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Shane’s 7 Bold Predictions for the 2018 Dallas Cowboys

The month of July is the peak of off-season. will soon open up and then we all will get our first glimpses of the 2018 in the pre-season. Not too long after that, the season begins. This Cowboys team has been defined by their past two seasons, from the successes and surprises of 2016 to the disappointments and setbacks of 2017. The team has gone 22-10 in that time span and is now a team expected to make the every year.

It's probably unfair to expect so much of a team, and even more unfair to expect serious output from their players. But this is the Dallas Cowboys, and the expectations blow the roof off AT&T Stadium.

What can we expect from the 2018 Cowboys? It features a complete offensive line, a fully-loaded Ezekiel Elliott, a talented secondary, and a deep core of pass rushers. Maybe fans expect too much of the Cowboys, but maybe they expect so much because they know it's entirely possible.

These predictions are bold, but very much a possibility. The team has the skills to make it happen, and if they accomplish what's written, they'll be a force to be reckoned with.

Dak Prescott will have a top 5 QBR AGAIN!!!

What if Dak Prescott isn't Dallas' Franchise QB?

In 's rookie year, he had the third-highest QB Rating in the league. Unfortunately, 2017 was a setback. He was asked to target and Jason Witten more often, instead of spreading the ball as evenly as he prefers.

This may surprise you, but Dak Prescott actually had the 4th highest QBR in the league last season.

Despite throwing 13 interceptions, QBR is a stat that's able to decipher not only the numbers put up, but the plays the quarterback was responsible for. Meaning, if his QBR was that high in a “down year,” it means the bulk of the turnovers (interceptions/fumbles) were not his fault.

The Cowboys will go into the with an almost brand new group of tight ends and receivers. There is probably no true number one threat among the pass catchers, but that is a perfect world for Prescott. The more the merrier. In 2016, Prescott had three players with 90 targets or more. In, 2017 he only had one.

Dak Prescott will win games through his accuracy, mobility, will to win, and by not exclusively throwing it to just one or possibly two players. Big things are on the horizon for number 4.

There WILL be a 1,000-yard receiver

Cowboys Offense Finds Rhythm to End Minicamp, Hurns and Gallup Stand Out

Even though Dak Prescott will have more weapons to spread the ball around, it doesn't mean one of them won't eventually click with Prescott more than anyone else and become the most reliable weapon.

But who will it be? The team has options.

The obvious choices are Cole Beasley and Allen Hurns. Hurns has a 1,000-yard receiving season under his belt and will likely be moved back outside where he thrived.

Beasley is one of Dak’s favorite and most dependable targets, and it’s not out of the realm of possibility that Beasley could have a Jarvis Landry or Julian Edelman-type of season.

and Michael Gallup are the other logical choices. While Williams has left a lot to be desired, he is currently listed as a starter along with Beasley and Hurns. Following a season of scrutiny and off the field issues, he may end up playing for his life.

Gallup is the question mark. He’s got a lot of upside and is probably the second best route runner on the team next to Beasley. Including his big-play ability and large catch radius, Gallup could be in for a surprise rookie season and become Prescott’s favorite new toy.

Multiple Cowboys  will have 6 or more sacks

Cowboys en Español: Buenas Noticias para Jaylon Smith, ¿Fin de Randy Gregory?, ¿Adiós a Lucky Whitehead?

A good problem to have is when you have too many good players at one position. Who would’ve thought that group would be the pass rushers?

Two years ago, the Cowboys had a serious need. Their sack leader was , who had six all year. Present day, the Cowboys have an All-Pro in DeMarcus Lawrence, the return of , and a slew of dependable defensive linemen.

The Cowboys have players like David Irving, Maliek Collins, , , Charles Tapper, Lewis Neal, and returning. New additions Jr.,  , and complete a ridiculously stacked .

Lawrence, Irving, Collins, Charlton, Crawford and Gregory all look like the most likely players to get 6+ sacks, but with the talented depth the Cowboys have, don’t be surprised if even more names end up here.

Cowboys will send 5 O-linemen to the Pro Bowl 

Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, Travis Frederick, offensive line
Dallas Cowboys OL , Zack Martin and

Tyron Smith, Zack Martin and Travis Frederick are virtual locks each season. They are among the best at their positions and are always a safe bet to be elected to the Pro Bowl. They are three of the key components to the core of the team and they haven’t disappointed.

