While no one’s job in the NFL is safe, some Dallas Cowboys players have greater job security than others. These two players could lose their job at the end of the season due to the uncertainty and inexperience surrounding Cowboys Training Camp.
Cowboys First-Stringers In Danger Of Losing Starting Jobs In 2022
2. Ezekiel Elliott
It was hard to believe that Elliott could be anything other than the Cowboys’ star running back. Injuries and the rise in Tony Pollard have raised questions about Elliott ‘s ability to fulfill his task.
Elliott started last year with a strong start, averaged over 100 yards per game and scored a touchdown in five of the first five weeks. His production plummeted just as it seemed that the Cowboys’ running game was returning to its former self. After week five, Elliott averaged less 50 rushing yards per games for the remainder of the season. This further lowered his stature in the Cowboys’ offense. After the season was over, it was revealed that Elliott had been injured by PCL during Dallas’ matchup against Panthers week four. Although Elliott’s inability to produce might be explained by the injury, it will not make those who doubt Elliott’s viability as Dallas’ number one running back less skeptical.
Elliott’s overall numbers are in his favor. An injury to the PCL resulted in a 1,000-yard running season and 11 touchdowns in 2021. This is more than any other running back in the NFL. It is possible for Elliott to put together another great season if he is healthy. Elliott’s future as Dallas’ running back is not at risk from his health or abilities, but rather the development of Pollard, one of the Cowboys most dynamic playmakers.
Pollard only played 35% of Dallas’ offensive plays last season, but still managed over 1,000 all-purpose yards. He is a fourth-year running back and his exceptional receiving skills, coupled with his speed when he runs a block, make him a threat to replace Elliott. Pollard is a key part of Dallas’ offense in 2022. He also seems to be part of Dallas’ future, at least according to executive Vice President Stephen Jones. Jones stated on Aug. 3, in an interview with 96.7 The Ticket, that Pollard is a Cowboys priority beyond this season.
Jones stated that there are certain things that we need to look at as we move forward. “In terms that running back position, the cap, and how it works, in terms Zeke and Tony, and how we work together those two.” We’ll keep an eye on how it evolves throughout the year. The goal is for Tony Pollard to be back next year.
1. Dante Fowler Jr.
Dante Fowler Jr. is not a Cowboys veteran like Elliott. Dallas acquired Fowler this offseason, after missing out on several other high-profile edge rushers. Dallas didn’t hesitate to spend their second round pick on Ole Miss’ pass rusher Sam Williams this year. Dallas’s efforts to strengthen their pass-rushing unit since signing Fowler may suggest that the front office doesn’t believe Fowler is the right choice for the job.
Williams could be the most likely candidate to replace Fowler at Dallas’ right-end defensive line. This Oxnard rookie is just one of many players making waves this summer that has attracted Demarcus Lawrence’s attention. WFAA’s Mark Lane reported Lawrence’s first impressions on Williams.
Lawrence stated that Sam already has a lot of good tools and doesn’t seem to understand them. Lawrence added, “Sam already knows how to use these tools well. His speed and power are impressive. And his double-hand swipe is quite good.” Lawrence agreed. He’ll continue to improve if he focuses on the things he excels at.
Fowler, who has more NFL experience than any other Dallas edge rusher except Lawrence, makes him a better starter than younger players like Williams, Tarell basham, and Chauncey golston. Fowler, a former top three overall pick in the draft, has a lot of potential. Fowler can play to his ceiling and could be the Cowboys best option. However, Dallas’ depth at the position may lead to a more committee-based approach at the right defensive end.