Happy Monday, Cowboys fans.
Now that the NFL draft is in the rearview mirror and we inch closer to offseason workout dates, I want to paint a picture of who we fans may need to talk more about.
These players are solid at what they do and can help the Cowboys succeed in 2023, but sometimes they don't get the appreciation they deserve.
One of them is new to the team, while the other two have been around for a bit.
We clearly recognize Micah Parsons, CeeDee Lamb, Tony Pollard, Trevon Diggs, and others.
Nonetheless, the players below deserve their flowers and can help the team win games their way next season, and before I start, yes, I could list 7 or 8 players, but let's keep it readable for everyone.
Let me know what you think and who we shouldn't overlook.
This first name won't be as shocking as the others, but Osa Odighuzuwa has been one of the most underrated players on this team.
Odighuzuwa was picked in the third round in 2021 and has improved yearly. His rookie deal has him signed through 2024; the defensive tackle had four sacks a year ago and 43 tackles (27 solo).
His biggest moment was the sack on Brock Purdy during the NFC Divisional Round against the 49ers.
I added him because, from what I see, we don't give him enough credit for how well he has played. He continues to improve and will help this team in a major way in 2023.
Stopping the run was the biggest issue for the defense a year ago; he will be needed to help slow teams down.
Look, everyone, I don't understand how important Cooks will be to this offense.
I have seen the media try to downplay this trade for the Cowboys because it is Dallas. It would be great if any other team made his move at a position they struggled with last year.
Let's be honest here. The Cowboys had Dennis Houston and Noah Brown as their 2nd and 3rd wide receivers in week one last season.
Cooks has been in the league for nine years, producing over 1,000 yards in SIX of those seasons.
He comes to a team with Lamb and Michael Gallup. If MG can get even remotely close to his usual self, they will have one of the best trios in football.
I will argue with anyone about this; Cooks is one of the best players in NFL history to never make an All-Pro team or the Pro Bowl.
His numbers don't lie. The Cowboys will have two guys surpass 1,000 receiving yards this year.
Israel Mukuamu had an excellent ending to the season last year.
If you follow closely, as most of you do, I am sure you have heard the talks about Mukuamu moving to cornerback.
In the playoff game, he played 24 snaps in coverage from the slot against Tampa Bay.
Mukuamu only allowed 2 receptions from 5 targets for 16 yards and a passer rating of 48.8. That is enough to let him start the year as CB3, agree?
The team traded for Stephon Gilmore in March, but if you can use Mukuamu in the slot with DaRon Bland, look out.
I honestly don't think people fully understand how much better this team got in the offseason this year.
They have addressed every single weakness that hurt them last year.
They added a big-time wideout in Cooks, a former defensive player of the year in Gilmore. Resigned Johnathan Hankins and drafted Mazi Smith to help stop the run.
This team has a chance to be even better in 2023.