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The Cowboys Perfectly Handled the Need for a WR

Mauricio Rodriguez

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The Cowboys Perfectly Handled the Need for a WR
Eric Hartline / USA TODAY

Although constantly bashed, the Dallas Cowboys' front office has done a good job the last few days by adding some free agents who will really help the team's cause in 2018. They've added players to help on offense, defense and special teams.

It's hard to say they're not doing a great job by turning their offseason around in this second wave of free agency, but the biggest upgrade comes without a single doubt at the wide receiver position. One of the most pressing needs in the team was clearly in the receiving department and the Cowboys' front office handled it as well as we could've hoped.

Despite having some very well-known names in the WR room, the truth is that Dak Prescott's offense needed a new, fresh guy to provide this group a much-needed spark.

Dez Bryant has struggled to get back to his old self, Cole Beasley failed to replicate his 2016 monster season last year when he started facing double-teams constantly, and Terrance Williams has yet to prove he can be a reliable target on a consistent basis.

Now, the Cowboys are bringing in the former Jaguar WR Allen Hurns in an effort to create the "Dak-friendly offense" we've all been talking about.

Naturally, everyone in Cowboys Nation is happy about the move. Year after year, we see a conservative approach to free agency and how some big time players never even look like a target for the front office.

This time, though, America's Team stole Allen Hurns for a very friendly two-year deal that's only worth up to $12M.

Todd Archer on Twitter

Allen Hurns has officially signed the deal with the Cowboys. The two-year deal is worth up to $12 million and includes a $2.5 million signing bonus that is the only guaranteed money. Hurns will count $4.375 million against the cap in 2018. https://t.co/YMo0hMZP22

Even though many fans are convinced Hurns is the replacement for Dez Bryant, that doesn't seem to be the case. It really shouldn't be. While Bryant hasn't really justified his salary hit, the truth is the Cowboys don't get any better on the field without him.

If we stick to football here, this team's offense has the opportunity to be one of the league's best if Hurns and Bryant can be on the field at the same time. As mentioned earlier, Hurns will be the spark this team definitely needs.

Could Special Coach Help Dez Bryant's Route Running?

Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant

Teams will now have a hard time double-teaming Beasley, Bryant or Hurns while also being concerned about the game-changer that the Cowboys have in the running game with Ezekiel Elliott.

Bryant's deal is definitely not team-friendly, but what was a great acquisition by the Cowboys could end up as a downgrade if they part ways with #88.

Adding Deonte Thompson didn't stop WR from being a top need for the team, but Hurns did. With this signing, Dallas gets flexibility in the NFL Draft and can now stop thinking about Calvin Ridley or DJ Moore at 19.

They could still try to find another guy in later rounds, but WR with a Day 1 or 2 pick may be out of the question now.

Terrance Williams' contract provides him with job security. Due to his contract numbers, it's unlikely to see Dallas releasing him. However, could they get something for him if they decide to trade him? Probably not much, but if he remains a Cowboy, it's tough to see him getting a lot of playing time.

Dak Prescott, Cole Beasley

QB Dak Prescott and WR Cole Beasley (Tim Heitman / USA TODAY Sports)

Cole Beasley, whether we like it or not, provides the team with a dilemma. Ryan Switzer may not be as productive and as good as he is, but he sure looks like Beasley's clone and a guy who could easily replace him if the Cowboys decide to trade Beasley.

With Hurns on the team, they should really be looking at both Williams and Beasley as trade ammunition. What if you get really good value out of them?

The wide receiver room will be the most interesting this offseason for the Dallas Cowboys. There are some really talented players there that will have this coaching staff making some really, really tough decisions.

However, as far as wide receiver is concerned, they should be really comfortable right now. When "decision time" comes, it'll be about who are the best guys, not the worst.

Tell me what you think about "The Cowboys Perfectly Handled the Need for a WR" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



I love to write, I love football and I love the Dallas Cowboys. I've been rooting for America's team all the way from Mexico ever since I can remember. If you want to talk football, I'm in... You'll find me at @PepoR99.

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16 Comments
  • Juan “Tecneak” Perez

    Love your article agree strongly. Just keep doing what you’re doing .

