Every summer, NFL fanbases get too excited about some young undrafted rookie that could make the football team. Cowboys Nation is no exception. In sports, it’s always fun to root for the underdog. In the case of the 2019 Dallas Cowboys, some undrafted rookies have turned heads at camp and will do their best to get a spot on the 53-man roster in training camp and preseason.
The undrafted rookie with the most buzz around him seems to be none other that Wide Receiver Jon’Vea Johnson. The former Toledo Rocket has had a really nice offseason working with the Cowboys. Bryan Broaddus even said “This is a gifted player that is capable of putting good practices and games together to make the final roster.”
Johnson, who ran a 4.38 40-yard dash could be a solid addition to a Cowboys offense that could use another deep threat WR. The team has clearly been interested in him for a while now with Johnson having a pre-draft visit in Dallas and visiting him on his Pro Day.
But does Jon’Vea Johnson have a realistic chance of making the 53-man roster? It seems like a very hard thing todo. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t say this because I don’t believe that Johnson has what it takes to play on an NFL team.
But the fact of the matter is, the Cowboys WR position has plenty of competition. There are at least three absolute locks to make the roster before him. Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup and Randall Cobb. But the competition doesn’t stop there.
There are plenty of guys who should have a slight edge over the rookie. The first two that come to mind are Allen Hurns and Tavon Austin.
Prior to his injury in 2018, Austin was a contributor on special teams on the return game. His performance on offense wasn’t that impressive, but the Cowboys could keep him for his skills as a special teamer. Of course, Austin has to prove he can also be an offensive weapon. After all, fourth round pick Tony Pollard could steal a lot of playing time as a returner.
Allen Hurns is also in consideration here. Even after his injury, the Cowboys have decided to keep him around and could be a potential player on the final roster.
Austin and Hurns, despite the fact that they were supposed to be some of the main contributors to the passing game in Dallas last year, were far from that. Hurns recorded 20 catches in the season and Austin eight in seven games. Now that the Cowboys have a real starting three at WR, they’ll get even less playing time. They might be a lot of things, but indispensable isn’t one of them.
Aside from these two veterans, there are many young ones who could compete for those final spots at the position. Noah Brown has been on the team for a couple of years now. Cedrick Wilson didn’t play last year due to injury but also turned heads during the offseason. Lance Lenoir Jr. making the team would be a surprise, but you could argue he was close to doing so last season.
Overall, I’d say Jon’Vea Johnson will have a difficult road to the Cowboys’ 53-man roster but if he continues to impress on training camp, it isn’t far-fetched to believe he can end up on the team. It will heavily depend on how guys like Tavon Austin fare in what rests of the offseason.