La’el Collins moved to right tackle full-time last season and had a mixed bag of a season.

The first half of the season, he showed potential but with a lot of growing pains. In the second half of the season, Collins seemed to finally get comfortable and played up to par with his talent. It’s arguable that he was a Pro Bowl snub last season, even as an alternate. This season, I think he makes that mark.

Finally, the Cowboys got a 1st round talent in 2nd round offensive lineman, , from the University of Texas. Many are also Longhorn fans, so much of the state was elated at the 50th overall pick.

Aside from Quenton Nelson, who was picked at 6 overall, Williams was arguably the 2nd best lineman prospect, allowing only one sack during his time in college. He’ll be plugged in at left and start immediately, completing The Great Wall of Dallas.

Jaylon Smith will be the best player on the defense

3 Reasons Why Jaylon Smith Will be Even Better in 2018 2

I must be insane right? With players like Sean Lee, DeMarcus Lawrence, Byron Jones, Chidobe Awuzie, and 1st rounder on the team, why ?

For starters, he’s healthy.

If we just go simply off each prospect based on how they were coming out of college, Jaylon Smith was the best. Had he not torn his ACL and MCL, he might’ve been picked at 4 overall in 2016 instead of Ezekiel Elliott.

The first half of the , Jaylon Smith was a bit of a liability. He couldn’t move laterally and was picked on in coverage. As the season progressed, his movement and speed got back to normal and he was tackling everyone with much more ease.

2018 will be Jaylon Smith’s breakout year and a sign of seasons to come. The Cowboys will be much better in 2018, and Smith will be a big reason why.

The rookie receivers will shine brightest

Cowboys Offense Finds Rhythm to End Minicamp, Hurns and Gallup Stand Out 1

Michael Gallup and Cedrick Wilson were both receivers that I was very high on going into the draft.  So obviously, I was elated when they were both selected by the Cowboys.

Michael Gallup is an eventual-number one receiver in an where route running is essential for Dak Prescott. Not only is Gallup a fantastic route runner, he has some of the best hands of this year's rookie class. I don’t know if he’ll ever be a Pro Bowl receiver but I do know his upside is that of a potential game-breaker in this offense.

Cedrick Wilson has a lot of similarities with Gallup; he's quick, a good route runner, and has good hands. One area where Wilson has the advantage is his down-the-field ability. He made a lot of big plays at Boise State and I hope he gets chances to showcase it his rookie year.

By the end of the year, at least one of these two will be a starter. By the end of next season, I expect the other to as well.

The Cowboys will have the best secondary in the NFL

Is Kris Richard Jason Garrett's Replacement, Not Rod Marinelli's?

Hiring Kris Richard was the best off-season moves the Cowboys made.

Richard helped create the Legion of Boom in Seattle, but that took time to gather the talent and make it all work. The new secondary coach — and eventual successor of the job — already has a built machine. It just needs to run.

In Dallas, he’s got plenty of talented players already. Byron Jones, Chidobe Awuzie, and Jourdan Lewis give him maybe the best young trio of corners in the league. At , he’s got more potential than skills. is the ballhawk they need, Kavon Frazier is the hard-hitter, and then there's the G.O.A.T. himself, Jeff Heath.

After the Cowboys complete the trade with Seattle to obtain Earl Thomas by giving them a player (possibly Terrance Williams) and a 3rd round pick, the secondary will be complete and become the next elite group in the NFL. It will be scary good.

Shane Carter
Shane Carter
Lifelong Cowboys fan, who doesn’t mind telling the harsh truth. I’ve got a Bachelors Degree in Electronic Media and Communications from Texas Tech University. I welcome all opinions but I will shut down any troll.

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Christopher Speirer

For someone who doesn’t mind telling the hard truth you sure do enjoy writing fairy tales. Best secondary in the NFL, why not just make one of your “bold predictions a Super Bowl win?? That would be more plausable. If Jaylon Smith is the best player on the defense the Cowboys will be 3-13.

