Dallas Cowboys 53-man roster prediction (post-OTA edition) V2.0

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Dallas Cowboys Linebackers

Linebackers (6) Keanu Neal, Micah Parsons, Jaylon Smith, Leighton Vander Esch, Jabril Cox, Luke Gifford

I was tempted to go just five deep at linebacker since the options are so strong here but realized the Dallas Cowboys adore the linebacker position on special teams so the chances they do so (just so we can keep Reggie Robinson or Jayron Kearse) is pretty slim.

Where I deviated from last time is keeping Luke Gifford on the roster over Francis Bernard. Bernard is strong player who I like quite a bit, but his physical limitations cap his ceiling and that’s why I’m going back to Luke Gifford here.

As you might remember, Gifford has a nose for the football. That’s going to get him an extra look on this new coaching staff that’s focusing on turnovers. And standing 6-foot-3, 243lbs, he fits the profile the Dallas Cowboys like in a prospect.

Joining him as a developmental prospect is Jabril Cox. While I think Cox will be a steady contributor on passing downs this year, I think the depth on the roster will severely limit his snaps. That said, I expect him to be LB2 next to Micah Parsons in 2022 so we can’t sleep on him as a player.

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Speaking of Parsons, I expect their first pick in the draft to play a variety of roles in 2021. He’ll likely play some off-ball linebacker as well as some edge. He won’t get the most snaps of the bunch but he’ll be used often. The most snaps will likely go to Keanu Neal at WILL. He’s the prize of free agency and should have a big impact on this defense. Rounding it out is Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith. They are playing their last seasons in Dallas and will play in a rotation at WILL and MIKE, respectively.

Dallas Cowboys 53-man roster conclusion

The Dallas Cowboys clearly have more players than final roster spots. Some players they’ll try sneaking onto their practice squad and utilize as extra game-day players, but many will go on to play for other NFL teams.

Expect some outside free agent signings to miss the cut and even some highly regarded draft picks. Training camp is going to be important because at some spots (defensive line and the secondary, specifically) there are three or even four players vying for one roster spot.

Related Story. Cowboys 53-man roster prediction (post draft edition) V1.0. light

Next. Where does Leighton Vander Esch fit on the Cowboys in 2021?. dark

So what did I get wrong? Who do you think will make the cut and who are they’re bumping off? discuss in the comments…