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Is Special Teams Enough for C.J. Goodwin to Stick w/ Cowboys in 2020?

has been the ' best player since joining the team in 2018. That was enough to get him onto the roster last year, but will the influx of new players at demand Goodwin be more than just a special teams ace?

Goodwin led the Cowboys in special teams tackles in 2019 and took the most snaps of any player. He was a true specialist as he played on less than 2% of the snaps on . Even when Dallas was dealing with at CB, they called up and gave him playing time over Goodwin.

Dallas thought enough of C.J. to re-sign him to a new 1-year contract this . This was especially positive for Goodwin after the change at , with replacing Keith O'Quinn in January as part of the major overhaul.

But that re-signing came before the 2020 Draft, in which the Cowboys selected cornerbacks, and Reggie Robinson. It also preceded Dallas adding and in .

Now flush with options at CB, will the Dallas Cowboys keep a spot open for a pure special teams player?

They did it last year with Olumba, putting him on the due to Goodwin's superior special teams skill. But while Donovan was an undrafted prospect, Dallas now has drafted rookies in Diggs and Robinson to add to , , and on the .

There have been rumbles that Awuzie could be moving to . Lewis is always coming up in speculation. But until either of those happen, Chido and Jourdan are the Cowboys' top two cornerbacks heading into .

Brown was just given a new 3-year contract and is a virtual lock for the 2020 roster. He brings versatility and stability to a depth chart undergoing major change.

Between those three and the drafted rookies, you're already at five players, and we haven't even dug into Canady, Worley, Smith, , , and others all vying for roster spots.

Reggie Robinson
Cowboys CB Reggie Robinson helping block a kick for Tulsa.

Perhaps the biggest threat to C.J. Goodwin's job security is Reggie Robinson, who enters the NFL with his own special teams prowess. Robinson blocked four kicks while at Tulsa and was a standout in coverage units.

If Robinson can come in and cover the duties that Goodwin had as a core special teamer, while also providing upside as a true CB option, then that becomes a fairly easy decision. That's far better value for a valuable roster spot.

But predicting the numbers at cornerback in 2020 is as hard as I can remember. A new throws out the patterns we've typically gone by, and all the new players mean it will be a very open competition.

Dallas is beholden to Goodwin from a financial standpoint. His contract is just for 2020 and only had about $330k in guaranteed money. Dallas can save $550k off the if he's released.

This isn't to say that C.J. has no shot at making the team. If he's clearly the best special teamer they've got then the Cowboys will find a way to make room for him. They have plenty of ways to do that throughout the roster, and especially now that we have the provision for 48 active players on game days with two call-ups from the practice squad.

This new rule is huge for a specialist like Goodwin. It creates an opportunity to be of value to a team when many situations didn't allow for it in the past.

So yes, C.J. Goodwin could still stick with the Cowboys in 2020 despite his limited defensive role. As long as he remains a special teams ace and isn't rivaled by younger prospects, he's the kind of player that John Fassel will pound the table to keep. And thanks to the new rules for roster sizes, keeping him will be easier than it's ever been.

Jess Haynie
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!

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