Cowboys’ Veteran TE in Danger of Being Cut Before 2023 Season: Analyst

Sean McKeon

Getty Dallas Cowboys tight end Sean McKeon celebrates a touchdown.

The Dallas Cowboys have built up their roster in preparation for the 2023 season, but one veteran is already being called out as a cut candidate.

Dallas has made an effort to keep the core of the 2022 squad together this offseason by restructuring contracts like QB Dak Prescott’s and re-signing veteran names like linebacker Leighton Vander Esch.

However, Bleacher Report’s Alex Ballentine believes that one of the team’s veterans, tight end Sean McKeon, is a prime cut candidate. Considering the Cowboys’ young trio of tight ends, McKeon is looking like the “odd man out.”

“Sean McKeon has been a fringe contributor for three years. He’s primarily played special teams and logged 44 percent of those snaps in 2022. That might not be enough to keep him on the roster,” Ballentine wrote. “The Cowboys’ selection of Luke Schoonmaker in the second round this year created a logjam at the position. Dalton Schultz is gone, but Jake Ferguson and Peyton Hendershot remain on the roster.”

Schoonmaker’s NFL readiness is still unknown, but Dallas drafted the former Michigan man in the second round of the 2023 NFL draft for a reason. On the other hand, McKeon has staked his spot on the roster due to his special teams ability and it could be hard to let him walk.

McKeon Finds Home in Dallas

Some Cowboys fans may not realize that Schoonmaker and McKeon have actually been teammates before. Back in Schoonmaker’s freshman year with Michigan in 2019, McKeon was a senior contributor for the Wolverines.

However, Schoonmaker is entering the NFL as a highly-touted prospect, whereas McKeon was an undrafted free agent. The 25-year-old impressed the Cowboys enough to initially make the pre-cut roster, and then the 53-man roster in 2020 and has basically been there ever since.

But as Ballentine mentions, McKeon is primarily a special teams player. According to Pro Football Reference, the TE has brought down six receptions over three seasons for 38 yards and a touchdown.

It’s hard seeing how McKeon would step into a bigger role offensively, especially with Schoonmaker now in the mix. But he has held onto a roster spot for three consecutive seasons, an accomplishment that can’t be disregarded.

Cowboys Linked to Former Packers TE

While McKeon may be facing the chopping block, someone who could potentially step in would be former Green Bay Packers tight end Marcedes Lewis. Lewis is a 17-year veteran in the NFL, but is currently a free agent.

Bleacher Report‘s Kristopher Knox addressed the idea of Lewis joining the Cowboys, making the case for the experienced TE in a teaching role for the young group.

“With Schoonmaker and 2022 fourth-round pick Jake Ferguson projected to be Dallas’ top two tight ends, it would make sense to add a little experience to the position. No tight end on the market has more experience than 17-year veteran Marcedes Lewis,” Knox wrote.

Lewis would likely contribute on offense in a similar way to McKeon, which is to say rarely. However, that level of experience is invaluable and players like Schoonmaker and Ferguson could definitely benefit from it.

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