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Could TE Dalton Schultz Be Cowboys Biggest Surprise In 2018?

Kevin Brady



Dallas Cowboys Draft Stanford TE Dalton Schultz With 137th Overall Pick
Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The retirement of long time legend Jason Witten has left a lot of uncertainty around the tight end position in Dallas. The Cowboys haven't done a great job of preparing their tight ends group for life without Witten in the past, though they did draft one just last week.

That rookie tight end is Stanford's Dalton Schultz, and though he was only a fourth round pick, he's already being projected to be the Cowboys' biggest rookie surprise in 2018.

Ian Wharton put together a list predicting who will be each team's biggest surprise from their rookie class. His choice for the Cowboys? That very fourth round tight end, Dalton Schultz.

"The former Stanford Cardinal was never an overly productive player in college, totaling just 55 receptions, 555 yards and five touchdowns in three years. So expectations aren't for him to become a Pro Bowler, but he's also athletic enough to become more than a depth piece as a rookie. Schultz will be a contributor for this Cowboys passing attack in 2018."

Wharton also cites the Cowboys' current lack of tight end talent as a reason for Schultz's opportunity to surprise people in 2018. After all, he could very well be the 2nd tight end right after training camp. While Geoff Swaim is expected to be the starter, fan favorite Rico Gathers has been a bit of a mystery over the last year.

It doesn't sound like the Cowboys staff is too high on Gathers, which could give Schultz the chance he needs to gain playing time early on.

I doubt that Dalton Schultz will be the Cowboys starting tight end week one of the 2018 season, but I do agree that he has the chance to have a productive year, especially for a fourth round pick. Already rather polished as a run blocker, Schultz could prove critical to the Cowboys efforts to run the ball and control the clock.

He won't be asked to fill Jason Witten's shoes, but Dalton Schultz could prove to be an excellent day three pick for the Dallas Cowboys.

Die-hard Cowboys fan from the Northeast, so you know I am here to defend the 'boys whenever necessary. Began writing for a WordPress Cowboys Blog, and am currently a college student. Lets get going.

  • winstar

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  • John McClain

    I think that Rico Gathers is the future at TE. The rookie that should surprise is the second linebacker that they drafted Covington

  • Tommy Davis

    Absolutely ludicrous, this guy was not a productive player in college because he is not a very good player period. You folks amaze me, you would rather anyone play rather than the talented Rico Gathers. Dallas should be in the business of winning football games and to do that you play your talent. They should have given him reps last year backing up Witten whose production was on the decline due to his age. If the boys want to compete with the Eagles, Rams, Falcons, and an improved Giants team, the decision to play Gathers should be a no brainer. Gathers is a mismatch nightmare, 6’8 , athletic, fast, great jumping ability, and good hands. Adding a weapon like him to an offense with Zeke and Dak along with Beasely, Gallup, Williams, Tavon Austin and Allen Hurn would make the offense potent again as long as the O-Line performs like it did in 2016.

    • Will

      Our TE position is predicated on blocking. While I too love Rico, he will end up being our 3rd down TE as the pass catcher and end zone threat. Rico can’t block like an extra o lineman, Schultz is the best in this year’s class at blocking, and at the end of the day, our offense flows through Zeke, so don’t be shocked when Schultz starts

    • Hobbes49

      Wasn’t Gathers on IR with a severe concussion last year?

      • Tommy Davis

        Folks, no one has a concussion for an entire season, that was Cowboys management manipulation of the 53 man roster. Most games Witten was the only tight end dressed.

        • Hobbes49

          I am not saying the Cowboys didn’t hold him out for some other reason, but a concussion can most absolutely last well over one year from a symptom standpoint. Depends entirely on the severity. Doesn’t really make sense they wouldn’t have given him a shot if he was physically able.

    • Troy

      FYI Tommy…You cannot go by Schultz’s numbers. His Junior and Senior season at Stanford they played mucical QB’s. They really struggled at QB which really effected every players numbers. They have always been a rn first team, but much more so the past two years. He will be a good one I belive; good size, speed and the guys has good hands.

      Also, I am all in on Rico. Hopefully he can stay healthy this year as he was on IR all year with concussion like symptoms. The guy can be a beast if he can come around. He has all the tools to be GREAT…but will he?

    • GoNavyBeatArmy

      He wasn’t ‘productive’ in the passing game because that isn’t how Stanford uses their TEs. They use them primarily for blocking in the run game.

      How do you know Rico is ‘talented’? It’s ludicrous to proclaim a player who hasn’t played a single snap in the regular NFL season ‘talented’, especially when that player has never played TE. Does he have potential? Certainly, but there’s a ton to learn about the TE position, route running, defensive play adjustment, blocking, blitz recognition. Rico hasn’t had any experience with any of that and the injury he suffered last TC cost him an entire year of experience.

