In the first installment of this Season Preview, we talked about the key figures of the Cowboys offense, as well as the potential of this Garrett-Callahan offense to be the best in the league.
Now, I’d like to talk about the less known players who I believe will also play an important role in this offense:
This kid got everybody excited with just a couple of moves in the preseason. The quickness and elusiveness he displayed prompted comparisons with Darren Sproles, which might be a bit far-fetched, but not without some logic. Once healthy, Dunbar will be that change-of-pace running back that Sproles was during his best years at San Diego playing behind LaDainian Tomlinson. Dunbar’s skill set brings a whole new dimension to this offense and gives Tony Romo another toy to play with. Giving DeMarco Murray some needed rest on third downs can’t be overstated either, given Murray’s injury history.
Once Travis Frederick proved his value and readiness for pro-football during the preseason, the selection of Gavin Escobar in the 2nd round of last April’s draft, may be the most unpopular one of a rookie class that so far seems pretty solid. Say what you want about the need to draft a tight end so high in this year’s draft, but Escobar is not going anywhere so Garret and Callahan better find a role for him. You have to admit that the kid has good size and good hands. While he still needs to develop into a good blocker, I’m pretty sure that he won’t become a Martellus Bennett 2.0. Just imagine the possibilities for Romo and mismatches for the defenses once Escobar and Witten start lining up together.
Of the three players selected for this analysis, Williams is the one that showed less in the preseason due to injury, which makes it harder to predict his role in this offense. Besides, the receiver position is one of the most difficult in terms of transitioning from college to the NFL. Nevertheless, Williams wasn’t brought here to be a #1 or #2 receiver this season, the Cowboys offense has so many weapons that he won’t even need to be Romo’s third option; meaning that he will face lots of man-to-man coverage which is kind of the idea. The Austin, Texas native, has a blazing speed that allows him to stretch the field, a situation that will be frequently exploited by Romo once he recognizes a mismatch in coverage.
The Cowboys 2013 offense is loaded with talent at every skill position, and the addition of Dunbar, Escobar and Williams will make it even more multidimensional. As we said in Part I of this preview, the biggest question mark resides in the offensive line; but with the recent signing of Brian Waters, what seemed to be the weakest link of the whole team, now looks like a strength with two first round selections and a 2011 Pro-Bowler.
If injuries respect this offense, and that’s a big ‘if’, Tony Romo and Dez Bryant will have record-breaking seasons and the Cowboys will be back in the playoffs for the first time since 2009.
Follow Luis on twitter @dominguez_luisf