ESPN’s recent projections for Dallas Cowboys rookie WR CeeDee Lamb are surprisingly modest.
It seems the national media either works to aggressively praise the Dallas Cowboys to drive up ratings or works to aggressively slander the Cowboys to drive up ratings. Such is life as America’s Team, I suppose.
ESPN’s recent WR projections may be following that very formula when offering up their expectations for the Dallas Cowboys latest first round pick, CeeDee Lamb. Lamb, widely considered the best all-around WR in the receiver-rich 2020 NFL Draft, fell into the Dallas Cowboys’ laps at pick 17.
In a scenario no one imagined, Dallas was able to secure one of the more ready-made receivers in the draft, fortify a position of strength, and seamlessly replace the now-departed Randall Cobb in one fell swoop.
Cobb, who tallied 55 receptions, 828 yards, and 3 TDs as the Cowboys WR3, had an impressive season by any measure. Playing almost exclusively out of the slot, Cobb became one of Dak Prescott’s favorite weapons down the stretch. It’s no stretch to think the game-breaking Lamb can produce a season just as impressive, isn’t it?
Well, ESPN doesn’t seem to be betting on it.
Working against Lamb is his rookie status. Receivers often take time to develop and to expect a rookie to fill the shoes of a nine year veteran is optimistic, to say the least. What’s working to his advantage is his ability to move anywhere at receiver to exploit match-ups. Unlike Cobb, Lamb isn’t resigned to just playing slot (Yes, Cobb can bounce outside, but he’s not nearly as effective). This versatility opens up opportunities for the rookie.
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ESPN may think there aren’t enough balls to go around since WR1 Amari Cooper will be the primary passing target and WR1a Michael Gallup won’t be far behind. But I challenge anyone to take a look around the league and note who the CB3 is on each squad. You absolutely gotta love Lamb’s odds in those matchups.
Maybe ESPN isn’t just poking the bear that is Cowboys Nation. Maybe they legitimately don’t see Lamb filling the shoes of Randall Cobb in year one. Regardless of their intentions, I think most of us will take the “over” on 677 yards.
Dallas was already one of the top producing passing offenses in the league last season. They retained their offensive coordinator and added a head coach who’s notoriously pass-heavy. Factor in their suspect defense and you have a situation where the Dallas offense gets tangled in shootouts week after week. All of this bodes well for their offensive stats.
With Mike McCarthy running the show, the Dallas Cowboys are expected to grow as a pass-heavy team. CeeDee Lamb may not exceed Randal Cobbs numbers this season as he acclimates to the pro game, but I think we can all expect better numbers than what ESPN is predicting
- Published on 07/01/2020 at 11:01 AM
- Last updated at 07/01/2020 at 10:23 AM