clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Cowboys potential trade chips as depth chart sorts out in Oxnard

There could be some surprising names that emerge as potential starters for the Cowboys, leaving them with trade assets to add depth elsewhere.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

It won’t be long until the Cowboys are in Oxnard for training camp, where the roster battles for spots on the final 53 will heat up. Training camp is the time of the year where down-the-roster players make highlight plays, and fans attach to them in hopes that all 90 can somehow make the cut. The Cowboys are going to have to move on from some talented players though along with the rest of the league, and may be able to entertain trading others to get draft assets back or strengthen other positions of need.

Mark Lane and I combed through the roster to come up with some potential trade chips for the Cowboys on the Hidden Yardage podcast, with everything from rotational players and potential starters on both sides of the ball being considered. You can listen to the show every week on the Blogging The Boys podcast network as well as all of our other shows. Make sure to subscribe so you do not miss any. Apple devices can subscribe here and Spotify users can subscribe here.

G Matt Farniok

A new favorite for the Cowboys left guard job seems to emerge every week, but nothing can be learned about how Dallas wants to field their offensive line until the pads come on at training camp. When they do, Matt Farniok has a chance to secure this starting job. A depth player since being drafted in the seventh round of 2021, Farniok’s position flex to also play center is valued by the Cowboys who only have Tyler Biadasz as a proven player here - though the same could be said about any other team in need of a center.

Farniok, or any other left guard prospect, will have a hard time beating out last year’s top pick Tyler Smith for the guard spot if the Cowboys go with Tyron Smith and Terence Steele at tackle. If either Matt Waletzko or Josh Ball emerge as an option at tackle to provide depth behind Smith and Steele, and Alec Lindstrom proves he is a capable backup at center, Farniok’s usefulness to the team could lessen. At that point, he might be a good trade candidate to strengthen the roster elsewhere, or to grab a future draft pick.

TE Sean McKeon

The Cowboys have options to replace the production of Dalton Schultz, and having multiple TEs on the field at the same time could be seen more in Mike McCarthy’s offense than it was under Kellen Moore.

With three receivers in Brandin Cooks, CeeDee Lamb, and Michael Gallup that all take up the bulk of snaps at skill positions, there could be an excess at tight end with six on the current roster - counting Seth Green and Princeton Fant.

McKeon is mostly the blocking specialist of this group, an aspect of both Jake Ferguson’s and Peyton Hendershot’s game the Cowboys are hoping to develop as they see an increase in playing time. Sealing the edge for Tony Pollard is an important part of Dallas’ new offense, but doing so with TEs that also pose a receiving threat to lighten box counts is more valuable. Pollard isn’t the same type of physical runner as Ezekiel Elliott, and this speed lessens the need for extra blockers on the field.

Around the league, blocking TEs have value though, and if McKeon becomes the odd man out once rookie Luke Schoonmaker has a chance to prove himself, the Cowboys could try to swap him for another depth player from another team, or for a seventh-round pick.

QBs Cooper Rush/Will Grier

No stranger to the value of a reliable backup quarterback the past two seasons, the Cowboys are in a good place having both Cooper Rush and Will Grier on the roster. As camp injuries take place or depth is needed elsewhere on their own roster build, either Rush or Grier could become trade bait.

Rush earned a road primetime win in 2021 that earned him the job last season, where he was needed for five games, winning four of them until Dak Prescott returned in week seven. This likely makes Grier the player Dallas is more willing to move on from, and though he has less experience overall, playing in multiple offensive schemes is valuable as a backup.

DL Chauncey Golston

The depth Dan Quinn has to work with on the Cowboys’ defensive front is one of the overall strengths of this roster, but adding to it with draft picks Mazi Smith and Villiami Fehoko means the days of some players will be numbered. Chauncey Golston has made the most of limited opportunities, but entering year three the time may be now for the Cowboys to trade him when another team can value a rising player on his rookie deal.

Golston has made some of his best plays on the interior, where he faces a logjam with not only Smith, but Osa Odighizuwa, Jonathan Hankins, Quinton Bohanna, and Neville Gallimore. The competition doesn’t get any less fierce at defensive end, where Micah Parsons and DeMarcus Lawrence rarely come off the field, followed by Dorance Armstrong, Sam Williams and Dante Fowler.

Golston may be in the scheme that fits him the most under the coaching of a DL specialist like Quinn, but the Cowboys also value what Quinn has meant to their draft room, turning late-round picks into starters. The long-term projection to do so with a pick gained from trading Golston, and still have enough depth to start the season up front, is in line with how the Cowboys have balanced managing both current and future roster needs.

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