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TE Dalton Schultz Isn’t Flashy, but Still Key Factor in Cowboys’ Success

Last year, Dalton Schultz had to be the Cowboys' top tight end because of an to in Week One. But he's held that spot in 2021 despite Jarwin's return, and Schultz's numbers have him among the league's best tight ends so far this season.

The competition, if there ever was one, seems to be over between Jarwin and Schultz. Over Dallas' six games this year Dalton's played on 74% of the offensive snaps to just 51% for Blake. Schultz has been targeted 37 times as a receiver while Jarwin has had just 14 passes thrown his way.

But while the gap between the two tight ends is wide, Schultz isn't far behind and in terms of the . He's been 's third-favorite target, trailing receivers by just six attempts.

Give Dalton's big role in the Cowboys' top-ranked , it shouldn't be a surprise that he's also been one of the most productive tight ends in the NFL so far this year.

What's been especially noteworthy with Schultz in 2021 is his efficiency as a receiving target. Though only 7th in targets among NFL tight ends he's 4th in yards, 5th in catches, and tied for 4th in touchdowns.

Of course, Dalton benefits from being part of such a balanced and star-studded offense. Teams are naturally more worried about the wide receivers and , but Schultz has made them pay for any lack of respect many times this season.

With his contract expiring after the season, Dalton is building incredible momentum for . That's putting the Cowboys in a tough spot of having to decide how much they think the player or their overall offensive prowess is responsible for Schultz's success.

Dallas may ultimately decide to let Dalton walk this spring, turning back to Jarwin as starter and perhaps addressing the TE position through the draft. They may feel that any adequate player could put up the same numbers given the same opportunity.

That's a problem to figure out later. For now, there's no question that Dalton Schultz has been an important part of this number-one offense and the 5-1 record that Dallas currently enjoys. He's making the most of the opportunity during a contract year and the Cowboys are benefitting just as much as he is.

What do you think?

Jess Haynie

Written by 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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4 Comments

  1. Let Jarwin go and use the money saved to try to resign Schultz. I was never sold on Jarwin. He flashed some potential n a smallish sample size. Schultz on the other hand has been a very underrated player for us, and is an important cog for this offense. Always seems to be open, and besides the TD he dropped in the end zone, has good hands. Also a much better blocker then the undersized Jarwin.

  2. With Sean McKeon ready to return from IR, could Jarwin be a trade candidate?

    Personally, I like Schultz better because of his versatility (receiving TE, inline blocking TE, H-Back, and ST’s) vs Jarwin who isn’t much of a blocker.

    I’d re-sign Schultz now and trade Jarwin. There was a market for him a couple of seasons ago, forcing them to elevate him from the PS. Now that he’s healthy with no apparent fall off in ability, just in opportunities, they may be able to flip him and his reasonable contract for a decent player at a position of need (DB, swing T, C/G?).

    Brown is wildly inconsistent, same goes for Lewis and Canady. Steele looks to have made very good strides as a RT but can he swap to the left side seamlessly if Tyron gets dinged again? Nsekhe is neither a short-term nor long-term answer. Biadasz is inconsistent both snapping and blocking. Farniok is still a relative unknown as is McGovern who apparently is being limited to playing G and blocking as a 6th lineman or FB.

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