Cam Newton as Dak Prescott’s backup? Here’s why the Cowboys need to steer clear - Calvin Watkins, Dallas Morning News
The former MVP is on the open market.
When it comes to whether the former NFL MVP should play in Dallas, please stop. Is Newton a better quarterback than Cooper Rush, the Cowboys’ current No. 2? Yeah, I believe he is. Does he fit with Dallas? No, he doesn’t. Newton has a strong arm, comes with plenty of confidence and can be signed to a cheap veteran minimum salary of $1.05 million, but he is not the type of quarterback the Cowboys want to pair with Dak Prescott.
Newton is a good guy, but his lack of leadership this offseason and the Cowboys’ desire for younger quarterbacks behind Prescott is more important. Yes, the Cowboys had 10-year veteran Andy Dalton backing up Prescott last year. When Prescott suffered a season-ending ankle injury, the Cowboys had the best candidate to move in. Dalton suffered a concussion, tested positive for the coronavirus and finished with a 4-5 record overall. He was using Dallas to rehab himself after nine uneventful years as Cincinnati’s starter. Dalton now is the starter in Chicago until the Bears realize rookie Justin Fields should be QB1. Dalton, however, is entering the mode of Nick Foles, the other backup in Chicago whose career as a long-term starter is over. Newton is in the same situation now.
Dallas should pass, or will pass, on Newton.
A look at the current 53-man roster that won’t stand for very long.
It would be a cruel joke to call this a final roster. If anything, this is all preliminary – a holding pattern while the Cowboys sort through the business aspect of the NFL. Keep that in mind while you read through the roster, which is complete with notes on where things stand with each position.
Here is a first look at the Cowboys' current 53-man roster, as well as how it might change in the coming days: Quarterback (2): Dak Prescott, Cooper Rush The Cowboys chose Rush over the other guys, holding onto the fifth-year veteran while releasing Garrett Gilbert and Ben DiNucci on Tuesday morning. The question now is whether the front office can find an upgrade elsewhere. It's possible the eventual backup isn't currently on this team, but Rush seems to be the favorite for the role. Don't be surprised to see Gilbert or DiNucci wind up on the practice squad, either.
Running Back (2): Ezekiel Elliott, Tony Pollard The injury that ended Rico Dowdle's season made this an easy decision. JaQuan Hardy, Nick Ralston and Brenden Knox will be practice squad considerations, but there was no need to keep them on the active roster. It's also likely the Cowboys will be scouring the waiver wire for a new No. 3 running back among another team's cuts.
What is your biggest takeaway from the preseason?
Hopefully it was a warmup for the backup offensive line. As 2020 saw the line in constant rotation, it was messy at times. That is why we can chalk up the offensive line’s performance in the preseason to figuring out what a healthy line means. With that being said, it was not a good showing for the Cowboys on the line who are likely to make the final roster. Ty Nsekhe, Terence Steele, Brandon Knight, and La’el Collins all finished in the top half of quarterback pressures allowed in the preseason. While Brandon Knight will not start, he still allowed the most pressure among all linemen over the last four weeks.
Contrast that with the fact that Connor Williams, Connor McGovern, and Zach Martin all played statistically very well in the preseason. This section could have easily been titled “key offensive linemen impress.” But last season proved that depth at the offensive line is important, and there is still room to grow for a few of the backups.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones talks ‘no limitations’ for Dak Prescott, LB depth chart and more - Staff, Dallas Morning News
The Cowboys’ owner spoke Tuesday about the team.
Who sits on top of the LB depth chart? Jones: “I’d say your starters there -- and that has different ways to view it -- but your starters are certainly [Keanu] Neal, [Micah] Parsons, [Leighton] Vander Esch, [Jaylon] Smith. Those are the guys that have given us our best look in anticipating what we’re going to be doing defensively.”
How do you feel about DT? Is that the first place you could look to add someone after roster cut downs? Jones: “No, it wouldn’t be. Frankly, not defensive about it -- to use the term on defense -- but we really like the way our young guys have stepped up. We’ve got a lot of help on the way. We’ve got guys that will be available to us as we get on into the season. So, frankly I think those interior guys on the defensive front are a strength for us.”
Dallas Cowboys: 1 bold prediction for each positional group - Steven Mullenax, FanSided's The Landry Hat
Getting bold a week before the start of the regular season.
Running Back Prediction: Ezekiel Elliott rushes for over 1,000 yards, but will not lead the NFL There’s been much ado about running back Ezekiel Elliott’s commitment to getting into terrific physical condition this offseason. And coming off his worst year as a professional, Zeke certainly wants to make a statement in 2021. And we believe he will. Expect Elliott to once again rush beyond the 1,000-yard milestone for the fourth time in his six-year career. But don’t expect him to have a repeat of 2016 or 2018 when he led the NFL in rushing yards.
While Zeke will be a big part of the offense this upcoming season, the team’s passing attack is far too talented not to be utilized in a potential record-breaking way. That fact alone will limit the 26-year old’s rushing attempts. Throw in a quality backup in Tony Pollard who himself deserves an increase in opportunities entering his third season, and Elliott’s chances of leading the league in rushing yards are nil.
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