General consensus around here is that the Dallas Cowboys of 2020 have a roster that could contend for a championship this season. Ultimately the goal in professional football is to win the Super Bowl, ideally win a lot of them, but there are other accomplishments to be had for players in the National Football League. There are individual accolades like being named All-Pro, receiving a Pro Bowl nod, and maybe even one day winding up in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
This week would have actually been the one that ended with Jimmy Johnson, Cliff Harris, and the rest of this year’s inductees being enshrined in football’s most immortal fraternity in Canton, OH, but obviously those festivities will not be taking place. Looking further down the road, way down it, who else could one day find themselves being fit for a gold jacket?
What current Dallas Cowboys could one day wind up in Canton?
Looking at the current Dallas Cowboys roster there are certainly a handful of players that we can envision receiving the highest individual honor that the game offers. ESPN’s Bill Barnwell broke such possibilities down into tiers and has three Cowboys with “likely” odds to get in: Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, and Ezekiel Elliott.
We’ll get to those three in a second, but it’s important to note that it is obviously possible for anyone on the roster to someday get in. Players like Dak Prescott, Amari Cooper, and maybe even CeeDee Lamb have a lot of football left in their careers and could put together HOF-worthy campaigns before it’s all said and done. Assessing where things stand entering 2020 though, it is difficult to disagree with Barnwell’s assessment.
Among these three players the strongest likelihood of entering the HOF probably lies with Zack Martin. You could take any of his six seasons and hand them to most guards throughout the game’s history and that arbitrary season would be among the best, if not the very best, one that said hypothetical guard ever played. Martin is that good. Consider that he has never not been an All-Pro or Pro Bowler (granted the Pro Bowl doesn’t exactly hold significant prestige anymore these days).
Hoisting Martin up is done with absolutely no disrespect to Tyron Smith obviously, the facts are that Smith’s dominance is just of a slightly more minimal variety than the man three spots down from him on the offensive line. They are both very likely going to wind up in the HOF, but the unfortunately reality is that their running mate for so long in Travis Frederick probably won’t get in.
It will be fascinating to see how the running backs of today are reflected upon when it comes time for HOF discussion. You are likely aware of the “running backs don’t matter” thought process among some NFL minds and while there is certainly a case that paying that position top dollar isn’t the wisest way to handle your football finances, the success of players like Ezekiel Elliott cannot be ignored. In actuality, it is possible that teams not paying running backs and seeing big-name ones wind up elsewhere (see Todd Gurley as a recent example) could boost someone like Elliott’s campaign all the more because they were such an outlier in that respect.
Which current Cowboys player has the best chance at the Pro Football Hall of Fame?
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