It may be old news by now, but the Dallas Cowboys seem to have a knack for finding undrafted players that are able to contribute to the team in several different ways.
Quarterback Tony Romo is arguably the best rookie free agent signing the organization has ever made, but there are also several current players on the roster that have become key contributors as well.
Barry Church, Cole Beasley, Dan Bailey, La'el Collins, Ronald Leary, Jeff Heath, Lance Dunbar, and Lucky Whitehead all went undrafted and all have been able to find a place as either a starter or as a role player with the Cowboys.
The Cowboys' success at being able to find these players that have slipped through the crack is uncanny and I personally think there are a few undrafted players in this year's crop that could possibly have the same type of success.
In fact, wide receiver Andy Jones received the opportunity to practice with the first-team offense during mini-camp and could possibly have a chance of making a final 53 man roster. Jones might have a leg up on the competition amongst the rookie free agents, but it's another WR that has caught my eye.
Wide receiver Ed Eagan is a player I will be paying particularly close attention to during training and he is someone I think that could possibly be the Cowboys next undrafted free agent hidden gem.
Northwestern State receiver Ed Eagan was a premier kick returner in college He finished as the school's all-time leader in career receptions (177), receiving yards (2,228), and all-purpose yards (5,651). He was also the school's leader in kickoff returns (125), single-season kickoff return yards (1,045), single-season kickoff attempts (45), and kickoff return yards (2,922).
Sound like a player the Dallas Cowboys can use?
Ed Eagan was a last-minute addition to the Senior Bowl where he first met the Dallas Cowboys coaching staff. It's a meeting that is probably the sole reason why Eagan is now competing for a roster spot with the Cowboys organization.
After not hearing his name called in the 2016 NFL Draft, Eagan had initially committed to sign with the Buffalo Bills. Head coach Jason Garrett decided to step in and convinced him to sign with the Dallas Cowboys.
Eagan was an outside receiver in college, but was moved into the slot at the Senior Bowl. That is likely where he will be used in the NFL because of his size (5'11”, 193), but he has all of the tools necessary to succeed at the next level as either an outside or slot receiver.
One of the reasons why I like Ed Eagan is because of his versatility to contribute not only as a wide receiver, but on special teams as well. His special teams ability is likely what will earn him a roster spot, but don't discount what he can do as a WR.
His speed (4.32 40 yard dash) is something that sets him apart from other WRs on the Cowboys roster and it's something that makes him dangerous as a player. Speed is something that the Cowboys offense can use more of and Eagan definitely qualifies in that category.
Now, I think Ed Eagan definitely has a difficult hill to climb in order to prove he is worthy of earning a roster spot. I personally don't see the Cowboys carrying more than five wide receivers and with Dez Bryant, Terrance Williams, Cole Beasley, and Brice Butler locked in as the top four, it leaves a lot of WRs competing for that one last remaining spot.
As much as I hate to say it, I don't see Lucky Whitehead is a lock to make the team and I think that is who Eagan will have to prove he's better than in order to make the final 53 man roster. It might all come down to who is the better player on special teams or who can contribute in more areas.
Personally, I'm really looking forward to seeing how this battle shakes out between #13 and #85 in training camp.
Ed Eagan will definitely have to set himself apart from the other wide receivers, but there are a lot of things to like about him as a football player. That is why I think he could be the next undrafted free agent hidden gem for the Dallas Cowboys.
Do you think Ed Eagan is the next hidden gem for the Dallas Cowboys?
Please feel free to use the comment section below to share your thoughts and opinions on this topic. I look forward to hearing from all of you so that we can discuss this further.