The Dallas Cowboys lost their top two tight ends this offseason to retirement. Jason Witten decided to leave on his own and pursue a career in broadcasting. James Hanna had to retire because of injury. The only major thing the Cowboys have done in response, so far, is to add tight end Dalton Schultz, a fourth-round pick in the recent draft. Given the lack of experience on their roster, especially among tight ends who have caught actual passes in NFL games, there has been speculation they may look for a veteran to come in and compete.
“I like the group that we have and don’t see at this time [adding a veteran], but I reserve the right to change my mind,” Jones said. “At this time, I don’t see adding an additional veteran player to our group. I like the opportunity, the freshness of the group. I like the opportunity of the competition. We’re familiar. We’ve got new guys as far as our group is concerned in there. The makeup of that creates an atmosphere that I think could enhance how we play tight end.”
Geoff Swaim is the experienced guy, but in his three years with the team, he has caught nine passes. That’s a lot time spent blocking. He’s never been thought of as a pass-catching tight end, so that might not change much. At this point, though, he’s probably TE1.
Blake Jarwin is the guy they have a lot of hope for, but until he actually does it, we just won’t know if he’s a player or not. His draft profile from last year certainly gives one hope.
Unexciting statistical production belies his potential as a pass-catcher on the next level. He has the necessary athleticism, uncover, and toughness to work both the first and second levels of the defense. Jarwin needs work in the weight room and as a blocker in order to handle reps as an NFL tight end. He has eventual starter potential and should find a spot on a roster as a rotational tight end with the potential to play in-line and on the move.
Then there is Rico Gathers. What athletic ability! His preseason games last year made every Cowboys fan drool with anticipation. Then he was injured and out for the year. There is the issue of inexperience playing football and still needing to learn, and questions about how much he wants it, but if he finally puts it all together, watch out.
Finally there is Dalton Schultz, the rookie. We’ll have a film review available on him tomorrow, but as it looks now, he certainly has a chance to get into the rotation. He’s a quality blocker who looks like he has the tools to be a pass-catcher, too.
Jason Garrett spoke about the group.
“We’re excited about the group,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “You know, we feel good about those young guys. Obviously, Wit has been such a big part of what we’ve done here for a long time. As we all know, he played so much. He played every game [except one in his career]. He played virtually every play in all different situations. A guy like Geoff Swaim has gotten some opportunities to play. Blake Jarwin, who we’re excited about, really hasn’t had a chance to play in games yet. Rico was still learning the game. So each of those guys, they’re new and there’s a lot of learning for them over the course of this spring and through training camp to get them ready. Excited about the tight end we drafted. Looking forward to getting him in here and seeing what he has to offer our team. But this gives a lot of young guys an opportunity. In a lot of ways, that can help them grow that much more quickly. They’re not standing there watching, learning that way. They’re in there. They’re in the fire, and I think that’ll help them develop.”
So BTB, at the end of the year, which of these four tight ends will have made the biggest impact on the Cowboys fortunes in 2018?
Which tight end will have the biggest impact on the Cowboys 2018 season?
This poll is closed