Cowboys Named ‘Potential’ Trade Destination for NFC Rival’s Dynamic RB

Mike McCarthy

Getty The Cowboys could be an ideal landing spot for Lions RB D'Andre Swift.

The Dallas Cowboys could be looking at a dynamic option as their replacement for Ezekiel Elliott.

Through the first three rounds of the 2023 NFL Draft, the Cowboys surprisingly did not take a running back. Instead, Dallas went with a defensive tackle, tight end and linebacker with their first three picks. Considering the Cowboys did not take a big-name running back in the early rounds of the draft, they still have a hole at running back following Elliott’s release.

As suggested by CBS Sports’ Bryan DeArdo, the Cowboys could be a “potential” landing spot for Detroit Lions running back D’Andre Swift. The Lions are currently receiving trading calls for the dynamic running back following their own surprising draft selection of running back Jahmyr Gibbs with the No. 12 overall pick.

“You may have heard that the Cowboys released Ezekiel Elliott this offseason,” writes DeArdo. “The Cowboys still have Tony Pollard, but he is on a franchise tag and is not under contract beyond 2023. Dallas also still needs a replacement for Elliott, which is where Swift comes into play. He would be an ideal fit in Dallas’ offense while serving as the lightning to Pollard’s thunder.”

Why the Cowboys Would Acquire D’Andre Swift

It’s no secret that Dallas is still seeking a workhorse running back to complement Pro Bowler Tony Pollard. Pollard is coming off of a breakthrough campaign, rushing for over 1,000 yards (5.2 yards per carry), while clinching his first Pro Bowl berth. As efficient as Pollard is, he’s never proven to be a full-time back. In fact, Pollard had just 193 carries in 16 games and four starts last season in comparison to Elliott’s 231 carries through 15 games and 14 starts.

Swift would be the ultimate complement to Pollard considering he’s young, dynamic and already has experience working in a dual-committee backfield. Swift ran for 5.5 yards per carry last season on 99 carries for 542 yards. To top it off, he proved to be one of the NFL’s top receiving weapons out of the backfield for a third straight season, notching 48 receptions just a year after posting 62 receptions.

Despite appearing in just 13 games with eight starts, Swift ranked 12th among all running backs in receptions. He did so while playing just 42% of the offensive snaps. During the 2021 season, Swift ranked fourth among all running backs in receptions despite starting just four games.

In other words, he’s essentially as dynamic of a playmaker as Pollard is.

As mentioned before, he’s worked in a dual-back system since his rookie season in 2020. During his rookie season, he shared the backfield with Adrian Peterson. Over the past two seasons, he’s shared it with Jamaal Williams.

D’Andre Swift on Bargain Deal Entering 2023 Season

Swift’s cap hit would be a bargain deal for the Cowboys or any other team considering he’s still on his rookie deal. As he enters the final year of his rookie contract, he’s due just $2.7 million — the 26th-highest among all running backs. Spotrac projects Swift’s market value to be $6.4 million per year, which would make him the 11th-highest paid running back in the NFL.

Considering the contract is not an issue, the only potential holdup would be trade terms. Although Swift is just entering his prime, it’s hard to envision him fetching more than a third-round draft pick. When one factors in the devaluation of running backs, the Cowboys could very well acquire Swift for a fourth-round pick tacked on with a lower value pick.

Dallas’ current backup options at running back are free agent signee Ronald Jones and Malik Davis, who has just 38 carries to his name.

If Swift is indeed available via trade, it wouldn’t surprise anyone to see the Cowboys make a play for the dynamic Lions running back.


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