Cowboys RB Rod Smith Should Contend for 2017 Roster ⋆
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Cowboys RB Rod Smith Should Contend for 2017 Roster

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Cowboys RB Rod Smith Should Contend for 2017 Roster

Cowboys RB Rod Smith Should Contend for 2017 Roster

While his brother Jaylon will command our attention this offseason, running back Rod Smith should not be ignored. After playing 17 games for Dallas over the last two seasons, Smith will return with an excellent opportunity to make the 2017 roster.

To my surprise, Rod Smith made last year’s team at final cuts. He did not win the fullback job over Keith Smith but still emerged as one of the standout players on special teams. When he was released in November, Smith was one of the leaders in special teams tackles.

The Cowboys signed Smith to their practice squad after injuries at other positions forced Dallas to release him. He remained there until Dallas signed Rod to a two-year futures contract in January.

A few days ago, one reporter shared a small tidbit about Rod Smith’s prospects for the upcoming season:

Justin A. Cohn on Twitter

Rod Smith tells me today he’s now a running back, not a fullback, with the Dallas Cowboys.

It makes sense that Dallas would want Smith to compete at running back. Lance Dunbar has left in free agency, opening up a spot if the Cowboys wish to keep four players there again. Rod’s special teams value could even make him a keeper over Alfred Morris, who has fallen down the depth chart and could be cut for $1.6 million in cap savings.

With Ezekiel Elliott‘s heavy workload and Darren McFadden back as the primary backup, any other running backs should either have special teams value or be developmental prospects. Rod Smith not only give gives you the special teams use but could also serve as an emergency fullback.

At over 230 pounds, Smith might even give the Cowboys a short-yardage option in case Elliott was fatigued or otherwise unavailable. Clearly, Rod offers versatility and we all know how much the Cowboys appreciate that.

Rod Smith

RB Rod Smith

It likely won’t be as simple as beating Alfred Morris for a job. The Cowboys should be adding at least one more running back to the mix, likely with a late-round pick or from among the undrafted free agents. While still just 25 himself, Smith will have to fight off even younger legs in addition to the veteran above him.

Still, with 10 games in 2015 and seven games last year, Rod Smith has been able to keep the Cowboys interested for a while. With nothing certain after Elliott and McFadden on the RB depth chart, he has an excellent opportunity to once again make the team.

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!


    It all goes back to a simple fact the front office lacks Scouting ability and an eye for talent. Sure they get lucky but to get a player that start right away is far and in between.

    • Jess Haynie

      Dude, I’m so glad you finally found a way off that island. A lot’s happened with the Cowboys since you were lost at sea. I’m sure you’re busy with other things, but I hope you can catch up soon.

      • TD4SPORTS

        What ? Are you smoking your own stash, don’t answer that…Dez, Dak, Zeke, Tyron, Fredricks, and Martin. Zeke was this year’s starter, they didn’t want Dak but they got Lucky he fell to them. Gregory and Collins was a given because of drug test and question about the murder of Collins ex girlfriend. Let’s stay there we got Lawrence and Gregory but they were suspended so how much did they help. Oh did I forget Williams the one when Dez went out couldn’t step up. I don’t get paid to write articles or interesting stories, I’m a True Cowboy Fan that follow my Boys !!!

        • Jess Haynie

          Byron Jones, Maliek Collins, Anthony Brown, David Irving….. I can list players, too.

          You guys really amaze me sometimes. The Cowboys are drafting better than they have in decades and winning more than ever, and yet you still want to hold on to these archaic notions about the front office.

          If that’s the definition of a “true fan,” then I don’t wanna be right.

          • TD4SPORTS

            Trust me You are Not Right and you Write the Articles, since the last Super bowl win please tell me how many winning seasons have we had. Better yet tell me how many winning seasons or playoff victories have we had with Romo. Your number will only Solidify my point that in that time JJ has been GM and like I said from my first comment they get lucky and a player that Starts Right Away is far and in between. I’m sure I named the ones that did because Malik, Brown nor Jones started right away and if you did your homework you would know Irving come off the Chiefs practice Squad. Yeah I’m a True Cowboy fan from Staubach, and Landry days and anyone that is know Jerry’s role as GM is our weakness. He is a Great Owner but the only problem he won’t separate the two because of his ego. We would be the first team with 10 Super bowl wins, look at the teams Jimmy had and look at the teams that won Super bowls in the Lasthe 10 years. Baltimore, Pittsburg, Giants, Seattle, Greenbay and the Patriots. J Johnson knew players, football and discipline, Our front Office and HC does Not but you believe what you want because I AM FOREVER A COWBOY4LIFE !!!

          • Jess Haynie

            You seem to be under the delusion that rookies start Week One all the time. This is hardly the case in the NFL. Do some research on that and get back to me.

            Also, I know perfectly well that David Irving came off the Chiefs practice squad. Why does that matter one bit? One of our scouts still had him on the radar and our general manager made the decision to acquire him when available. Talent evaluation and player acquisition doesn’t just happen for three days in April.

            Oh, and thanks for more drivel about Jimmy Johnson and the entirety of Jerry Jones’ tenure. We all know this stuff. He’s had plenty of problems and nobody denies that. However, things have taken a very positive turn since Jason Garrett came in and Stephen Jones and Will McClay have risen in their power and influence. Why not enjoy the present instead of living in the past?

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