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Coaches’ “Dislike” of TE Rico Gathers Won’t Keep Him Off Roster

Last year, there was talk that the Dallas Cowboys had developed a sour taste regarding Tight End Rico Gathers. Whether it was his personality, work ethic or off-field activities, and if those reports are even accurate, it doesn't really matter. has shown that NFL coaches will tolerate plenty if a player can help them on the field.

Most analysts have Gathers not making the Cowboys' in 2019. It means the end of a three-year development project that started when Dallas used a 2016 6th-round pick to take the former Baylor basketball player, hoping to convert his size and athleticism into a capable tight end.

If these are Rico's last few months with the Cowboys, don't blame his exit on any personal dislike on the part of the coaches. He will be gone for football reasons.

Do we think was fond of , who the Cowboys signed amid scandal in 2015? Do we think he always loved the way handled himself? And what about all the other players who we knew so little about personally, but Garrett and his staff saw on a daily basis?

If Gathers gets cut, it's because and are better than he is. It's because Dallas didn't see enough need or value to keep four tight ends this year after 's return.

Or maybe they'll see something in another former basketball player, Codey McElroy, that Gathers just hasn't developed over these last three years.

Has TE Rico Gathers Developed Enough To Earn A Roster Spot?
Dallas Cowboys TE Rico Gathers

Of course, the reasons why the coaches may be down on Rico could also be why he hasn't developed enough. If they feel he isn't serious enough about the game, that opinion is largely based on his lack of progress.

Look at what the Cowboys have been willing to deal with the last few years regarding , who has plenty of personal issues but has worked hard when available. that with , whose lack of effort is why Dallas chose to let him walk in .

Even before Garrett's tenure as , Dallas has been willing to business with guys like , , and Tank Johnson despite known personality issues from previous teams. The Cowboys, like almost any NFL teams, are happy to work with just about anyone who can help them win.

So if we get to final cuts this year and Rico Gathers is released, as expected, don't go down the wrong mental path about why it happened. Don't start blaming Jason Garrett for being unable or unwilling to deal with certain personality types.

It will be about football. It will be because Gathers didn't become good enough of a player.

And after this much time, the blame for that will fall entirely on Rico. He's had more opportunity here than a lot of 6th-round picks get; the Cowboys have clearly been invested in seeing him succeed.

We've all been intrigued at what Rico Gathers could become, especially after some of his big plays. But it appears the experiment is soon to end, and it will certainly be a disappointment.

Just be sure you blame the right person.

What do you think?

Jess Haynie

Written by Jess Haynie

Cowboys fan since 1992, blogger since 2011. Bringing you the objectivity of an outside perspective with the passion of a die-hard fan. I love to talk to my readers, so please comment on any article and I'll be sure to respond!

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