  • Derek Robinson

    The COWBOYS got Hurns because he wanted to play for Dallas. He wanted to play with Dez. This could be the best receiver Corp in the NCF East. Maybe the league. A top notch receiver at a great price. Can’t wait to see, Dez, Hurns, Beasley and T. Will. With Zeke in the back field. “Pick your poison”

    • BUDDY

      Yeah it’s good in theory and on paper but last year it was the same thing and look how that turned out. Our QB is the issue and until they get someone to compete with Dak and really give that qb a serious chance to play then it’ll be the same shit just another year. The qb is the issue!!!

      • EverybodyTalks

        To me, it is really more an O-line issue than a Dak issue. Dak will continue to grow into his position. More important than the signing of Hurns are the Fleming and Morris signings. The hope is Fleming will be better than Chaz Green. Morris is back-up for Looney. I could see them having Chaz and Morris fight it out for starting Guard. Could also see them look for a Guard in the draft.

      • pdstix78

        It’s a coaching thing. Until the QB gets the green light to put his foot on the gas, this is what we’ll continue to see. Poor coaching easily cost them @ least 3-4 games. Same on the defensive side. It didn’t take a rocket scientist to discover Byron Jones isn’t a safety

      • Ervinlang318

        Dak had you jumping off your couch with joy in 2016 and Now he’s the only issue?
        Was it Dak Fault that………
        Dez and TWILL always batted up Balls that got Intercepted?
        Dez forgot how to run Routes and get separation?
        We threw on 3 straight plays on 4th and 2?
        Chaz Green allowed 6 sacks against Atlanta?
        Witten would run 4 yard curls when we needed 7yards?
        Every Team knew what play we were running next?
        Our coaching staff makes ZERO adjustments in the 2nd Half
        Our O-Line was terrible
        Zeke Was suspended

        I Can Keep going….

  • yamean88

    I was praying for the hurns signing, then coupled with the others, I think helped us to beef up the def this year in the draft and maybe just maybe get that up grade at RB position behind zeke, say maybe sony mitchell anyone or that big guy from LSU or even scarboro from alabama, case closed!!!!

    • BUDDY

      We signed a RB from Oakland last week. We traded a 4th or 5th. We won’t be signing a RB in the draft.

      • EverybodyTalks

        It was a compensatory 5th, very late round and you could call it a 6th, for that matter. Never say never. We carried 3 RBs and a FB last year. It is not beyond the realm of possibility for the Boys to take an RB in the draft. Olawale is being called a FB and a replacement for Keith Smith. Remember. Rod Smith has also played FB, so there remains a chance we grab a late round RB in the draft.

  • Travis Diggs

    I would start back up the Earl Thomas talks, push beasley and/or williams and some draft picks on Seattle( i mean we got 10 picks, do we need all of em??)

    • Steve

      I agree with you Travis on the Earl Thomas talks, I believe JJ will trade T Will or Bees with a 5th fo Seattle for Thomas and extend his contract to another 4yr deal maybe, it seems like they may happen or a trade up in the draft for James but I believe Thomas will be a Cowboy because we have signed 2 Wr’s now and that gives us 5 and I know we need depth but I see one of them gone because of Seattle’s need after they let 2 Wr’s go in FA. Also I do look for us to draft a Rb in the draft and maybe even as high as a 4th because Morris is gone and we dont have what u would call a threat left on the roster and after Barkley which is a top 5 pick no brainer you have Guice LSU, Chubb GA, Michel GA, Jones II USC, Johnson Auburn, Scarbrough Alabama so there are plenty to pick from and we may even get one in the 3rd if those first mentioned slip.

      • EverybodyTalks

        Seattle wanted a #1 and #3 for Earl, so why not jump up an get Derwin James in the 1st, with a possible 5 year contract? When you add up draft picks and contract, Derwin is cheap money compared to Earl Thomas with a HUGE upside.

  • Emilio Gonzalez

    Mauricio I like your article very true about what you’re saying couldn’t agree more keep up the good work, writing bout the Dallas Cowboys and yourself. Thanks,Go Cowboys.

