Connect with us

Star Blog

Is It Time To Replace Taco Charlton With Charles Tapper?

Brian Martin

Published

on

Is It Time To Replace Taco Charlton With Charles Tapper?

With the 28th selection in the 2017 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys decided to take Taco Charlton, a defensive end out of Michigan. It wasn’t a huge surprise that the Cowboys took a pass rusher at that spot, but who they decided to take was.

Despite having all of the measurables and athleticism to play either the left or right defensive end spot in a 4-3 defense, Charlton was viewed by many draft analysts as a second round talent. It wasn’t a huge stretch for the Cowboys to draft Charlton 28th overall, but nearly everybody agreed that it would take time for him to develop.

Through the first four weeks of the 2017 season, Taco Charlton has been active every game, but has yet to make much of an impact. In fact, he has been virtually invisible. That is why I think it might just be time for the Dallas Cowboys coaching staff to switch things up and reverse the roles of Taco Charlton and Charles Tapper.

Charles Tapper has been inactive these last two games against the Los Angeles Rams and Arizona Cardinals, but it’s time for that to change. Taco Charlton simply isn’t ready yet and hopefully just needs more time to develop. Of course, there is always the possibility that he is a bust, which means the Cowboys wasted their 2017 first-round draft pick.

Taco Charlton, Charles Tapper

Unfortunately, Taco Charlton hasn’t been effective so far this season. He has played a total of 101 defensive snaps and just 1 snap on special teams. He has only been able to register 3 total tackles in that time and hasn’t been able to put hardly any pressure on opposing QBs. That’s not the kind of productivity the Cowboys thought they were getting by drafting him 28th overall.

Charles Tapper on the other hand seems to have been much more effective in the short amount of time he has been on the field. He has just 37 defensive snaps in two games, but has just as many tackles as Charlton (3) and a quarterback sack. He can also play special teams and already has more special teams snaps than Charlton (9). To me, that indicates that Tapper is much more productive at this point in his career than the Cowboys rookie DE.

Based on their pre-draft workouts, Tapper is clearly the more athletic/explosive player. Tapper and Charlton both weighed in around 270 pounds, but Tapper ran a 4.59 40 yard dash compared to Charlton’s 4.92. The rest of their measurables/workout numbers are similar, except Charlton has a 3 inch height advantage over Tapper.

The height advantage doesn’t really mean much though. Sometimes being the taller player can be a disadvantage. It’s all about keeping offensive lineman from getting into their bodies, so arm length is usually the more important attribute. In that regard, both Charlton (34 1/4) and Tapper (34 3/8) are very similar.

If you keep all of that in mind, Charles Tapper seems to be the better of the two defensive ends. He has been in the strength and conditioning program for a year and was able to drop his weight to around the 255 range, making him much more explosive. But, for some reason the coaching staff continued to stick with an ineffective Taco Charlton, likely due to his draft pedigree.

Maybe this is the week we see a change. The Dallas Cowboys certainly need all the help they can get with their pass rush, especially considering the Green Bay Packers are up next on the schedule. If nothing else, it would be good to get more tape on Charles Tapper so that they can evaluate him more during the bye week.

Do you think Charles Tapper can help the Cowboys pass rush?

ADVERTISEMENT

Level C2/C3 quadriplegic. College graduate with a bachelors degree in sports and health sciences-concentration sports management. Sports enthusiast. Dallas Cowboys fanatic. Lover of life with a glass half-full point of view.

Advertisement
13 Comments
  • Corey

    Yes it is time to see what Charles Tapper can do. Hopefully Charlton just needs time to improve and doesn’t turn out to be a bust. They already have a wasted high pick in DE Randy Gregory. I read that he has failed yet another drug test and doesn’t seem to be to concerned about ever playing football again. I said when he got suspended for a year that it was time to cut Gregory loose and move on, now maybe they will quit wasting their time on this loser and do just that

    • Brian Martin

      Don’t get me started Randy Gregory pick ha ha. I was extremely disappointed in that selection. I really wanted Frank Clark with that pick and every time I see him making plays with the Seahawks, I just relive that disappointment. But yes, I’m ready to see what Charles Tapper can do. He’s arguably the most athletic DE the Cowboys have on the roster.

