back

He’s had back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons, but he wasn’t as explosive in 2023 as he was in 2022. Was that due to his recovery from a 2022 procedure on his lower left leg? Was it the running game itself? Maybe both? Pollard improved down the stretch, but managed just one 100-yard game this season.

Pollard He played the 2023 season in exchange for the $10 million franchise tag, but he likely won’t find that kind of deal in free agency this offseason. He might find it back to those Cowboys It is your best option. Even if he comes back, expect to see the Cowboys address the running back position in free agency or the draft.

It has been a strange situation. You woe has started in every game he has participated in in the last three years, and was named to the Pro Bowl in 2022, but there has been no real movement to sign him to a contract extension. It looks like he will be the third consecutive interior offensive lineman drafted and developed by the Cowboysonly to see him leave in free agency, joining Connor Williams (Miami Dolphins) y Connor McGovern (Buffalo Bills).

He’s smart and tough, but he may lack the power that men expect. Cowboys in the middle. If he is not retained, then the center position jumps to the top of the list of needs, right after tackle, in case they do not keep Tyron Smith.

He was the main substitute for Pollard and he had some positive moments, finishing the season with 89 carries for 361 yards, 17 receptions for 144 yards and four total touchdowns. But, he has had a hard time staying healthy since he came to the Cowboys in 2020. He could be more of a third-stringer than a genuine second, and could find better opportunities elsewhere.

McKeon He played in nine games, in part due to an ankle injury that landed him on injured reserve after Week 12. He’s a base player for special teams, and a solid enough contributor as a third-string player. tight end McKeon could turn into a low-priced one-year opportunity, but he could find a better opportunity with another team, especially with Ferguson y Luke Schoonmaker monopolizing the first two places in the position.

Due to injuries to Tyron Smith y Tyler Smith, Edoga He started six games. He found his place as the backup first tackle on both sides for most of the season, although he suffered seriously in the 22-20 loss to the Dolphins of Week 16. Cowboys They have selected young tackles, such as Matt Waletzko, Josh Ball y Asim Richards, in the last three drafts. It might be time to see if either of them can handle the swing role in 2024, or find another veteran later this offseason.

2024-02-21 18:12:33
#key #free #agents #Cowboys #offense


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