  • Emilio Gonzalez

    Please let’s keep Dez Happy and Dak Prescott accuracy even better common DAK. THANKS

  • EverybodyTalks

    Great perspective on how the WR situation has changed in just a few days. Agree that T.Will is safe due to his contract. Dez is safe also. Beasley is definitely exposed. You are already hearing from the rumor mill that he will be traded to the Patriots, since Amendola is no longer there. The draft became a whole lot more interesting on where they will go with the #19 pick. The only thing I disagree with is that the WR is wrapped up. I think these picks create a security blanket for a Calvin or DJ or whoever to develop and eventually replace Dez at the end of his contract.

  • Russ_Te

    The Cowboys have signed 2 journeyman WR’s without speed. Not the solution. It only suggests they think it is, so won’t be drafting a WR high, and aren’t worried about stretching coverages.

    Then the prospect of paying Witten for years after he’s off the team and/or a backup. Didn’t learn anything from Romo about out-years on older players apparently.

    The Jones’s have done 1 good thing, Cameron Fleming. See the article, graded the best of 4 OT’s on the Patriots last year. He should be a big depth upgrade, and if a guard should go down conceivably Collins could move inside to fill that while Fleming goes to RT during the injury. This looks like a quality signing >

    https://nesn.com/2018/02/patriots-free-agency-should-new-england-re-sign-tackle-cameron-fleming/

    Rest of this off-season is abysmal. I got the “8-8 For The Next Three Years Blues”

Star Blog

Neutral Perspective: Dak Prescott is NOT a 1-Man Army

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Neutral Perspective: Dak Prescott is NOT a 1-Man Army

It doesn’t take a lot to cause an overreaction in the NFL, and fans and the media alike can be very fickle. Thus, when the Dallas Cowboys were beaten by the Carolina Panthers in week one the discussions surrounding their title credentials began, and even more so because Dak Prescott and his Cowboys offense was only able to score 8 points. He left the stadium still looking for his first touchdown pass of the season and wondering what went wrong.

By all accounts, Prescott wasn’t great, and his quarterback rating of 81.1 reflects that. His performance left the fans concerned and some asserting there were no shades of the Prescott of 2016. Nonetheless, a quarterback has to be helped by his offensive line, and allowing him to get sacked six times shows that improvement is needed up front.

In week 2, against the New York Giants, Prescott started the game with a booming 64-yard touchdown pass to WR Tavon Austin on the first series of the game. It was a play four whole quarters of football in the making and made fans explode in celebration following the lackluster performance against CAR. Prescott's rating jumped to 95.4 and he wasn't sacked during the contest. Even still, he threw the ball for 10 fewer yards than in week 1 and was 1.5% less on his completion percentage too.

Prescott’s best defense is the Cowboys' lack of stand-out wide receivers. The loss of Jason Witten and Dez Bryant – neither of whom has adequately been replaced – is the biggest cause of this perceived fall from grace. Those departures have undeniably created a problem, but one that many great quarterbacks over the years have managed to overcome.

While the doom and gloom felt by Cowboys Nation after week 1 has abated some with a victory over New York, for a franchise that has enjoyed the often wow-worthy play of Tony Romo, Dak Prescott has a way to go yet, to say the least.

Dak Prescott's Top 10 Plays of the Dallas Cowboys' 2016 Season

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

The current situation is difficult for the Cowboys, but there are also psychological mitigations. One of these is their presence in a division with the reigning Super Bowl winners, the Philadelphia Eagles.

This has long since put the Cowboys on the back foot in the futures betting markets, with an average moneyline price of +210 that makes them the least likely team to win the NFC East division. Unlike betting on individual games themselves, the futures market is a starker reflection of a team's form, rather than the more reactionary moneyline prices on individual games.

Criticism, from experts and fans alike, always intensifies after a defeat, and starting the season off at 1-1 isn't always enough to overcome said criticism. So too will the moneyline price of the Cowboys besting the Eagles lengthen, although the rewards for keeping faith in the Cowboys to do that – if they somehow do – will be all the more greater if they proceed to underachieve.