  • Steve Johnson

    He is basically a rookie this year got see what Tapper can do at this point.

    • Brian Martin

      Especially this week. That way there is more game film of Tapper so the coaching staff can better evaluate him during the bye week.

  • Eric Smith

    It’s been time to play Tapper.we need the best players on the field regardless of draft position.

    • Brian Martin

      I completely agree. Unfortunately I just saw that Tapper is on crutches and could miss an extended period of time. Could be a player the Cowboys put on IR and designate him to return in a few weeks. That would free up a spot for David Irving.

  • Ervinlang318

    Just think we passed on Watt for Taco. When the League goes Zig the Cowboys love going Zag. We always go against the popular vote.We never should have drafted Taco

    • Brian Martin

      The ceiling for Charlton is much higher than Watt. The Cowboys drafted Charlton for the long-term. Watt has been better so far, but there’s no way of telling who will be the better of the two when all is said and done. We’re just going have to be patient with Taco while he continues to develop.

  • Derick Ramirez

    Poorly written article. No editor to catch the multiple errors? And just like that, this is no longer an option with Tapper on IR

    • Brian Martin

      I appreciate you critiquing the article. Even with proofreading errors sometimes slip through the cracks unfortunately. Hopefully they are all corrected now to your satisfaction. And yes, it looks as if I jinxed Charles Tapper by complementing him. But, I still believe he is better than Taco Charlton at this point in their careers.

      • Derick Ramirez

        I promise I’m not a troll. I just have an expectation that a published article is properly edited (I teach English). And I agree. I wanted to see Tapper out there. Play time should be decided by performance.

        • Brian Martin

          No worries. These things happen sometimes. I use a voice activated program (Dragon NaturallySpeaking) to type because of my disability and it a lot of times it has a mind of its own. I try to correct my mistakes though. I don’t mind being called out LOL.

          Unfortunately, it looks as if my article jinxed Charles Tapper. He is now headed to IR with what looks to be a broken fifth metacarpal bone in his foot.

          • https://InsideTheStar.com/ Bryson Treece

            Metatarsal* I believe. Metacarpals are in the hand. Blame that one on Dragon NS, Brian haha

Star Blog

Is 3-3 Without Ezekiel Elliott A Win For Dallas?

Kevin Brady

Published

on

Cowboys 2017 Roster Projection: Preseason Week 2
Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

It’s funny how quickly perception can change in the NFL.

A little over two weeks ago, the sky was falling on the Dallas Cowboys. They had just been blown out three straight times, twice at home and twice against direct NFC playoff competitors. Cowboys Nation wanted firings – whether that meant head coach Jason Garrett, Scott Linehan, Rod Marinelli, or all of the above.

Dak Prescott couldn’t survive without Ezekiel Elliott, and all of the change made to the defense was beginning to be called a failure by the masses.

Fast forward to this week. The Cowboys have now been the deliverers of butt-kickings the last two weeks, and now sit at 7-6 with an outside chance at a playoff spot. And while the team looked like a complete mess without Elliott previously, a win Sunday would put them at 3-3 over the course of the Pro Bowl running back’s suspension.

And is that really all that bad?

Heading into the suspension, most fans probably would’ve taken 3-3 without Elliott and 8-6 overall. Most fans would’ve though that would put the Cowboys right in the thick of the things in the NFC playoff hunt. And most would’ve assumed we’d be happy with an 8-6 Cowboys team.

Unfortunately, 8-6 most likely won’t be good enough in this year’s playoff race. Especially considering the return of Aaron Rodgers and previous losses to both the Green Bay Packers and Atlanta Falcons. Plus, the entire NFC South has been fantastic this season (besides Tampa Bay) and two teams from the West look legit as well.

So maybe this just isn’t the Cowboys’ year. But, the success of other teams in the conference shouldn’t cloud our perception of what the Cowboys have done this season if they were to win Sunday night. A win over the Raiders this week would qualify the team’s handling of the Elliott suspension as a “success” of sorts (in terms of on the field, at least) in my opinion.

