Everyone will have their usual suspects to keep an eye on during the game against the Los Angeles Rams, but what about the not-so-usual? As we monitor the stock prices of some of the Cowboys under-the-radar guys, here are five guys that could see a rise in value after the first preseason game has completed.
DE Mike McAdoo
College: North Carolina
Years in league: 2nd, Age: 26
Height: 6-7 Weight 245
Why the buzz: Despite being 26 years old, McAdoo hasn’t played a single snap in the NFL. Whether it be due to injury or time in the CFL, he’s yet to get a real chance to play with the big boys. He gets off the ball quickly and is having a nice camp so far. The Cowboys are still having open auditions for edge rushers, so if McAdoo can make plays, he could be a sneaky pick to hold down a roster spot – at least until DeMarcus Lawrence returns from suspension.
OL Jake Brendel
College: UCLA, undrafted
Years in league: rookie, Age: 23
Height: 6-4 Weight 303
Why the buzz: With Mackenzy Bernadeau leaving in free agency, the Cowboys need a backup center in case something should happen to Travis Frederick. Right now, free agent acquisition Joe Looney holds down that spot, but the team has some competition for him in UDFA, Jake Brendel. He possess many of those RKG traits as he’s a smart player and exhibits great leadership.
The Cowboys offensive line group usually takes a nice dive after the starting unit is done, so it would be a welcoming feeling to see some depth guys make plays.
TE Austin Traylor
College: Wisconsin, undrafted
Years in league: rookie, Age: 22
Height: 6-3 Weight 247
Why the buzz: The Cowboys will be preserving the health of their top three tight ends. James Hanna is injured, Jason Witten is a precious metal, and even though Gavin Escobar is healthy, the team will want to proceed cautiously as he recovers from his Achilles injury. That means the bottom three guys will get some chances. Geoff Swaim will be the go-to guy and we should see some Rico Gathers as well. Rico is still new to the position, so don’t be surprised if another rookie tight end steps up and makes plays.
Traylor is more fundamentally sound than Gathers. He’s a good blocker and is more of a complete tight end at this stage in his career than his fellow rookie. While Traylor has almost no shot to make the team, a good showing could land him on the practice squad.
CB Dax Swanson
College: Sam Houston State, undrafted
Years in league: 2nd, Age: 25
Height: 5-11 Weight 191
Why the buzz: Swanson has traveled around a lot in just three years in the league as the Cowboys are the seventh team to sign him. He had 14 interceptions at Sam Houston State, and just like Jerry Jones – he likes to pick Johnny Manziel (he intercepted Manziel during Swanson’s last college game against Texas A & M).
Anthony Brown and Deji Olatoye are the Cowboys fourth and fifth corners, but they don’t have many good options past that. Swanson could make things interesting for that final CB roster spot if he can make plays over the next month.
DT Zach Wood
College: Southern Methodist, undrafted
Years in league: rookie, Age: 23
Height: 6-3 Weight 262
Why the buzz: The Cowboys are banged up at defensive tackle so there will be plenty of opportunities for the reserves. While he doesn’t possess a lot of traits to make him a strong interior lineman in the NFL, he’s one of those high effort guys and those types of players can stick out in the preseason. He’s having a nice camp so far.
Who are some deep sleepers that you could see generating some buzz after the game?