      • Tommy Davis

        Preseason prepares you for the regular season, and in case you did not see him, he excelled and blocked adequately as well. He ran good routes, created separation, caught balls in traffic and was just a beast. No other tight end on the Cowboys roster can do those things. As far as the blocking goes, 90% of Zeke’s running is between the tackles. Witten rarely blocked for Zeke from his tight end position. When the Cowboys run a sweep with Tavon Austin and they feel the need to put in a better blocking tight end, they can do so. But as far as the passing game, Gathers is a no brainer.

  • Will

    Couldn’t agree more. Schultz is more productive than most think offensively, too. I live in Nor Cal, and I went to a handful of Stanford games over the last few years. When Stanford used him in the passing game, he more than held his own

  • Hobbes49

    Real good article. But no mention of Jarwin in regards to guys already on the roster. The Cowboys called him up to keep the Eagles from snatching him, they must think he has something to offer

  • Mike Mcdermott

    Hope he can play some. Swaim the starter, really? That guy didn’t do a thing at Texas. Can’t believe Gathers, even without college FB experience, can’t start over him!

  • Ervinlang318

    No one was getting on the field if Witten had anything to say about it. Didnt matter if Novacek was his backup, Novacek was gonna have a season long concussion as well

Dallas Cowboys

Dallas Cowboys May Sit Atop NFC East for a While

Mauricio Rodriguez



Ezekiel Elliott, Lions

If there's one thing we've learned in the past, it's that NFL seasons are unpredictable. Unknown factors, injuries and unexpected "breakout" players can shift the way we saw the league just a month ago, when we were still watching preseason games on TV. After two weeks of regular season action, Cowboys Nation might be surprised to see their Dallas Cowboys sitting on top of the NFC East, but that's precisely the case. Not only that, but they could remain division leaders for a while...

Now, let's not get carried away here. While the team might be on top right now, they're not even 2-0 and it's only week 3. The Cowboys' offense played well on week 2, but terribly on week 1. It's way too early to judge how this season will go based on what we've seen.

However, there is no denying that they seem to be in a very good position to remain the NFC East front runners in the coming weeks. The Cowboys had more reasons to celebrate last Sunday besides their victory over the New York Giants. Both the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins suffered losses in their respective games, giving Dallas the opportunity to control their destiny.

As previously mentioned, though, it's only week 3. But the team's next three opponents aren't as scary as they seemed prior to the season's start. Through two weeks of the NFL season, the Cowboys' next three opponents are winless, sharing a combined record of 0-6.

Dallas Cowboys May Sit Atop NFC East for a While


Starting by the Seattle Seahawks, who have been a dominant team in the NFL landscape for a few years now but that simply don't seem like a very threatening opponent right now. The main reason why is their weak offensive line, which I expect the Dallas Cowboys to exploit just like they did with the Panthers and Giants. Russel Wilson is a tougher guy to contain, being one of the best playmakers in the NFL right now, but I trust the defense to handle him. They've done such a good pressuring quarterbacks, I'll trust they will continue to do so.

Next in the calendar will be the Detroit Lions. Through two weeks, they've struggled more than we expected under the reigns of their new head coach, Matt Patricia. On week 1, Matt Stafford threw four interceptions in a game that was in control of the New York Jets all night long. But it's not the Lions' offense that I think the Cowboys will take advantage of, but their poor run defense. They gave up 169 yards on rushing against the Jets on week 1 and 190 last Sunday, when they faced the San Francisco 49ers.

Ezekiel Elliott will have that defense dreaming nightmares before their matchup in week 4.

Cowboys Headlines - Dallas Cowboys Vs Houston Texans: 5 Bold Predictions

Finally, on week 5, the Cowboys will face their in-state rival, the Houston Texans. Surprisingly, the Deshaun Watson-led team is 0-2 after facing the New England Patriots and the Tennessee Titans. This might be the team that hands the Cowboys their second loss of the season. They have a balanced offense that will pose no challenge for the Cowboys' defense, but this could be a dangerous game for the offense.

The Cowboys will rely on Ezekiel Elliott for this one as well. On the defensive side of the ball, Byron Jones and Chidobe Awuzie will have to replicate their success versus Odell Beckham, only this time they will be facing Deandre Hopkins, one of the best wide receivers in the league.


Even though the Cowboys were terrible in Carolina when they opened their season, the defense has been looking so good that I don't doubt their ability to carry the team to victories for the time being. If the offense continues to improve, then this team might be able to take full advantage of the unexpected head start it got in the NFC East.

I can't say it enough; it's only week 3... but look out. It could take some time before the Cowboys give up that #1 spot in the division.

Tell me what you think about "Dallas Cowboys May Sit Atop NFC East for a While" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!

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Game Notes

#SEAvsDAL: Betting Preview, Trends, And Prediction

Kevin Brady



Cowboys Wishlist Christmas Edition: Seahawks @ Cowboys

The Dallas Cowboys found a way to get their first win last Sunday, defeating the New York Giants from start to finish, 20-13.

