Still basking in the glory of their widely hailed 2020 draft haul, the Dallas Cowboys aren’t done adding to a much-improved roster.
That, straight from the mouth of Dallas vice president Stephen Jones, who admitted after the draft he’s “had communications” with unspecified free agents, signaling the team will add veteran depth in the days or weeks ahead.
“I don’t think you ever rule it out,” Jones said, per The Athletic. “We’ve certainly got our eye on a few guys that we’ll look at. But the good news is that going into the draft, we felt good about our football team. Coming out of the draft, we feel great about our football team. If we can improve it, we’ll feel even better about our team, and that’s the way we’ll look at it as we move forward.
“We certainly are open-minded and will continue to be open-minded on what it will take to improve this football team. … We’ll keep our eyes open. I actually have had communications already with some guys that could give us some veteran experience that might help these young guys.”
Following a sluggish start to the NFL’s signing period — which saw the Cowboys lose multiple starters, including Byron Jones, Jeff Heath, Jason Witten, Randall Cobb, and Maliek Collins — the club brought aboard a slew of defensive reinforcements: linemen Gerald McCoy and Dontari Poe, pass-rusher Aldon Smith, cornerback Maurice Canady, and safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix.
This patched most of the holes, but voids remained heading into the draft. Those same voids no longer remain. The Cowboys pieced together arguably the league’s best rookie class, headlined by first-round wide receiver CeeDee Lamb and second-round cornerback Trevon Diggs.
New starting center? Check.
Edge help? Check.
Secondary insurance? Check.
Backup quarterback? Check.
“Seriously, this is really one of the best [classes in franchise history],” Jerry Jones said, via the team’s website. “You just have to look at what’s up there, and you can figure it out.”
Following an A-plus-graded splash into the first-year player pool, the Cowboys do not have many, if any, starting positions left unsolved. But that doesn’t mean they can’t use a backup or two …
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What Areas the Cowboys Could Target
Now that the NFL compensation deadline has passed, an increase in free-agent activity is expected. Dallas won’t be sniffing around the likes of Cam Newton or Jadeveon Clowney, but the Joneses’ are always turning over rocks in the hunt for gems.
One position the Cowboys did not address through the draft is tight end, where Blake Jarwin is penciled in as the starter — Witten’s full-time replacement. Behind Jarwin on the depth chart is 2018 fourth-rounder Dalton Schultz, free-agent signee Blake Bell, and 2020 undrafted free agents Charlie Taumoepaeu and Sean McKeon.
Among the available veteran TEs: Jordan Reed, Delanie Walker, Vernon Davis, Ed Dickson, Charles Clay, and Lance Kendricks. Since Jarwin is fairly young, it’d behoove Dallas to provide him a veteran mentor not unlike the man whose job he took.
The Cowboys also may continue to bolster a few defensive areas, such as off-ball linebacker. They, too, might bring in competition for incumbent punter Chris Jones, after the Cowboys hired a new special teams coordinator (John Fassel) and technically signed two kickers (Greg Zuerlein, Kai Forbath).
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL