Aug 16, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Baltimore Ravens quarterback Keith Wenning (10) is tackled by Dallas Cowboys defensive tackleZach Minter
((79) during the game at AT&T Stadium. Baltimore beat Dallas 37-30. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
So after two preseason games there are some players who have stood out and should stay on the roster, and some who look like they should be let go. We all know the starters who will be on the team, that is without question. But there have been some backups who look like they could not only make the roster, but could play prominent roles for the Cowboys this season. Let’s have a look at those who should make the roster, and those who are in jeopardy of being on the street in a few weeks.
For those who are going to make the roster, or at least those who are in strong consideration, there seems to be a few surprises and a few that everyone could have called at the start of training camp. After these preseason games these are the guys who right now are looking like they will be here for the long haul, remember I am not including the obvious starters:
Zach Minter – For a guy who has only been with the team a few days, Minter looks like he already is in the defensive line rotation. He got continuous pressure on the QB and was always around the ball it seemed. While this is a small sample size he looks to be a pass rush specialist and as of right now looks like he belongs on the roster.
Ryan Williams – Look I like Joseph Randle, but Williams looks like he is a better RB. While it is possible the Cowboys go four deep at the RB position since none of the FBs have impressed so far, I think they go heavy on defense and keep three on the active roster with maybe one on the practice squad. Right now I think Williams is the guy they keep. He is punishing in the run game and has some moves to get around guys.
Jamar Newsome – I am not sure how many WRs the Cowboys will keep, but right now he is one of the top five WRs. While it is possible he doesn’t stick around if the Cowboys go lighter on offense to keep more people for the defense, right now Newsome has made a little name for himself.
Dustin Vaughn – If the Cowboys keep three QBs then right now I think they keep Vaughn. At the very least they will try to sneak him onto the practice squad. He has shown a little flash to his game and seems to be pretty accurate. While he still has a way to go to become an NFL starter he has the tools to work with.
Ahmad Dixon – I know he missed this last preseason game, but his physicality at the safety position is something that has been missing from this team. I like him to stick around even if he is a role type player and on special teams right now. He seems to not be afraid to stick his nose into a play and is always around the ball.
Now for those who have not really progressed or shown enough to keep around there are a few guys who stand out in this. Some of the undrafted rookies aren’t on this list as they really had to show a lot to be kept in the first place.
Jeff Heath – While he made a play in the first preseason game, there has not been enough progression in his game to warrant keeping him. He takes really bad angles to the ball and ball carriers and misses a ton of tackles. I think Dixon has passed him and if Heath has any hopes of sticking around he needs to step up and also play really well on special teams.
Tyler Clutts – While I am not sure the Cowboys keep him or Copeland at this point, Clutts just hasn’t really shown up. He has missed a few blocks and seems to disappear in the running game. The reason Copeland isn’t on here is we haven’t really seen him yet. But as of right now it is looking like the Cowboys won’t keep a FB.
Caleb Hanie – I like Hanie as a backup, but right now Dustin Vaughn looks to have more upside. I don’t think Hanie has really done anything to hurt himself I just don’t think he has done anything to help either. While Hanie could stick around, I think right now he is on the outside looking in.
Joseph Randle – Like Hanie I just don’t think he has helped himself, but hasn’t really hurt himself either. Randle has some upside, but right now Williams is the better runner. Where Randle could stick on special teams, but even that I am not so sure right now. He needs to have a better last two games if he wants to make the roster over Williams.
Matt Johnson – I know the Cowboys love him, but he is too often injured. I think they will look at his track record and let him go. While he does have some potential it is a shame we have never seen it. It might be time to let him go and go in a different direction. I think if he has any hope of making the roster he needs to show up for the last two games and play lights out. Right now I just do not see that happening.
So those are the guys I see making the roster and missing the roster. What do you all think? Did I miss someone glaring? Did I have someone that you aren’t in agreement with? Let me know below.