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Tyler Biadasz Won’t be “The Next Travis Frederick” Right Away, If Ever

Tyler Biadasz was a 4th-Round draft pick for the Dallas Cowboys this year. However, many are already calling him, “the next Travis Frederick.” This optimistic outlook could prove true, but it won’t happen right away and may ultimately be unfair to the rookie.

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the Cowboys’ 2020 draft class in general and the massive expectations they will face as rookies. But today I want to focus on Biadasz and the unique challenge he faces.

Tyler joins the Cowboys immediately following Frederick’s unexpected and untimely retirement. After Travis’ successful return to football in 2019 from his neurological disorder, we figured he’d be here for at least the next few seasons if not the end of his contract.

Still stinging from that loss, fans perked up when Dallas drafted another center from the Wisconsin Badgers. But while he was a standout player in college, Biadasz enters the NFL without the same scouting appeal as his predecessor.

Remember, Travis Frederick was a 1st-Round pick and was generally considered the top center in the 2020 draft class. Tyler was one of the better centers in the 2020 class but was seen as more of a mid-round pick, which is exactly where the Cowboys took him.

Of course, Frederick was called a reach when Dallas originally took him in 2013. He proved the doubters wrong by becoming one of the elite centers in the NFL, but he also had a stronger scouting report going into his draft than Biadasz had.

So comparatively, before ever taking a practice snap for the Cowboys, Frederick was already viewed as a superior player than Biadasz. Keep that in mind.

Cowboys Headlines - Cowboys Loss Begins With Success Of Giants' Defensive Line 1
Travis Frederick (72) standing next to former coach Bill Callahan (Michael Ainsworth/The Dallas Morning News)

Another point in Frederick’s favor; he had the privilege of learning from offensive line guru Bill Callahan during his two seasons in Dallas. Callahan was a huge factor in how Travis, Tyron Smith, and Zack Martin all quickly became top talents at their positions.

Dallas got a brand new o-line coach in 2020 when Joe Philbin became part of Mike McCarthy’s staff. Philbin has an extensive background with offensive line work and won a Super Bowl with McCarthy in Green Bay. However, he hasn’t ever had the kind of prolific success with offensive lines that Callahan had with the Cowboys.

Will Philbin give Tyler Biadasz the same developmental boost as a coach that Bill Callahan gave to Travis Frederick?

Somewhat related is that Frederick walked onto the Cowboys roster as a new starter. He got to work with the first-team offense right away and received all of the attention needed to help a rookie make that quick transition into a starting role.

Biadasz isn’t coming in with the same immediate level of responsibility. Joe Looney will likely get the veteran nod at starter and there’s also 2018 3rd-Round pick Connor McGovern in the mix. Biadasz likely isn’t starting in 2020 and may not for at least the next few seasons.

That could stymie Tyler’s growth overall in his career. Part of what made Frederick the player he came was invaluable playing time in real games. There’s no guarantee that Biadasz will ever get that in Dallas.

Obviously I’m not rooting for Tyler Biadasz to fail. Him actually becoming an equivalent player to Travis Frederick as a 4th-Round selection would be an incredible success.

This is just a reality check; Biadasz isn’t coming in with the same projection for NFL success or opportunities to play and develop. He has a longer way to go to reach Frederick’s peak and more hurdles to get over.

Calling Tyler Biadasz “the next Travis Frederick” is a hope, not a logical projection. It’s certainly possible but shouldn’t be the expectation we hang around his neck for the next four years. Otherwise, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment.

What do you think?

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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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  1. Thanks for writing a Cowboy article that includes reality.
    Biadasz is above all, a rookie, in a year where camp is going to be limited at best.
    Rookies will have a hard time playing this season and coaches will rely more on veterans . Simplifying systems, minimizing use of rookies , and maximizing practice efficiency will determine success this season.
    Rookies just won’t have much learning time this year.
    The NFL is a coach’s league but this year is all about the coaches.
    Pederson in Phili was infinitely better than Garrett and now McCarthy has to show if he can compete with Pederson.
    2020 ,if it happens, will be the year of the veteran coach and the veteran player.

  2. I disagree with your take on “Badass” for two reasons;
    1. Tyler won the award for being the top center in the nation the year prior to playing last year through injury. His 2018 film shows someone fully capable of having a phenomenal impact on the pro level.
    2. Travis was seen as a reach for the Cowboys when they took him, so in all honesty no one knows how the new center will pan out. Tyler could turn out to exceed the “ naysayers “ expectations, just like Travis did.

