Dallas Cowboys: Are Cedrick Wilson and Blake Jarwin worth the money?

ARLINGTON, TEXAS - AUGUST 29: Cedrick Wilson #16 of the Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TEXAS - AUGUST 29: Cedrick Wilson #16 of the Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

With so many proven, high priced veterans on the team, the Dallas Cowboys are in a constant state of penny pinching. The effort led by thrift-shopper extraordinaire, Stephen Jones, typically targets the rosters’ middle class citizens.

This austerity, of sorts, has led to the departure of many serviceable veterans over the years. And in a season in which the salary cap actually dropped, more middle class cuts are expected between now and September.

We discussed three of them a couple weeks ago in 3 Dallas Cowboys who could be surprise summer cuts. Be sure to check it out if you haven’t already. Today we’re going to shift to a couple names we briefly touched upon before and who remain in the news as possible cuts this summer: Cedrick Wilsons and Blake Jarwin.

Do the Dallas Cowboys think Blake Jarwin and/or Cedrick Wilson are worth their salaries this season?

The Dallas Cowboys are under the salary cap. They don’t need to make roster cuts. But even though the need isn’t immediately present, it doesn’t mean everyone is safe from Stephen Jones’ axe this summer. Money is money and the younger Jones is none too eager to spend off his inheritance if he doesn’t like the return on investment. Every summer we see it happen and this summer will certainly be no different.

Cedrick Wilson, WR

2021 cap figure: $2.183M

According to Over the Cap, Ced is on the books for $2,183,000 this season. While that figure doesn’t jump off the page as especially indigestible, it’s undeniably a lot of coin to dedicate a reserve WR. Heck, a deeper dive reveals Wilson isn’t even the clear WR4 on this offense. He and Noah Brown both took 228 snaps on offense last season and Brown has the edge in total snaps since he more than doubled Cedrick’s special teams snaps.

Wilson’s value is in his ability replace – not to produce big numbers on a healthy roster.

So really we’re talking about a WR5 on a team top-heavy in pass catching talent. Suddenly we see why some consider Wilson’s Cowboys career to be in jeopardy. Especially since none of that money is guaranteed and Dallas can get out cleanly from his contract if they so desire.

Why Cedrick Wilson is worth it

Everyone knows numbers can sometimes be deceiving and I believe that to be the case here with Wilson. First we have to understand the role Cedrick Wilson plays on this team. He’s basically the top back-up to the X, the Z, and the slot.

Wilson is one of the smartest and most versatile young receivers the Cowboys have drafted in years. Even as a rookie, Jason Garrett publicly spoke of Cedrick’s learnedness and his ability to jump in at any spot, knowing exactly what to do.

So while the stats show Cedrick only produced 17 catches for 189 yards last year, his value is in his ability replace – not produce on a healthy roster. Like a good veteran back-up QB, you hope you don’t have to use him much, but if you do, you’re grateful you have him.

Blake Jarwin, TE

2020 cap number: $4,544,118

Blake Jarwin’s best season as a pro was in 2019 when he caught 31 balls for 365 yards.  After Witten left, Jarwin was supposed to improve on that season last year. That’s why Dallas signed him to that  $22 million extension last offseason. But after tearing his ACL in week 1, those dreams were dashed.

Pro Football Focus recently ran through all the top tight ends in the league based on numbers, grades and film and what did they determine? That Blake Jarwin is the 31st best TE entering this season. Not what you want to hear about you TE1 entering the season, is it?

Why Blake Jarwin is worth it

The Dallas Cowboys made Jarwin the 19th highest paid TE in the league (per Over the Cap) based on how he projected in the future – not how he performed in the past. Novel ideal, right?

In an age where the Dallas Cowboys foolishly paid a running back and linebacker based on past performances, only to be bitten badly by underachievement, basing a contract on the future seems like a smart shift in strategy. But with Jarwin’s season ending injury last year, even that blew up in their faces.

But I digress, Jarwin projects as a breakout player today for all the same reasons he projected as a breakout player last year.

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As discussed in Blake Jarwin’s player profile (linked below), Blake Jarwin has been pretty impressive in the opportunities he’s been given over the years. While 365 yards is nothing to write home about, he’s never played more than 39% percent of the snaps in a single season before. If you project his part-time numbers into a full-time role, you can see he’s not only a legit TE1 prospect, but possibly a borderline Pro Bowler in 2021.

Simply put – Blake Jarwin and Cedrick Wilson are a pair of well-paid pass-catchers on a team full of fairly elite pass-catchers. Neither have ever put up big numbers but both have shown their ability to produce in the opportunities they’ve been given.

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Next. Why TE Blake Jarwin is primed for a breakout. dark

On a team that relies on the offense being able to score at will, it would be dangerous for the Dallas Cowboys to cut ties with guys like Jarwin and Wilson.

  • Published on 05/27/2021 at 16:01 PM
  • Last updated at 05/27/2021 at 14:09 PM