The Dallas Cowboys could add some desperately needed depth to their wide receiver room with this trade.
According to Brian Martin of Blogging the Boys, the Cowboys should pull off a trade for New Orleans Saints wide receiver/kick return Deonte Harris. Harris is a former Pro Bowler and an ex-All-Pro selection, having garnered the accolades during the 2019 season as a rookie. He finished the 2019 season as the leader in punt returns, combined returns and punt return yards.
“Harris will be playing under a one-year deal with the Saints in 2022 and currently finds himself buried on the depth chart,” says Martin. “Because of that, he could be acquired via trade and Dallas should jump at the opportunity. Harris could be a veteran who can be a WR, gadget player, and return specialist. That kind of triple-threat is exactly what they need.”
While the Cowboys could acquire Harris for a reasonable price, Martin stresses Dallas’ lack of receiver depth following Amari Cooper’s trade as a primary reason to acquire Harris.
Why Cowboys Could Consider Trade for Harris
“James Washington and Jalen Tolbert could prove to be capable No. 2 and No. 3 receivers early on for the Cowboys, but that’s a pretty big leap of faith considering they both are new additions this offseason,” explains Martin. “With that in mind, Dallas may want to look outside the organization for more WR help, and while there are some intriguing names still available on the open market, none of them bring the same kind of skill set as Deonte Harris would.”
As Martin notes, the Cowboys will technically enter the season with James Washington and rookie Jalen Tolbert as their No. 2 and No. 3 receivers due to Michael Gallup’s injury. Gallup — who is the No. 2 receiver behind CeeDee Lamb — is expected to miss the first two or three games of the season, according to Cowboys Vice President Stephen Jones.
“Cowboys VP Stephen Jones said receiver Michael Gallup could miss two or three games at the beginning of the season,” said Jones on March 29.
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How Harris Fits With Cowboys
While Harris won’t make people forget about Gallup — he figures as an ideal option in the slot rather than on the outside at 5-foot-6, 170 pounds — he could provide short-term relief for a team suddenly lacking in depth at receiver.
Harris posted 36 receptions for 570 yards and three touchdowns while remaining durable enough for 50 total returns for 889 yards (17.8 yards per average). Lamb projects as the Cowboys’ punt returner this season. Considering Dallas’ reliance on him as the top receiving option, it would probably be wise to replace him with a pure returner such as Harris.
Outside of the fact that Tolbert is a rookie, Washington is a very questionable go-to option considering his history as a former high draft pick with the Pittsburgh Steelers. The 26-year-old is a former second-round draft pick who won the Fred Biletnikoff Award for the nation’s best receiver in college football back in 2017.
Despite those accolades, Washington’s career-best totals in a single season are the following: 44 receptions, 735 receiving yards and five touchdowns. During the 2021 season with the Steelers, Washington posted just a 50.5 receiving grade, according to Pro Football Focus.
For perspective, that was the worst grade of any receiver with at least 40 targets last season.
If the Saints are willing to deal Harris for a low draft pick or a end-of-the-roster type of player, the Cowboys could pull off a much-needed trade for a versatile receiving weapon.