NFC East Preview 2018 | T2F Podcast

On this episode, we are joined by Jon Cassel, a lifelong Philadelphia Eagles fan, to discuss each team in the NFC East (Dallas Cowboys, Washington Redskins, New York Giants, and Philadelphia Eagles) going into the 2018 season. SUBSCRIBE to T2F for more football content! SUPPORT us through Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/Time2Football Follow us on social media!

Dak Prescott Needs Support Like Never Before

The likes of Cole Beasley, Michael Gallup, Deonte Thompson and Allen Hurns aren’t going to be reaching the Hall of Fame, but they are more than capable of helping Dallas score more than 8 points in a game. Take away the opening-drive shot from week 2, the only TD pass Dak has thrown in 2018, and the Cowboys scored just 13 points against the Giants. It's hardly confidence inspiring, yet.

There have been numerous points so far where the Prescott of 2016 would have found the receiver, but for whatever reason, those throws just aren’t being made with any consistency right now. That is especially bad considering the breathing room that is given by an elite level running back, which can be found in the form of Ezekiel Elliott.

Zeke got the ball 15 times for 69 yards against CAR and 17 times for 78 yards against NYG, both of which have to be less than he would have liked. Yet, the Panthers were out to stop him, specifically, and the Cowboys offensive line couldn’t cope, which allowed Elliott to lack effectiveness and their quarterback to be put to the ground half a dozen times. The opening drive against the Giants certainly helped alleviate pressure on Prescott, but it's clear that the defense beat the Giants, overall.

These, however, are problems that an offensive coordinator needs to overcome, and Scott Linehan didn’t cover himself in glory either.

Ultimately, above all else, there seems to be a bit of disunity within the offense. The receivers feel unloved, the running backs face a lot of defenders on each play, and the quarterback must improve his accuracy.

These situations are where you need creative play calling and a unique approach.

Dak Prescott & Ezekiel Elliott: Top 5 Moments of The 2016 Cowboys Season

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

Spirit of 2016 Can Still Make an Impact

With every defeat, the next game is hugely important, in the mind if not on paper. If the Cowboys can step up and convincingly rack up some wins, then – as ever – it will start to go quiet.

One aspect that sometimes goes overlooked is the defense. Conceding 16 points against Carolina and 13 against New York should usually be more than low enough to secure a win. Thus, if the Cowboys keep up that level of performance, then they should win a lot more games than they lose. But that's because most offenses in the NFL are capable of scoring 20-or-more points a game. With the Cowboys defense performing as they have been thus far, the onus is on the offense the close out games.

There's a reason the quarterback position is regarded far above all others, and Prescott needs to carry the team with him to keep that winning feeling in the Cowboys’ locker room.

He needs to give the opposition’s defensive line more to think about, and make them fear the pass as much as Elliott’s or his own rushing ability. That will give his receivers more confidence and Elliott more space. If his offensive line isn’t doing its job then he and Linehan need to think of ways to get the ball out quickly and on target.

Doom and gloom often surrounds any first loss of a season, but if Prescott and Elliott can work together as they did in their first win of the season, then it’s going to be very hard to beat them, especially if their defense keeps playing to such high standards as they have.

Regardless, the Super Bowl is anything but a lock at this point, and the problems need to be fixed quickly, before "distant" becomes mathematically "impossible."



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Star Blog

Can WR Brice Butler Help Improve Cowboys Passing Game?

Brian Martin

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Can WR Brice Butler Help Improve Cowboys Passing Game?

In a somewhat confusing move, the Dallas Cowboys decided to re-add Wide Receiver Brice Butler to the roster in order to get something more out of the passing game, which to be honest has been pretty putrid in the first two games of the 2018 season. Something needed to be done, but I'm not sure that Butler is the answer.

I'm going to agree with my fellow Staff Writer, Jess Haynie, in saying that the Cowboys decision to reunite with Brice Butler makes no sense. Jess is actually much more polite than I would've been when I initially found out about this transaction. I personally hate the move and I'm not afraid to say it. But ultimately, it wasn't my decision to make and the only thing that really matters here is whether or not Butler can help improve the passing game?

With all of the questions surrounding the Cowboys receivers, Butler's addition just adds another one. Unfortunately, we are two games into the 2018 season and the receiver position still remains the biggest unknown. No one has really stepped up their game and with the exception of Tavon Austin's touchdown catch last week, there hasn't been any big plays in the passing game.

