Don’t look now but second year receiver, Michael Gallup, is in the midst of a breakout with the Dallas Cowboys…
Michael Gallup has quietly been having quite the season for the Dallas Cowboys. The former third round draft pick hasn’t just built on his rookie season, but he’s about to blow it out of the water. the best news is his success is built to last and can only get better.
We first must appreciate what Gallup has done this season. At the halfway point he’s tallied 29 catches for 454 yards – just 53 yards short of his 16-game total last season. He’s already matched his TD total from last season and he’s increased his yards per target from 7.5 to 9.9 and his catch percentage from 48.5% to 63%.
Granted, much was expected of Gallup in his second year. With Amari Cooper demanding the bulk of the secondary’s attention virtually every down, Gallup was sure to see his share of “looks”. But it’s what he’s done with those looks that’s so noteworthy and when diving in deeper, there’s reason to believe he’s only scratched the surface of his potential.
Michael Gallup came to Dallas as an underrated player with a history of success. According to Pro Football Focus, in college Gallup finished second in yards per route, a stat they consider a major indicator of professional success.
Dallas Cowboys fans saw that translate right away his rookie season, with Gallup serving as the official deep threat and logging an impressive 15.4 yards per reception. This season he’s built on that, raising the already high figure to 15.7 yards per reception all while operating a much more diverse route tree.
It may seem odd a receiver with 4.51 speed is such a legit deep threat, but Michael Gallup has a special set of intangibles that make big plays down the sideline such common place.
First, it’s his flat out athleticism and ball skills. Perhaps you saw some of that on Monday Night Football…
But Gallup doesn’t just have a knack for winning 50/50 balls and a flare for the big play, He has a rare extra gear he uses to create separation deep down the sideline. When the ball goes in the air, Gallup pulls away. It happens too often to regard as just a fluke. It’s a legit skill.
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According to ESPN’s Next Gen Stats, on average Gallup just achieves 2.3 yards per separation. A modest number for sure. But that average is likely low simply because of the number of slant routes he runs, which are more about body positioning than separation.
It’s important to point out all of this is sustainable. Not only did all of this transfer from the college game to the pro game, but it’s improving. Even more importantly is the person responsible for getting him the ball – Dak Prescott.
Prescott has one of the best deep ball ratings in the NFL. Fans like to focus on the missed opportunities but the reality is every QB struggles to connect deep and Dak is one of the best in the NFL over the past 16 games.
The constant threat of Amari and the innate skill to get open deep by Gallup say this trend will continue and Gallup isn’t just going to improve on his totals from last year, but more than double them.
Watching the film you can see this is far from a polished process and there’s still a lot of room to grow. More consistent routes and repeated attempts will only improve the chemistry Dak and Gallup have built. Cowboys Nation, we’re witnessing a breakout.
- Published on 11/06/2019 at 13:24 PM
- Last updated at 11/06/2019 at 13:30 PM