Connect with us

Star Blog

Cowboys Sophomores: WR Lucky Whitehead

When you look at the projected starters for the 2016 Dallas Cowboys on offense, it is difficult to look past QB Tony Romo, WR Dez Bryant, and now rookie RB Ezekiel Elliott. For Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan, these are the three players that will most closely determine the success of the Dallas offense. However, a healthy passing duo of Romo and Bryant combined with the rushing attack Elliott will provide certainly opens up opportunities for other players to thrive against unsuspecting defenses. Perhaps no player on the roster fits this role better than Lucky Whitehead at the moment. Signed as an undrafted free agent entering 2015, Whitehead found his role by contributing mostly as a kickoff return specialist early in the year.

Sean Martin

Published

on

Cowboys Headlines - Cowboys Sophomores: WR Lucky Whitehead

When you look at the projected starters for the 2016 Dallas Cowboys on offense, it is difficult to look past QB Tony Romo, WR Dez Bryant, and now rookie RB Ezekiel Elliott.

For Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan, these are the three players that will most closely determine the success of the Dallas offense. However, a healthy passing duo of Romo and Bryant combined with the rushing attack Elliott will provide certainly opens up opportunities for other players to thrive against unsuspecting defenses.

Perhaps no player on the roster fits this role better than Lucky Whitehead at the moment. Signed as an undrafted free agent entering 2015, Whitehead found his role by contributing mostly as a kickoff return specialist early in the year. As the offense continued to struggle to move the ball consistently without Tony Romo, Whitehead was used more as a runner and a receiver.

The elusive and shifty Whitehead also began returning punts for the Cowboys, earning the trust of the coaches to gamble on his upside in place of less-than-perfect ball security.

//insidethestar.com/lucky-whitehead-is-an-expanded-role-with-cowboys-ahead/

Now entering his second season, Lucky can hope to make the same special teams contributions as he did in 2015 while also getting more work in the offense.

The possibilities are truly endless when it comes to utilizing Lucky Whitehead in the Cowboys offense. With Tony Romo back on the field, defenses are already going to be hesitant about stacking the box against Ezekiel Elliott. While the Cowboys offensive line springs Elliott to the second level of the defense easily on a consistent basis, it opens up outside and misdirection running plays for Whitehead - who can capture the edge against the fastest of defenders.

If defenses do decide to sell-out against stopping Elliott, we already know what Tony Romo and Dez Bryant are capable of. Terrance Williams, Brice Butler, Cole Beasley, and Jason Witten are all also established targets for Romo to get the ball to. Lucky has a chance to also be one of these targets on shorter routes, offering a release against blitzes that teams will try to throw at Romo. This was a role that Lance Dunbar played early in the 2015 season before being lost for the year, and is now one that Whitehead can hopefully take hold of before Dunbar is available to return.

At its absolute full potential, the 2016 Dallas Cowboys offense is going to be one of the most fun units in the entire league to take in on Sundays. While Cowboys Nation awaits what's in store for us from Romo, Bryant, and Elliott, you should also keep an eye on players like Lucky Whitehead - who can completely change a game with one explosive play.

What are you expecting from Lucky Whitehead in 2016? Comment below to start the conversation!

"Cowboys Sophomores" is an ongoing series that will look at second-year players and their roles for the 2016 Dallas Cowboys. For yesterday's article on defensive end Ryan Russell, click here

Tell us what you think about "Cowboys Sophomores: WR Lucky Whitehead" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Boro Panther, Montclair State Red Hawk, and most importantly a proud member of Cowboys Nation! I host "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and wmscradio.com every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Twitter: @SeanMartinNFL.

Advertisement
Comments

Star Blog

Is Kavon Frazier Fighting a Losing Battle With the Dallas Cowboys?

Brian Martin

Published

on

Is Kavon Frazier Fighting a Losing Battle With the Dallas Cowboys?

Dallas Cowboys Safety Kavon Frazier has one year remaining on his rookie contract, but may not see the end of it with the same team who drafted him. In fact, it really looks as if he is already fighting a losing battle in Dallas.

The Dallas Cowboys signed Free Agent George Iloka and drafted Donavan Wilson out of Texas A&M in the sixth-round of the 2019 NFL Draft in the hopes of upgrading the safety position. That doesn't bode well for Kavon Frazier, especially after seeing his defensive snaps take hit in 2018.

After the arrival of Defensive Backs Coach and Passing Game Coordinator Kris Richard, Frazier saw his playing time on defense go from 21.24% in 2017 to 18.07% in 2018. It's not a huge difference, but it's pretty obvious the Cowboys value his special-teams ability, not his defensive play.

The way I see things, Kavon Frazier is a longshot to make the Cowboys final 53-man roster this year. At best, I have him fifth or sixth on the depth chart right now. Since Dallas typically only carries four safeties on the roster, it's looking as if Frazier could inevitably be the odd man out.

Kavon Frazier

Dallas Cowboys S Kavon Frazier

I personally have Xavier Woods, Jeff Heath, and George Iloka ahead of Kavon Frazier right now on the depth chart. That means he's competing with Darian Thompson, who is also playing on a one-year deal, and rookie Donovan Wilson for that fourth and final roster spot at the safety position. Unfortunately for Frazier, it looks as if the odds are against him.

