The Dallas Cowboys can make major moves in free agency, and it’s clear some help should be added to the team’s offensive firepower in 2023.
The wide receiver group has been scrutinized heavily since the end of the season, as the lack of high-level help around star wide receiver CeeDee Lamb became apparent in final weeks of the year.
But the team could address their wide receiver group and the possible departure of free agent tight end Dalton Schultz with one signing: Jacksonville Jaguars star Evan Engram.
Engram found new life with the Jaguars in 2023, putting together the best season of his career with a hybrid role in the Jacksonville offense. Engram was always billed as a tight end, but head coach Doug Pederson and his staff were creative in their usage of the former New York Giant and had him line up all over the field.
Engram wouldn’t be the cheapest possible option, primarily because the Cowboys could realistically stick with the 2022 rookies, Jake Ferguson and Peyton Hendershot. But if they want to try and kill two birds with one stone, Engram could help both the receivers and tight ends in 2023.
Engram Excels with Jaguars
When Jacksonville handed Engram a $9 million, one-year deal back in the 2022 offseason, there were some understandable doubts. Engram had just had his worst season in the NFL, and the PFR numbers showed that.
In his final season with New York, Engram totaled 408 receiving yards and three touchdowns. In his singular season with the Jaguars, the tight end set personal bests for receptions and receiving yards with 73 catches and 766 yards, adding four touchdowns to boot.
It was an impressive turnaround for a player whose stock had never been lower, and the connection between Engram and quarterback Trevor Lawrence was apparent. While Lawrence is showing potential, getting Cowboys QB Dak Prescott that kind of weapon should translate to similar or even better results.
Cowboys Could Snatch Engram from Jacksonville
After the Jaguars lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Divisional Round, Engram was asked about his thoughts on Jacksonville. The 28-year-old made it fairly apparent that he is planning on staying with the Jaguars.
I’ve had the best year of my life, the most fun I’ve had in a while,” Engram said, according to Action Sports Jax. “It sucks that our season is over. We’ve got to wait a while to get back; training camp will be here sooner than later… It wasn’t a good five years, my first five years in the league. Those were rough. All I did was work, at that point. But coming here, I love working here.”
However, that doesn’t mean that Jacksonville couldn’t “steal” Engram in free agency. That’s especially true if they’re willing to give him a pay raise, say the $11 million that they spent using the franchise tag on Schultz.
The Cowboys’ cap situation will be one to watch, but the expectation is that they will have the ability to make space and add new blood to the squad. If Schultz is on the way out, Engram showed in 2022 that he’s certainly worth that kind of money.
The former Ole Miss star has a huge skillset and is now a veteran who knows his way around the league, and more specifically, the NFC East. Engram would be a freakish addition in terms of the variety of abilities he has, and that should only mean good things for players like Lamb and Ferguson.