They would have kept themselves alive in a deep NFC playoff race, discovered a legitimate offensive weapon in Rod Smith, maintained a solid rushing attack over the majority of the six games, and allowed for some real growth from their young quarterback Dak Prescott.

I know the first three games of the suspension were awful, and a team with the talent of the Cowboys shouldn’t be losing that way three times in a row, or three times in a season at all. But, something should be said about how the team has weathered that storm, and kept themselves above water in this competitive conference.

But, of course, the result Sunday night could change all of this if the Cowboys come out and lay an egg in Oakland, effectively ending their season before Zeke even gets back. In that case we will more vividly remember the three horrific losses in which the team was out-coached and embarrassed. But, still those games should be remembered regardless of Sunday’s outcome.

So maybe success is a bit of a strong word.

This week’s game is not only a huge one in terms of the 2017 playoff race, but also may be an important one for determining what the 2018 Cowboys will look like.

ADVERTISEMENT

Continue Reading

Star Blog

Do We Know What The 2017 Dallas Cowboys Are Capable Of?

Mauricio Rodriguez

Published

on

Cowboys 2017 Roster Projection: Training Camp Begins

For the Dallas Cowboys, the playoffs have begun a bit earlier. After putting themselves in a tough position, they need to win out in order to have a shot at playing in January… and even then, they need a ton of outside help to make it.

Less than a year ago, we saw the Cowboys become the #1 seed in the conference with a 13-3 record under rookie QB Dak Prescott. So naturally, it’s fair to say that the fact that after 14 weeks the record of this football team is 7-6 is very disappointing.

Some have even questioned, are they even worthy of being a playoffs team? 

Despite suffering from some key injuries and well… suspensions, the Cowboys shouldn’t be left off the hook. Players and coaches should be blamed. But even still, it’s hard to believe that Dallas wouldn’t have win at least one more game with Tyron Smith, Sean Lee or Ezekiel Elliott available.

Should Cowboys Be Concerned About Ezekiel Elliott Long-Term?

I’m convinced that if Zeke hadn’t been suspended, the Cowboys would at least have one more win. If that were the case, we probably wouldn’t be suffering thinking about what combinations would get our favorite team in the postseason.

All of this makes me wonder… Do we know what this team is capable of? 

I think not. Let’s take a quick look at the games Dallas has lost this year.

  • @ DEN Broncos 
  • vs LA Rams (No Sean Lee, Cowboys’ defense allowed 35 points)
  • vs GB Packers (No Sean Lee, Cowboys’ defense allowed 28 points)
  • @ ATL Falcons (No Tyron Smith, no Ezekiel Elliott, Cowboys scored seven points)
  • vs PHI Eagles (No Tyron Smith, no Ezekiel Elliott, Cowboys scored nine points)
  • vs LA Chargers (No Ezekiel Elliott, Cowboys scored six points)

I believe in the “next man up” mentality. But not when you’re talking about going from Tyron Smith, who is arguably the best LT in the league to Chaz Green and Byron Bell. Sure, the coaching staff should’ve made a change earlier when Green was getting Dak killed, but Bell wasn’t much better.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not trying to make excuses for this football team at all. In fact, it’s the same thing when you take a look at wins. Through 14 weeks, the Cowboys have just been able to beat one NFL team with a winning record: The Kansas City Chiefs. The thing is, despite being 7-6, the Chiefs are 2-8 since week 6. I’m not sure I’d qualify that as a winning team.

We haven’t seen this team face a strong, winning opponent and actually beat them. The Cowboys have one more game to win without Zeke, and then they’ll be on to face the Seattle Seahawks. If Dallas gets to that game with an 8-6 record, the outcome of the Seattle game could define the Cowboys’ 2017 season.

With Ezekiel Elliott, Sean Lee and Tyron Smith all ready to go, it’d be the first time this year we see the Cowboys go against a quality opponent with all of their star players. Will this defining game come too late? Perhaps. It’s no secret that the Cowboys need a ton of outside help in order to get into the playoffs with 10-6 record.