I don't really know how Brice Butler is supposed to improve things. Is he supposed to be the "go to" receiver now? Is he any better than what the Cowboys already have on the roster? Or, will he end up being more of a progress stopper? Like I said, he just adds more questions to be answered.

I for one don't see any upside in adding Butler. Yes, Quarterback Dak Prescott has a bond with him, but nothing ever really materialized there when #19 was here previously. He showed flashes, like he has at all of his stops in the NFL, but his inconsistencies couldn't convince the coaching staff to play him more. So, what's changed?

Brice Butler, Cole Beasley, Dez Bryant

Dallas Cowboys WR Brice Butler

The obvious answer here would be the subtraction of Dez Bryant and Jason Witten in the passing game. That's quite a bit of production missing that has yet to be accounted for. But again, I am still not buying into the Butler addition as a solution.

I know it sounds like I'm slamming Brice Butler pretty hard, but there was a time when I wanted to see him on the field more. Like many of you, the past few seasons I wanted to see him receive a promotion over Terrance Williams, but unfortunately that never happened. But, that was then and this is now.

Personally, I would much rather see Allen Hurns, Tavon Austin, or Michael Gallup be worked more into the offensive game plan. I just feel that we have already seen what Brice Butler has to offer and it just wasn't good enough for him to stick around before. It's time to move forward, not back.

There is a reason Butler was a free agent. I mean, he wasn't even good enough to stick with Arizona Cardinals, who probably have more problems at WR than the Cowboys. But who knows? Maybe I'll end up being wrong and he'll finally play up to his true potential and talent. Wouldn't that be great?

Now, this is just one person's opinion, but I just don't see Brice Butler improving the passing game for the Dallas Cowboys. I think the only way that happens is if Dak Prescott reaches the next phase in his development. Until then, I don't see things improving much. But, that's an article for another time.

How do you feel about the Dallas Cowboys reuniting with Brice Butler?



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Despite Seattle’s Record, Sunday Is No Cakewalk For Cowboys

Kevin Brady

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Cowboys Blog - 2016 Contract-Year Cowboys: DT David Irving 2

As Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson threw a game-ending pick six on national television Monday night, all of Cowboys Nation was suddenly giddy.

Somehow, the team which looked completely lost and inept offensively to open the season was now staring down a chance at a 3-1 start if they could take care of back-to-back winless teams.

The first of those winless foes being the Seattle Seahawks.

Though the last 5 years or so have conditioned us to believe that Seattle is a defensive minded, physical football team, more recent history suggests they’ve fallen off quite a bit. No longer are prime Richard Sherman and Kam Chancellor patrolling their secondary, or are waves of top tier defensive linemen cycling through during the game.

Now, the Seahawks are defined by a shaky offensive line, a lack of playmakers on the perimeter, and Russell Wilson hero-ball.

It’s an odd, and typically ineffective formula for winning games, but it’s the one the 0-2 Seahawks are currently stuck with.

Despite all of this, however, Sunday’s game will be an important test for the Cowboys. Though they were favored by 3 points last week, this game is the first time in 2018 that Dallas is truly “expected” to win. Ironically, they come in as Vegas underdogs, but it’s difficult to find informed football analysts who are on Seattle this Sunday.

This, of course, has more to do with how poor Seattle has played to open their season, but they’ve still been incredibly competitive in both losses, losing both games by just one possession.

Going to Seattle and getting a win is a task teams have dreaded for years, even before Russell Wilson and the Legion of Boom brought the Seahawks back to relevancy.Earl Thomas, Seahawks

Now when you add in factors such as this being Seattle’s home opener, and that they will be desperately fighting to avoid a potential season-killing 0-3 start, this is shaping up to be a very tough test for the Cowboys.

The young Cowboys need to handle their business the next two weeks and take advantage of 0-2 conference foes. These games will be huge down the stretch for potential playoff tie breakers and give them a chance to “fatten up” before entering the more challenging parts of their schedule.

Like two match ups with the Philadelphia Eagles, and running the rest of the NFC South gauntlet during the later months of the year.



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