Last year the Cowboys moved practice squad quarterback Jameil Showers to safety, hoping to find a better way for him to make the team. After the personnel changes this offseason, quarterback may now offer the best opportunity. Dallas might want to consider a role reversal.
Showers’ transition to safety was announced in early October. After two offseasons with the Cowboys since being an undrafted free agent in 2015, Jameil’s proven to be a standout special teams player. He’s also been useful as a scout team QB when needing to prepare for mobile passers.
I’ve always felt that Showers looked competent at quarterback. His stats have not been great, but he’s often in bad situations because of playing with third-string talent or worse. When it comes to the eye test, though, Jameil has generally looked controlled and able to execute the offense when possible. His mobility is an obvious asset, also.
The move to safety last year was surprising but logical. Showers is listed at 6’2″ and 230 lbs., which is a small linebacker for many teams these days. Having played QB could give him unique insight for diagnosing plays from the other side of the ball.
At this point, though, Dallas has stocked up on safeties. Byron Jones, Jeff Heath, and Kavon Frazier are all coming back. They signed veteran Robert Blanton just before the draft and then spent a sixth-round pick on Xavier Woods, who they reportedly had a much higher grade on. The Cowboys may have a hard time keeping all five of these guys; there’s little chance Showers could make the team.
On the other hand, back at Showers’ old quarterback position, the Cowboys have not added much. Kellen Moore is returning as the assumed backup and then two undrafted rookies, Austin Appleby and Cooper Rush, were signed last week. It would seem there’s more opportunity for Showers to make an impact there then at safety.
While his 2016 injury should not having lingering effects, Kellen Moore is still just one bad hit away from leaving Dallas in a very bad spot with their backup job. It’s very possible that Showers would be a better option than either of the rookies as a third quarterback, or if nothing else the scout team QB on the practice squad. If something happened and a guy had to be called up during the year, Showers might give you more confidence than Appleby or Rush.
Granted, we still haven’t seen the rookies in preseason. One of them might do enough that you’re not worried about it. But if Showers remain a safety now until August, is it too late at that point to make the change?
It’s certainly not the biggest issue hanging over the Dallas Cowboys right now, but every player on the roster should be put in the best position to succeed. I don’t see a way for Showers to contribute at safety, but the road seems far more open at quarterback. They had good reasons to move him when they did, but there are compelling reasons now to reverse that call.