Now at 1-1 and locked in a three way tie for 1st place in the NFC East, Dallas is looking to string together a few victories and create some early separation. Seattle is now sitting at 0-2, and while that's typically a hole teams cannot climb out of in the NFL, the Seahawks will be desperately fighting to avoid an 0-3 start.

The Seahawks opened up as 3 point home favorites against the Cowboys, with the over/under set at 44.5 points.

Dallas Cowboys

After an abysmal season opener against Carolina, the Cowboys came out firing against the Giants on Sunday night. Dallas led by as many as 17 points in the fourth quarter, and ended up holding on as the Giants made a late garbage-time run.

Dak Prescott looked as comfortable in the pocket as he as in weeks, finding Tavon Austin for a 64 yard touchdown pass on the opening drive. Ezekiel Elliott scored another rushing touchdown, and the Cowboys defense was straight up dominant.

Now, the Cowboys defensive line has another chance to increase their sack total against the Seahawks' weak offensive line. And you know DeMarcus Lawrence is salivating.

Dallas improved to 1-1 straight up and against the spread, covering the 3 point spread set by Vegas a week ago. Both Cowboys games have gone under thus far as well.

Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks fell to 0-2 on Monday night with a tough road loss to the Chicago Bears. Khalil Mack dominated the Seahawks offensive line, dictating protections and keeping Russell Wilson uncomfortable all night long.

The Seahawks haven't been able to get much of a run game going this season, despite their insistence upon doing so. Russell Wilson is their offense, and if the Cowboys can pressure him and force him into hero-ball throws, they should have success on Sunday. After all, this was the Bears recipe for success on Monday night.

Seattle is 0-2 straight up and 0-1-1 against the spread this season.


  • The score total has gone under 5 straight Cowboys' games.
  • Dallas is 2-4 against the spread their last six times playing at Seattle.
  • Seattle is 1-5 against the spread their last six games at home.
  • The under has hit 4 of the last 5 Cowboys/Seahawks games.


While I've thought hard about picking the under for the third straight week (I'm 2-0 doing so), I'll pick the actual game for you guys this time. I think the Cowboys will get this road win and improve to 2-1 behind dominant defensive line play and a strong running game.

This match up favors Dallas in multiple ways and I expect them to take advantage of Seattle's weak spots.

I like the Cowboys +3 a lot this Sunday.

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Dallas Cowboys

Kris Richard, the Cowboys X-Factor Against the Seahawks

Brian Martin



Top 5 Storylines to Watch in Cowboys 2018 Season Opener 1
(AP Photo/Ron Jenkins)

In the NFL, wins are hard to come by. That is why teams do their due diligence each and every week to try to come up with some advantage, however slight. This week, the Dallas Cowboys may have the biggest advantage they could possibly hope for over their opponent, the Seattle Seahawks, and he goes by the name of Kris Richard.

The hiring of Kris Richard may have been Dallas' biggest offseason move. We have already seen in the first couple of games of the 2018 season the impact he's had on the Cowboys defense. The entire defensive unit has been playing possessed and has pretty much dominated their opponents. I believe Richard deserves the majority of the credit.

But this week is different. The Dallas Cowboys travel to Seattle for a Sunday afternoon game against the Seahawks, who are a tough opponent when playing at home. History hasn't always been kind to the Cowboys when playing on the road in Seattle.

In fact, I wouldn't be at all surprised if Tony Romo doesn't still have nightmares about playing in Seattle. A mishandled snap on a routine 19 yard field goal attempt ended up costing the Cowboys a playoff victory in 2007. Then he sustained the back injury that would ultimately end his career in a meaningless preseason game against the Seahawks in 2016.

To say history hasn't been kind to the Cowboys in Seattle would probably be an understatement. But still, that's where they're heading for this Week 3 matchup.

Kris Richard

Dallas Cowboys Assistant Coach Kris Richard

Luckily, I believe the Dallas Cowboys have an ace in the hole in 2018. I think their new Passing Game Coordinator and Defensive Backs Coach, Kris Richard, is going to be the X-Factor. Who could give you more inside information than someone who spent the last eight years with Seattle as both a coach and a player than Richard?

Kris Richard should know just about all of the ins and outs about the Seattle Seahawks, especially on the defensive side of the ball since he served as their Defensive Coordinator the previous two seasons before joining the Cowboys. But, his knowledge of their offense could prove to be invaluable as well.

Richard has seen the Seahawks offense and Russell Wilson on a daily basis in practice firsthand. He should have a very good understanding of not only their tendencies, but what types of plays they run out of different formations. It should be just like having a spy within their own huddle.

Now, having inside information is one thing, but executing the game plan is something different entirely. Kris Richard can possibly predict with high probability exactly what the Seahawks plan on doing, but it falls on the Cowboys players as to execute the game plan.

In the end, this game will ultimately come down to which team executes better on the field Sunday afternoon. The Dallas Cowboys may have an X-Factor in Kris Richard, but he's not the one suiting up against the Seahawks. It all falls on the player's shoulders, as it always has.

Do you think Kris Richard can be the Cowboys X-Factor against the Seahawks?

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