Dallas Cowboys Free Agency: 2021 a good year for bargain hunting

(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

If you’ve been a Dallas Cowboys fan for a long time, this is your annual “step off the ledge” moment. Every year we try to convince ourselves the Cowboys front office will pursue a premium free agent, and every year they leave us standing in the cold.

Dallas, led by coupon-clipper extraordinaire, Stephen Jones, employs a tried and true strategy in free agency: wait for the market to cool, target bargain players at positions of need, spread the eggs out into multiple baskets.

The moves diversify risk as well as free up opportunity in the draft. With major needs addressed (at least on paper), the Dallas Cowboys are able to draft the best player available early. It’s a good idea in theory. But in reality it doesn’t always work out (see also: last year).

If there was ever a year to be patient with the Dallas Cowboys in free agency, this is it.

As expected, we saw a flurry of free agent signings right off the bat. And as usual, we saw big money thrown at some fairly notable names. Fan favorites like John Johnson and Delvin Tomlinson exited the market on Day 1, causing panic in Cowboys Nation.

Be Patient with the Dallas Cowboys

As if we have any other choice, I’m here to make the case to be patient. The market is far from dried up and cap space is dwindling on many NFL teams. When the opportunistic shoppers like the Dallas Cowboys decide to throw their hat in the ring, there should be plenty of players to choose from.

Will they be the stars we just saw get signed? Of course not, that’s why they’re still waiting for jobs. But it’s what the Cowboys do so we might as well make peace with it.

Last season was an unmitigated disaster from a free agency perspective. They all essentially fell on their faces and it was a complete waste of resources.

When you bargain hunt you typically have more misses than hits. You’re playing the numbers game. And unlike last year, the numbers game may work in Dallas’ favor this year.

It speaks to the supply and demand previously mentioned. With the reduced salary cap, there are less buyers overall this year. The reduced cap also means there are more than your average supply. This bodes well for the teams resisting the urge to buy early.

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Look, the Dallas Cowboys were never going to throw anything close to eight figures at the 1-tech position. It’s a part-time player on Dan Quinn’s defense and not something the front office invests in. Would it had been nice to finally address the 1-tech? Sure, and I think they will eventually, but it was never going to be Delvin Tomlinson.

Hopefully the Dallas Cowboys don’t wait too long to dive in. They have a ton of needs and it would be nice to get a sure thing or two earlier in free agency so we could breathe a sign a relief somewhere. .

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Alas, this is what the Dallas Cowboys do. They wait and hunt the slower buffalo in the herd. Like it or not it’s what appears to be happening. But this year it may actually work.

  • Published on 03/16/2021 at 12:01 PM
  • Last updated at 03/16/2021 at 09:03 AM