As things took a slow turn into a lost season, the Dallas Cowboys find themselves in a weird position. They're only a half a game out of first place in the NFC East, but with all of the injuries to their offensive line, a historically bad defense, and likely down their second quarterback this season, there's little hope the Cowboys could do anything meaningful with their final nine games of the regular season.
So to get a jump start on the 2021 season, the Dallas Cowboys have begun the process of rebuilding this roster by tearing it down. First to go was Everson Griffen, who the Cowboys traded to the Detroit Lions for a sixth-round pick that could turn into a fifth-round pick dependent on production and playing time in his new home.
He's likely just the first of several soon to be free agents for the Dallas Cowboys to be on the move before the trade deadline on November 3rd.
According to Mike Fisher, who covers the Dallas Cowboys for 105.3 The Fan and Sports Illustrated, the Cowboys are looking to move other veterans like Dontari Poe and Daryl Worley. Both players came to Dallas with expectations they'd be able to provide valuable depth after the departures of Maliek Collins and Bryon Jones in free agency.
Neither player has done anything meaningful, much like the rest of the defense, and the Cowboys would be wise to see if there is any compensation to be had from the trade market.
But the Cowboys shouldn't stop there. They've got several players in the final year of their contracts that may not return in 2021, and so the Cowboys should consider shopping them as well. Players like Jourdan Lewis and Xavier Woods haven't really shown enough to warrant the Cowboys signing them to second contracts this offseason. They may not have been as good as we would have liked when they were drafted in 2017, but they could be solid depth options for a contender looking to shore up its roster.
From the Dallas Cowboys, their main goal is to begin the evaluation process for 2021. Who on this roster will stick around next year and have a place on the depth chart, and who do they need to move on from.
While I would like them to bring back Chidobe Awuzie and Antwaun Woods, if they don't plan on keeping either of those guys who are in the final year of their deals (Woods is on a one-year deal), then they should see what they could get in return.
With as many holes as this team has on the defensive side of the football and the offensive line question marks that will carry over into 2021 (Tyron Smith in particular), they need all of the draft resources they can get moving forward. Thankfully, they should have quite a few compensatory picks coming their way after the losses they endured in the 2020 free agency. It's projected that the Cowboys could end up with a third, a fourth, a fifth, and a sixth, according to Cowboys Wire's K.D. Drummond. Those picks, plus what is looking like a top ten pick in the 2021 draft, should get the Cowboys started as they attempt to rebuild the worst defense in the NFL.
Some players wouldn't make sense for the Dallas Cowboys to trade because of the dead money they'd incur to make the trade. Still, anyone else that makes financial sense where there is interest from another team, the Cowboys should highly consider moving them.
Sadly, all the Cowboys can realistically hope to gain out of this season is an understanding of where they're heading in 2021 with their roster. Where they can move on, they'd be wise to go ahead and do so.