Now that free agency has slowed to a trickle, let’s review what happened.
The Dallas Cowboys had 10 unrestricted free agents before we hit the signing period for free agency in 2018 (well 10, plus Orlando Scandrick once they released him). They also had a couple of restricted free agents and an exclusive rights free agent according the free agency tacker over at the Mothership.
As we stand her in April, concentrating on the draft, it’s worth noting that of those 10 UFAs, the Cowboys only re-signed three - DeMarcus Lawrence, L.P. LaDouceur and Joe Looney. Of those three, only one plays a major role (Lawrence). LaDouceur is as good as they come but plays a very limited role and Looney is insurance who will be fighting for a roster spot. The Cowboys were very content to let most of their free agents walk, although they would have loved to have kept Anthony Hitchens at the right price.
They also kept RFA David Irving with a second-round tender and they brought back ERFA Brian Price at defensive tackle.
Five of the UFAs found homes elsewhere, Anthony Hitchens (Chiefs), Jonathan Cooper (49ers), Brice Butler (Cardinals), Bene Benwikere (Cardinals) and Kyle Wilber (Raiders). RFA Keith Smith also moved on to the Raiders while Orlando Scandrick found new digs in Washington.
That leaves two unrestricted free agents who played for the Cowboys last year who are still unsigned.
RB Alfred Morris
OT Byron Bell
It’s curious that Morris hasn’t found work. He did a nice job when asked and the Cowboys didn’t overuse him the last few years, so at 29-years-old he still should have some mileage left on the tires. He does have some drawbacks - he’s not a great passing threat out of the backfield and he’s never been a special teams guy. Teams may be waiting until after the draft and the compensatory draft pick deadline before trying to reach a deal.
Byron Bell never panned out for Dallas despite the fact he had a ton of starting experience before signing with the team last year. He eventually supplanted Chaz Green as the backup tackle for Tyron Smith, but he wasn’t exactly a huge upgrade.
It seems unlikely that either of these players would wind up back in Dallas.
As a reminder, the Cowboys signed seven outside free agents, but one of them will almost certainly not make the roster. Punter/Kicker Brett Maher is just an offseason leg to help Dan Bailey and Chris Jones.
The six that the Cowboys did sign for a spot on the roster:
WR Allen Hurns
WR Deonte Thompson
OT Cam Fleming
G Marcus Martin
LB Joe Thomas
DE Kony Ealy