Donovan Wilson has already had to step into Frazier's shoes while he was out in OTA's after having his knee scoped, and has been pretty impressive doing so. He has supposedly picked up the defensive scheme pretty quickly and is becoming a vocal leader on the backend. Being a younger, cheaper option, Wilson has a better chance of sticking around on the final 53-man roster over Frazier.

As you can see, Kavon Frazier is fighting an uphill battle with the Dallas Cowboys. It of course is nothing new for him. He's had to fight his way onto the roster ever since he joined the Cowboys, but this year just seems a little different in my opinion. It just looks as if the odds are more against him this time around.

I have no doubts Frazier will continue to fight with every ounce of his being, but if I'm being completely honest I think he's fighting a losing battle. It's going to be really interesting to see how this roster battle at the safety position plays out in training camp and preseason.

Do you think Kavon Frazier is fighting a losing battle with the Dallas Cowboys?



Continue Reading

Star Blog

Dallas Cowboys: The Case For Regression In 2019

Kevin Brady

Published

on

Predicting Dallas Cowboys Roster Locks, Pre-Training Camp Edition
Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

It's been a few years since things around the Dallas Cowboys felt this good prior to a season. Coming off a 10-6 year in which Dallas won both the NFC East and a home playoff game before losing a one possession road game to the future NFC champions, Cowboys Nation is expecting some big things in 2019.

After all, the Cowboys went out and improved their roster in multiple ways this offseason and brought in some new blood on their offensive coaching staff. Spirits are high among Cowboys Nation, and just about everyone is anticipating a two team race for the NFC East.

But some numbers indicate we should be thinking "not so fast."

The details of the 2018 season are not as pretty as the total picture. Rarely are they ever, of course, but these particular details point towards possible regression for the Cowboys in 2019.

Basically, their point differential a year ago spells out impending doom. (That was dramatic, but let's discuss).

The Cowboys were +15 in 2018, and by pythagorean wins expectation, they were about as strong as an 8-8 team (8.53 wins to be exact). This means they won nearly 2 more games (1.47) than would be expected, fourth most in the entire NFL.

This point is furthered when looking at their record in one possession games. Dallas went 8-2 when the game was decided by 7 points or less, winning close games at a rate that is simply not sustainable year to year.

These numbers make the Cowboys a prime candidate for regression in 2019, as they were in 2017.

Why The Numbers Expect Regression, But Success For Cowboys In 2017

Back in 2016, the Cowboys outperformed their pythagorean expectation by a whole 2 wins. The following season? Dallas finished the year 9-7. The model also indicated that the 7-9 Eagles performed 2 wins under expectations in 2016, meaning they would get back on track in 2017. As we know, they ended up winning 13 games and the Super Bowl the following season.

Of course, this isn't set-in-stone, and the Cowboys very well could outperform these expectations and avoid regression. This would mainly hinge on their coaching staff and quarterback performing at an elite level, carrying them through close games and winning more games by greater than one possession.



Continue Reading

Star Blog

Newly Acquired DE Robert Quinn Brings High Expectations

Kevin Brady

Published

on

Robert Quinn
Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Winning games in the NFL typically comes down to accomplishing two goals. One, being successful when passing on offense. And, two, stopping the opposing team's passing game.

The Cowboys set out to accomplish that second goal this offseason, re-signing defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence, and trading for veteran pass rusher Robert Quinn. Quinn, who tallied 6.5 sacks last season for the Miami Dolphins, is one of the leagues more feared rushers when at his best. The former All Pro has multiple 10+ sack seasons under his belt, including a whopping 19 in 2013.

And, as expected, the Cowboys coaching staff is ecstatic to have such a respected pass rushing specialist on their roster.

“He’s got that first step. He’s an established pass rusher in this league, so he’s going to bring some good stuff for us.” - Cowboys defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli.

The Cowboys acquired Robert Quinn for a 2020 6th round pick, which could end up being the steal of the offseason. Quinn has played with some top-notch pass rushers in the past, and each time they have brought out the best in his own game.

Back with the Rams in 2017, when Aaron Donald was on the same defensive line, Quinn got to the quarterback 8.5 times. And, last season, he remained consistent in his sack totals playing alongside Cameron Wake. Now he joins a DeMarcus Lawrence who has 25 sacks over the last 2 seasons.

"I think it was kind of one of those where I get to have fun, pin my ears back and just disrupt the backfield, which is what they want us to do." - Robert Quinn told NFL.com. 

Quinn and the always dominant Lawrence will form an impressive defensive end duo on passing downs, with the potential to be one of the best in all of football. Dallas is also hoping to add Randy Gregory into this mix, a piece which could prove vital late in football games if he is able to return from his current indefinite suspension.

Whether or not Gregory finds his way back onto the field, though, this defensive front will be in good hands. The edge combo of Quinn and Lawrence, combined with a plethora of skilled interior rushers such as Maliek Collins, gives the Cowboys a fearsome defensive line which should keep quarterbacks uncomfortable every Sunday.



Continue Reading



Enjoy 40% commissions on officially licensed products as a FanPrint affiliate. You can even make your own, fully licensed Cowboys and player designs! Get started here

Trending