Cowboys Predicted to Cut Promising 23-Year Old Playmaker

Jerry Jones

Getty Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys looks on before a game.

The race is on among the Dallas Cowboys running backs with potentially just one available spots behind Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard. The Athletic’s Jon Machota projects that Rico Dowdle will snag the final running back spot meaning promising rookie Malik Davis is likely to be cut despite impressing during the preseason. The former Florida running back signed with the Cowboys in April as an undrafted free agent.

“The Cowboys are unlikely to keep four running backs,” Machota wrote on August 21, 2022. “If they do, Davis will make the cut. But it’s more likely that they’ll keep three and that final spot will come down to Rico Dowdle or Davis. The coaches would probably favor Dowdle because of his experience, but Davis is making things difficult. He continues to be elusive and physical. He averaged 4.6 yards per carry Saturday after averaging 6.4 yards per carry last week.”

Davis has flashed during the Cowboys’ first two preseason matchups putting pressure on the Cowboys decision makers. The former Gators running back had eight carries for 51 yards during his NFL debut against the Broncos. Davis followed this performance up by scoring his first touchdown while adding 37 yards on eight rushes versus the Chargers.

ALL the latest Dallas Cowboys news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Cowboys newsletter here!

Join Heavy on Cowboys!

Dowdle Is the Favorite to Win the RB3 Spot

Davis notched 284 carries for 1,470 yards and eight touchdowns while adding 70 receptions for 726 yards along with two TDs during his five years at Florida. Early in training camp, Cowboys running back coach Skip Peete noted that Dowdle had the lead for the team’s RB3 role but left the door open for another back to seize control.

“They’re all challenging for that role [of RB3],” Peete told in early August. “But if we had to play a game tomorrow? Rico has really shown that he’s matured a lot and has a complete understanding of what we’re doing. If you would’ve asked me two years ago, I would’ve probably said it’s wide open.

“But, right now, I think he’s kind of distanced himself from those other guys a little bit because of his ability of being here and understanding what we’re doing – he has two months under his belt versus six months. Those two other guys are pretty talented as well. The way they’ve picked up the system has been very, very impressive, and I wouldn’t put anything past those guys challenging anybody.”

How Will the Cowboys Utilize Elliott & Pollard?

One of the major questions heading into the season is how the Cowboys will utilize Elliott and Pollard. There has been some buzz that Pollard will receive more snaps as a receiver allowing the Cowboys to play both running backs together. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones shot down the notion that Pollard can unseat Elliott as the team’s lead back.

“We gotta have Tony Pollard out there,” Jones explained during a July 30 interview with NFL Network. “No, seriously, Zeke’s gotta be our feature, and he is our feature. We can feature him in a lot of different ways. We all recognize what he does in the passing game because of his protection ability. Don’t ever underestimate that especially with Zeke.

“Zeke takes some tolls when he’s out there as a back blocking. So it’s critical that we make Zeke — because he’s capable of being that — really the focus of what we’re doing. Now then, Pollard, there’s plenty of room for Pollard. There’s plenty of room for Pollard when Zeke’s in there. Pollard needs to get the ball.”

Read More