clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Cowboys free agents 2023: How others rank Dallas’ top free agents

The Cowboys have a lot of free agents, but only a few are ranked among the tops in the league.

Dallas Cowboys v Washington Commanders Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

As followers of the Dallas Cowboys, we tend to have very detailed opinions of the players, and by extension those players who will be free agents from the team in 2023. But it’s always interesting to see what others think. They aren’t clouded by personal likes or dislikes or other non-football stuff that can sometimes color our opinions. Of course, they are disadvantaged by the fact that they don’t watch the players as closely as we tend to do around here. Everything is a tradeoff.

Anyway, ESPN recently released their list of the 50 top free agents of the 2023 offseason. A couple of the Cowboys made the list, let’s check in to see where they are ranked.

12. Dalton Schultz, TE, Dallas Cowboys

Age entering 2023 season: 27

Schultz’s postseason production — 12 receptions, 122 yards and three touchdowns in two games — should erase any questions about a knee injury that slowed him earlier in the season. He’s a vertical seam stretcher who can be schemed on play-action or boot to use his ability to run after the catch. He has some speed when he gets free. Plus, Schultz — another guy who played on the franchise tag — won’t turn 27 until July.

Dalton Schultz didn’t have the season most were hoping for when the Cowboys decided to franchise tag him last offseason. Injuries played a role in that, and he never seemed to form a connection with Cooper Rush during his time under center. Things improved with Dak Prescott’s return, and he started to look more like himself down the stretch and into the playoffs.

But the Cowboys are probably going to pass on entering the Schultz sweepstakes. They need to free up some money and Schultz will probably see some very substantial contract offers from other places. The Cowboys will likely turn to Jake Ferguson, backed up by Peyton Hendershot and possibly a veteran in free agency that doesn’t cost a lot, or a draft pick.

19. Tony Pollard, RB, Dallas Cowboys

Age entering 2023 season: 26

Pollard slips down these rankings after he fractured his left fibula in the postseason loss to San Francisco. He showed during the season, however, that he has the traits of a lead back with a dual-threat upside. While splitting touches with Ezekiel Elliott, Pollard rushed for a career-high 1,007 yards while averaging 9.5 yards per catch on 39 receptions, earning a trip to the Pro Bowl. When healthy, Pollard has big-play ability and formation flexibility in the pass game.

If you ask most Cowboys fans, Tony Pollard is the free agent from the team that they would desperately like to keep. Even more than the higher-ranked Schultz. Pollard had his breakout year and he still has plenty of tread left on the tires after being a backup for most of his time in Dallas.

The Cowboys need to decide what to do about Ezekiel Elliott and his contract, and that will play heavily in what they do with Pollard. They could franchise tag Pollard to keep him, but they would prefer to work out a multi-year deal that would lower the cap hit in 2023.

No other Cowboys free agent made the list. But one potential target did make the list. Earlier this week we’ve found out that the Cowboys are still very much interested in Odell Beckham, Jr. Stephen and Jerry Jones said that talks will resume with OBJ. He shows up on the list.

26. Odell Beckham Jr., WR

Age entering 2023 season: 30

Beckham missed the entire season after he tore the ACL in his left knee during the Rams’ Super Bowl LVI victory last February. If the knee checks out in physicals, however, we know he can still make an impact as a No. 2 receiver. In 12 games with the Rams in 2021 — including the playoffs — Beckham caught 48 passes for 593 yards and seven touchdowns. Based on what I saw on that tape, Beckham has lost some of the explosion that made him one of the NFL’s most dynamic players a few years ago. Still, there’s detail to his route running; he can create immediate separation at the line of scrimmage.

Would OBJ satisfy your requirements for another receiving option in the offense?

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Blogging The Boys Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your Dallas Cowboys news from Blogging The Boys