Dallas Cowboys 53-man Roster Projection (OTA edition): Who’s making it

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - DECEMBER 16: Ezekiel Elliot #21 of the Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - DECEMBER 16: Ezekiel Elliot #21 of the Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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ARLINGTON, TX – SEPTEMBER 16: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys comes out of the huddle with the offense in the second quarter of a football game against the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium on September 16, 2018 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

The Offense (50 spots remaining)

Offensive Line(9)

Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick, Zack Martin, La’el Collins, Connor Williams, Connor McGovern, Joe Looney, Cameron Fleming, Mitch Hyatt

The surprise here is the undrafted free agent Mitch Hyatt winning a spot over Xavier Su’a-Filo. XSF endeared himself to many fans with his physical nature and straight-line power but the truth is he only had one good game in 2018 and by the end of the season, rookie Connor Williams was out-performing him.

XSF may have a limited ceiling but he’s still a great player to have for depth. The Dallas Cowboys just happen to be loaded with depth and I believe will ultimately pick Hyatt over the veteran guard. As explained here: How Mitch Hyatt Makes the Cowboys

Hyatt projects as a great swing tackle to groom behind Fleming but will probably have to flex inside for depth to make the final roster. Dallas paid him a ridiculous amount to come here so you’d think they have a plan for the young tackle this season since the practice squad isn’t a realistic option.

Receiver (6)

Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, Randall Cobb, Cedrick Wilson, Tavon Austin, Noah Brown

The first three are absolute locks but after that things can go a number of directions. The Dallas Cowboys standard at WR is typically about six. So even though the Cowboys are as deep as they’ve ever been at WR this year, it’s unlikely they’ll stretch above that half-a-dozen threshold.

My pet cat, Cedrick Wilson, should be given plenty of opportunity to surpass others given his ability to play inside and out. The coaching staff gushed over him last year at this time and now that he’s healthier, stronger, and more polished he has a good chance of making the cut.

I have Brown and Wilson essentially bumping Hurns, and Austin is one injury away from losing his spot to Jon’Vea Johnson.

As I discussed last Sunday, Noah Brown is extremely valuable to this team. Looking at his reception totals, it may not seem like it, but Garrett values him much like he values the FB position. Brown is young (23), a great blocker, and a strong athletic body in traffic.  I’d much rather keep him than a fourth tight end since Brown is as good of a blocker as any TE4, plus offers significant upside as a receiver.

Tight End (3)

Jason Witten, Blake Jarwin, Dalton Schultz

Up until last week I was convinced there’d be a fourth tight end on this roster and that man would come from a different team at the last minute. But now, I’m leaning towards Dallas going long at receiver instead of tight end because I’d much rather keep Noah Brown than pick up someone else’s TE5 cast off.

Quarterback (2)

Dak Prescott, Mike White

Mike White didn’t do much to instill confidence in 2018, but I still hold out hope he’ll live up to his pre-draft scouting reports. Cooper Rush is another wildcard here since he was Romo-esque as a rookie and Brandon Weeden-esque as a second-year player. At the end of the day, I believe Dallas wants to go heavy elsewhere and Dak Prescott’s durability lets them do that.

Running Back (4)

Ezekiel Elliott, Jamize Olawale, Tony Pollard, Mike Weber

The first three guys are locks. Zeke is Zeke. Dallas loves Olawale and plan to give him an increased role in 2019.And Pollard was a high draft pick with a unique set of skills Dallas will use both as a RB as well as a slot receiver.

Mike Weber makes the cut because we don’t really see another viable option right now. But he’s far from a sure thing. Past late round RB draft picks haven’t done so well in their bids to claim a roster spot. Both Bo Scarbrough and Darius Jackson failed to make the cut in their rookie seasons, and if Weber doesn’t prove himself in camp, he won’t either.

That’s 27.