The Dallas Cowboys have had a quiet offseason, but there is still plenty of talented veteran free agents who remain unsigned. It is no secret that the Cowboys have a need at wide receiver after trading Amari Cooper to the Browns, and seven-time Pro Bowler Julio Jones is available after being released by the Titans.
The Athletic’s Jon Machota listed Jones as one of the top remaining free agents who is a potential fit for the Cowboys. Jones has a connection to Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn from their time together in Atlanta.
“The seven-time Pro Bowler is 33. He has played in only 19 games over the past two seasons,” Machota wrote on April 21, 2022. “If there is any gas left in the tank, perhaps Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn might suggest Jones is worth adding to the mix at the right price. Quinn was Atlanta’s head coach during Jones’ most productive NFL seasons, which included five consecutive years of at least 1,300 receiving yards.”
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Jones Is Coming Off the Worst Statistical Season of His NFL Career
The Cowboys still have $15.3 million in remaining cap space, but a portion of this money will go towards the team’s draft picks in the coming days. This still leaves the Cowboys with some wiggle room to sign an intriguing veteran like Jones.
The star wideout is coming off the worst statistical season of his 11-year NFL career. This could create an opportunity for the Cowboys to get a bit of a bargain on the playmaker, potentially on a one-year prove it deal.
Jones notched 31 receptions for 434 yards and one touchdown in 10 starts as the playmaker battled injuries throughout 2021. The Titans trade for Jones did not go as planned as Tennessee released the wideout less than one year after giving up a second-round pick for the receiver.
After six straight seasons with more than 1,000 receiving yards, Jones has been unable to reach this threshold the last two seasons. Jones has dealt with injuries in recent seasons playing in a combined 19 games over the last two years.
Jones on Cooper Trade: ‘It Allows Other Players to Step Up in Even a Bigger Role’
The Cowboys are likely to explore adding a wide receiver in the draft, potentially even as high as No. 24. Dallas appears optimistic that CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup can both embrace larger roles in the offense to make up for Cooper’s absence.
Adding a player like Jones would give the Cowboys a bit of insurance, but Dallas may prefer to give those snaps to a promising rookie receiver. Despite trading Cooper for salary cap reasons, Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones indicated that the team is hopeful there can be a bit of addition by subtraction at wide receiver.
“The biggest thing of all is it’s been a long time since we have won a championship and no one appreciates that more than myself, than Jerry [Jones], than the people in this organization,” Jones told Dallas’ 105.3 The Fan on April 19. “You’ve got to get over the hump.”
“At the same time, we didn’t last year with that same group of players and sometimes you let a player move on and it allows other players to step up in even a bigger role, whether that’s a CeeDee Lamb or a Michael Gallup. I know Amari was a great player for us, but this might allow certainly CeeDee and Michael to step up and play an even bigger role and who knows what their upside may be.”