Dallas Cowboys Wishlist At Denver Broncos 1

Dallas Cowboys TE Jason Witten #82, QB Dak Prescott #4. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

But at least, it’d be nice to see our team at least doing the job they can control and winning out. Even if it’d be painful to see them go 10-6 and still miss the playoffs… as fans, we probably want to see them doing their job.

For now though, it’s all about the Oakland Raiders. One more week without Ezekiel Elliott. After surviving a trap game against the Giants, the Cowboys must do the same again as they prepare to face a football team that has also been disappointing this season but still has dangerous play-makers, such as Derek Carr.

And then, we might find out just how good the 2017 Dallas Cowboys really are.

Tell me what you think about “Do We Know What The 2017 Dallas Cowboys Are Capable Of?” in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 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!

ADVERTISEMENT

Continue Reading

Star Blog

Should Cowboys Be Concerned About Ezekiel Elliott Long-Term?

Brian Martin

Published

on

Should Cowboys Be Concerned About Ezekiel Elliott's Future?

It’s funny how quickly some players are able to establish themselves as professional athletes and grow their fan base. That is exactly what Ezekiel Elliott has done in just a little over a years time since becoming a member of the Dallas Cowboys. Unfortunately, given his current situation, it’s that fan base that might be starting to turn on him a little and doubt his long-term future in the NFL.

Unless you have been living under a rock, you are fully aware of the six-game suspension the NFL slapped Ezekiel Elliott with based on nothing more than accusations of possible domestic violence. Right or wrong, guilty or innocent, it happened and there is no taking it back. But unfortunately, because of the suspension Elliott will now have to walk the straight and narrow if he wants to have any kind of career in the NFL.

I honestly don’t think Ezekiel Elliott is a bad guy, but the slightest slip up will more than likely put his career in jeopardy. It doesn’t matter how big or small the infraction, the NFL has already decided they are going to make an example of him.

RB Ezekiel ElliottFrom here on out, Elliott is going to have to live like he is under a magnifying glass. Any kind of slip up, big or small, will likely cause the league to suspend him an entire season. This unfortunately has been weighing on the minds of a lot of Cowboys Nation and has to be at least a little bit concerning for the Cowboys organization.

You see, the Dallas Cowboys have Elliott under contract for at least three more years after this season. He has already proven how important he is to the offense and how much production dips without him in the lineup. They absolutely want him on the field because he makes them better. But, any kind of slip up would pretty much erase one of those three years. Look no further than what has happened with Randy Gregory.

I’ve heard many fans voicing their concerns about Ezekiel Elliott’s long-term availability with the Cowboys. They are afraid Elliott’s immaturity will end up getting the best of him and Zeke unfortunately has done nothing to ease those concerns so far.

I for one am not all that concerned about Zeke’s future in the NFL. I think his six-game suspension has served as an eye-opening experience and that he will do better from here on out to put himself in better situations and surround himself with better/more trustworthy people.

Dak Prescott, Ezekiel ElliottYou can see anytime Zeke is on the field his passion for the game and how much he enjoys it. I don’t think he’s going to put something he cares so much about in jeopardy. But unfortunately, he already has a bull’s-eye on his back and can’t afford to take a misstep. That will without a doubt put his future career in jeopardy.

I personally can’t wait to see how #21 responds when he is able to suit up once again next week against the Seattle Seahawks. I think he is going to play with a chip on his shoulder and run angry. That is the best way he can stick it to the league for suspending him based on accusations and another reason why I’m not concerned about his future in the NFL.

I know if it was me, my mindset would be to turn myself into the best player possible and once again become one of the more popular athletes in the league. That is about the only way he can say “F U” to the league, and I think that’s exactly what he will do.

Are you concerned about Ezekiel Elliott long-term?

ADVERTISEMENT

Continue Reading

Reader Survey

Want to help make Inside The Star better?

We’re collecting feedback from our readers about the site. It only takes <2 minutes to complete, and can be done from any device.

> Take the survey now

Don’t worry, your information will not be shared with anyone but me (Bryson T.).

Advertisement

From Our Partners

Advertisement
Enjoy 40% commissions on officially licensed products as a FanPrint affiliate. You can even make your own, fully licensed Cowboys and player designs! Get started here

Trending