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Which Starting Jobs do the Dallas Cowboys Have up for Grabs?

Determining which starting jobs the Dallas Cowboys have up for grabs.

How many jobs do you think the Dallas Cowboys have up for grabs prior to making any offseason moves? Five… Ten… More? In order to get to the bottom of this question you’d have to go position by position to pencil in the players currently under contract. Luckily for you, I’ve already done just that.

Believe it or not, but the Dallas Cowboys don’t have too many starting jobs up for grabs. Yes, they could stand to upgrade a few positions, but for the most part they do have the players to start at most positions. Don’t believe me? Well, take a look for yourself…

OFFENSE

Quarterback:

The Dallas Cowboys seem bound and determined to bring back Dak Prescott for better or worse. Until that’s made official either via a long-term extension or another franchise tag though it means the starting gig is there for the taking.

Running Back:

Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard give the Dallas Cowboys a pretty good one-two punch in the backfield. I don’t foresee any changes here even though there’s a lot of speculation Zeke could be traded sometime this offseason.

Wide Receiver:

With Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup playing on the outside and CeeDee Lamb in the slot, there are no questions as to who will be the Dallas Cowboys starting wide receivers in 2021. You can ink them in as starters without any hesitation.

Tight End:

With Blake Jarwin returning from injury and Dalton Schultz’s emergence in 2020, the Dallas Cowboys have two capable starting tight ends for the 2021 season. The only question here is how these two will coexist/split playing time?

Offensive Line:

The Dallas Cowboys should have their starting five in Tyron Smith, Connor Williams, Tyler Biadasz, Zack Martin, and La’el Collins. There shouldn’t be any starting jobs up for grabs here unless either Tyron Smith or La’el Collins aren’t able to recover from their injuries for whatever reason.

DEFENSE

Defensive Tackle:

Either Trysten Hill or Neville Gallimore will likely take over as the starter as the 3-technique, but who starts as the 1-tech is a little less clear. Antwaun Woods has dibs on the job right now, however, he will likely be challenged for the starting gig by either a free agent or rookie addition.

Defensive End:

DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory should give the Dallas Cowboys a pair of really good defensive ends. There are concerns about counting on Gregory as a starter, but if he can keep his nose clean so to speak he could be a really dangerous weapon opposite D-Law.

Linebacker:

Switching back to a 4-3 defensive scheme the Dallas Cowboys need three starting linebackers, right now they have two in Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch. I could be wrong, but I think the WILL LB job is up for grabs and I’m not positive SAM and MLB aren’t either.

Cornerback:

Trevon Diggs will start as one of the Dallas Cowboys outside cornerbacks, but the starting job opposite him is currently vacant. Although not really considered a starter, Anthony Brown will once again take over as the nickel/slot CB.

Safety:

Donovan Wilson deserves a shot to start at strong safety, although that has yet to be seen. The free safety job however is completely up for grabs. Depending on what the Cowboys think of Wilson they could have one, possibly two jobs open.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Kicker:

Greg Zuerlein currently holds the starting gig as a Dallas Cowboys kicker. Unless he somehow becomes a salary cap casualty, it’s unlikely that changes heading into 2021.

Punter:

Hunter Niswander emerged in 2020 for the Dallas Cowboys, making Chris Jones expendable and more than likely a salary-cap casualty.

Long Snapper:

L.P. Ladouceur is currently a free agent, meaning the Dallas Cowboys don’t have a starting long snapper under contract for the first time in years. This job is up for grabs, but it’s probably Ladouceur’s if he wants it.

What do you think?

Brian Martin

Written by Brian Martin

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.

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  1. I thought McGovern played well in limited action. Since Williams is usually regarded as our weak link on the OL might that guard position be up for grabs?

    I would be disappointed if Woods is our starting 1-tech. Since we really really need an upgrade at that position, I would keep him as a backup.

    I think the LB position is more problematic than many think, especially if we go with the 4-3. Smith is no good and LVE can’t stay healthy.

    With the FS position being so important in Quinn’s D philosophy I expect that position along with CB/DT/LB will be heavily emphasized in the draft and to a lesser degree in free agency.

  2. This article says that the team will return almost intact after two failed seasons.
    The definition of insanity is to do the same thing and expect different outcomes.

  3. Top priority in upcoming draft is Cornerback!! With Comp. Picks a move to a higher pick in draft should be tried!! Than draft a Cornerback!! Than a replacement for Sean Lee!!! Trade 5th thru 7th pick for a high 2nd !! Than pick a Defensive Font Four !! Free Agency to rebuild Offensive line!!

  4. T’en (10) starting positions are up for grabs, the others are locked-in/inked in 1st string starters barring injury.

    Offense battles: LG, C, TE.
    There is only one 1st string TE, not two. These battles are mostly between two guys on the roster unless there is a surprise high draft pick.

    Defense battles are more wide open: 1T, 3T, RDE, LB, LB, CB2, FS.
    Gregory may still be a DPR and not a locked in 1st string starter. Either J Smith or LVE will start but they are also competing against each other.

    Current young guys on the roster, free agents, and draftees will compete mainly for these ten spots, especially the seven on defense.

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