It’s going to be really interesting to see if a new coaching staff changes up the way the Dallas Cowboys approach free agency this year. In the past few seasons the Cowboys have mainly been bargain bin shoppers, but maybe Mike McCarthy and company believes there’s a better way of doing things.
Today, I want to take a look at free agency and some of the current free agents with ties to the Dallas Cowboys new coaching staff. You know, players like Randall Cobb and Joe Thomas who have played for the Dallas Cowboys and under Mike McCarthy with the Green Bay Packers. Let’s take those two out of the equation right now though and look at some other potential FA targets.
Let’s get started…
A.J. Klein, Linebacker
A.J. Klein spent the last three seasons with the New Orleans Saints, where new Dallas Cowboys Defensive Coordinator Mike Nolan served as the linebackers coach. The Cowboys could use more depth behind starters Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch and Klein could be an intriguing option. At 29 he likely wouldn’t break the bank and he could help Smith and LVE transition into Nolan’s way of doing things. Insurance policy for LVE?
Blake Martinez, Linebacker
Blake Martinez is probably going to be looking for more of a starting role in 2020 and will likely be out of the Dallas Cowboys price range. However, he could become more of an option if they have any concerns about LVE’s long-term health. He spent the first three years of his career with Mike McCarthy in Green Bay and could possibly look to rejoin him in Dallas to help fortify/stabilize the Cowboys LB position.
Mike Daniels, Defensive Tackle
The Dallas Cowboys are in desperate need of more depth at the defensive tackle position and Mike Daniels will not only provide that, but be a huge upgrade over what they’ve deployed in years past. He played under Mike McCarthy from 2012-2018, but spent last season with the Detroit Lions. Could a reunion be in order?
David Onyemata, Defensive Tackle
David Onyemata has been with the New Orleans Saints the last four seasons, where Mike Nolan just so happened to serve as the linebackers coach. Onyemata is coming off his best season in the NFL (32 tackles, 3 QB sacks) and could be a solid rotational piece in Dallas. This could be one of the bargain bin signings they’ve made in free agency the past few years.
Tramon Williams, Cornerback
With Byron Jones and Anthony Brown possibly leaving in free agency, the Cowboys could use some more depth at the cornerback position. At 36 years old, Tramon Williams could provide just that. His starting days are likely coming to an end, but Mike McCarthy could convince him to hang around for another year or two. They have spent several years together already (2006-2014, 2018).
Eli Apple, Cornerback
Don’t laugh Cowboys Nation, but Eli Apple could actually be a solid free agent signing by the Dallas Cowboys. He hasn’t actually lived up to his first-round billing with either the New York Giants or the New Orleans Saints, but an argument could be made he’s been just as good Chidobe Awuzie. If the price is right, he could follow Mike Nolan to Dallas.
P.J. Williams, Cornerback
P.J. Williams is another former New Orleans Saints cornerback the Dallas Cowboys could try to lure in free agency thanks to his connection with Mike Nolan. I’d actually prefer going after Williams over Eli Apple, but I wouldn’t fault the Cowboys for going after either. Williams has mainly been a nickel CB with the Saints, which could make this move unlikely because of Jourdan Lewis.
Vonn Bell, Safety
Instead of trying to trade for Jamal Adams or draft a safety in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys could choose to reunite Vonn Bell and Mike Nolan in Dallas. Bell would without a doubt upgrade the safety position. And, given how the market for free agent safeties has been the past few years, could come at an affordable price. Could be a win-win for both parties involved.
Taysom Hill, Quarterback
If the Dallas Cowboys try to upgrade the QB2 position behind Dak Prescott through free agency, Taysom Hill is somebody I would absolutely love for them to target. I love the versatility he would bring to the Cowboys. He can contribute as not only the backup QB, but in several different areas as well like he has done with the Saints.
Mason Crosby, Kicker
Other than 2018, Mason Crosby as been Mike McCarthy’s kicker since he entered the NFL in 2007. Could that trend continue in 2020 with the Dallas Cowboys? Now a free agent, it’s very possible. Crosby is still one of the better clutch kickers in the league and with the unknown surrounding the Cowboys kicking situation, this could be another win-win situation for both parties concerned.