Michael Barthel

Really? Jaylon smith was the best defensive player coming out of the college before the injury if he had no injury he wouldn’t even be in Dallas right now. Smith has all the tools to be the best player on this defense especially since he is teamed with lee lawrence lve Awuzie Lewis woods and very talented defensive line. Who knows Dallas could sign a safety or trade for Thomas and make this defense even better. But to say Dallas would be 3-13 if smith is best player is a huge understatement

Christopher Speirer

Assuming that Jaylon Smith will be able to play with the same range of mobility tha he played with at Notre Dame is beyond wishful thinking. He may not be playing with his foot brace this year, but that doesn’t mean he will have a full range of motion in that leg. He is likely to only be a two down player because of his limited lateral movement. At best his leg is 85% healed at this point no matter what he proclaims it to be. If players like Lawrence, Awuzie, Lee and at least one other player on the Dline aren’t clearly better than Jaylon Smith, then the Cowboys are in big trouble. That means there will be no pash rush (Lawerance, Irving, Charlton), which will expose the Cowboy’s safety’s. It also means the corners are getting abused (Awuzie). If the defense isn’t a strength than the Cowboys will be playing from behind all season and they do not have the offense (no receivers) to rally from large deficits. Be realistic


Wow. I am high on the Cowboys potential but slow down there. If any two of these predictions turn out true, we will have a great season. Give me Dak having a high QBR and the multiple defenders having 6 + sacks along with a bit of luck in the health department, and we are a playoff team.

Brian Moore

Just look at the source of the writer, Fans need to understand their are media personal who are on drugs. I like the Linebacker core as a whole, But without DT’s rotations, they will be pushed to second level and make it hard for LB’s to operate. Start reading different media sources is all I can suggest, writers in Dallas the worse when it comes to reporting the truth and stats speak for themselves.

Brian Moore

I am sure hearing a lot of talk that they don’t need a No. 1 receiver, but I am not buying that. Spreading the ball around sounds great, but when the chips are on the table you’d better have a guy that you can go to in order to make that clutch play. The most successful offensive teams have that player that no matter the situation, that guy is getting the ball. A No. 1 receiver also draws coverage away from the other receivers and tight ends or takes that extra man out of the box to help the running game. If a defensive coordinator doesn’t respect your receivers, there are now plenty of options for them to scheme in order to shut you down. Hopefully this offensive staff finds that No. 1 receiver sooner than later.
When Prescott drops back to pass, his top receiving threats will be Jaguars castoff Allen Hurns, perennial tease Terrance Williams, 2017 disappearing act Cole Beasley, Rams draft bust Tavon Austin, third-round rookie Michael Gallup and undrafted tight end Blake Jarwin. I can’t identify a single name in that group with the talent to start for another NFC East club.

Michael Barthel

There are a lot of teams in the nfl who don’t have #1 receivers. Who spread the ball around. There were numerous of teams who didn’t have a 1000 yard receiver last year. Dak tried forcing it to dez way too many times and look where that got him but when dez was hurt or not on the field dak made plays to other receivers like butler. So no you don’t need a true #1 and to say we don’t have one is not true cuz nobody knows how these receivers will even perform or who will come out of nowhere and be the go to. Perfect example Miles Austin undrafted and still had what 2-3 1000 yard seasons. So you can’t say hurns won’t or Beasley won’t or Gallup won’t cuz you don’t know

Brian Moore

When Prescott drops back to pass, his top receiving threats will be Jaguars castoff Allen Hurns, perennial tease Terrance Williams, 2017 disappearing act Cole Beasley, Rams draft bust Tavon Austin, third-round rookie Michael Gallup and undrafted tight end Blake Jarwin. I can’t identify a single name in that group with the talent to start for another NFC East club.

Musical Airports

This article is hilariously optimistic even for a Dallas fanboy. I especially like the “best secondary in the NFL” prediction—they won’t even be the 2nd best unit in the NFC East. The Cowboys DBs are going to be eaten alive this season!

Michael Barthel

So didn’t Awuzie have the lowest completion % against him as a rookie? Lewis balled out last year for being a rookie. Xavier Woods was not bad at all. Now you move Jones to his best spot with one of the best secondary coaches in the nfl. I definitely think your wrong now will they have the best No but will they get eaten alive like you say absolutely not. Dallas had a top 10 defense last year are you forgetting that? We have the pieces on defense to make this a top 5 defense just add another safety like Reid or Thomas.

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