  3. True, and yet … if there’s an offensive line in the NFL with which a rookie could start at center, this is one of them. I don’ think he can beat out Looney, but if Looney should get hurt, then whoever they put in there has some awful good players lining up next to him. I am not one to heap Frederick-like expectations on Biadasz, but I do believe the team can perform with him in there and he is less likely to negatively impact the 2020 fortunes of this club than the defense as a whole.

  4. I never expected Biadasz to start this yr hard position to play at the NFL level. He needs to get stronger and acclimate himself to the pro game. However, he is the only pure center on the roster and since its doubtful he will ever play any other position on the line, Cowboys would be a disappointed if he wasn’t starting by yr two. Looney is only signed thru this yr so Biadasz definitely needs to be ready by next yr

  5. It’s hard for a rookie to be the next ALL PRO player, but Biadasz has the tools and ability to succeed and become at least a solid Olineman to maybe eventually become a Pro Bowl player. This year will be tough on rookies because everything is compressed due to the virus. Disagreed with the mid round rating in the draft assessment by the author. In 2017, Tyler was a FRESHMAN ALL AMERICAN. In 2018, All Big Ten. Huge in 2019, UNANIMOUS ALL AMERICAN, RIMINGTONN AWARD WINNER (BEST CENTER), OUTLAND TROPHY FINALIST. Agree with Gary b, he may need some seasoning before he takes the reigns, but its just a matter of time. Saw one play that wowed me on Tyler. Against Ohio State, he took out THREE players, a DT, a LB and a DB on one play. I know it’s one play but, how many times do you see that? Tyler allowed just ONE SACK in 390 total plays in 2019! Safe to say, I think his future is bright, and Prescott’s job got easier.

  6. Frederick may have been ranked as the best C in his draft class, I honestly don’t remember. What I do recall is many if not most draft pundits, Kiper and McShay had him graded as a 3rd round talent. That is the same prediction they were giving Biadasz. Add to that he was considered a 1st round talent before his injury riddled 2019 season. I’m not saying Tyler is going to be all pro, but out of college he graded out better than Frederick.

  7. Your wrong about where biadasz was projected to be drafted!! He was considered to be a 1st round talent…. The only reason he fell as far as he did is because of his injury!! If he wasn’t injured he would have been taken in the 1st round!! And you can’t say he won’t be as good as Travis Fredrick, cause you haven’t seen him play in the NFL yet!! You never know, he could turn out to be better than Fredrick!! With the other players he’ll have lined up next to him it’s very possible that he’ll succeed in the NFL!! But we won’t know that until he gets on the field!! But until then you can’t write these crazy stories until you see him play in the NFL!!

  8. I agree that tempering expectations is a logical way to approach this season. There a number of outstanding rookies on the roster this year but who knows if any of them will be starting in 2020. I would love to see a whole group of them earn starting roles but if they don’t, I won’t be devastated by it. The fact is, the Cowboys have good players that will be hard to beat out for starting jobs. As for Tyler Biadasz specifically, he won the Rimmington Award as the nation’s top center. He also has had hip and shoulder surgery and is still recovering from those surgeries. Once he is 100% healed and gains back his strength he will again be a top center. I’m not worried about him, I think he will become a Pro-Bowler early in his career.

  9. Frederick only did 21 reps on the bench at the combine. He ran a 5.58 in the 40 (yeah I know 40 time isn’t that important for a center, but still it’s done), second slowest among centers.
    Yet the turned into a multiple Pro Bowler. And Biadasz is considered a top run blocker, something which fits well with the Cowboys strong emphasis on the run game (at least to this point)
    Point is you never know, he could be another David Arkin, or could be another Travis Frederick.
    And he doesn’t have to be “the next Travis Frederick”, he’ll have Martin, Smith and Collins to play with, if he’s ONLY “pretty good”, if that’s the weakest spot on the line we’re still in good shape.
    Don’t put too much on the boy’s shoulders too early…

  10. Gotta love Looney but he is on another one year contract for a reason. Biadasz must be immediately treated as the expected starter in order to get the reps and develop. He has the credentials to win it and keep the job. Looney backup center, McGovern backup guard.

  11. If Looney were to falter or get injured , I could see Biadasz stepping in later in the season, though hopefully he get some experience before throwing him in the fire. That would also push Looney into back up guard/center, helping our depth where I think his value is to the team.

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