Dallas Cowboys: 5 veterans likely playing their last season in Dallas

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports /
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Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports /

Last season for these Dallas Cowboys

Michael Gallup, WR

2022 contract status: free agent

This one admittedly hurts. Michael Gallup is on the cusp of a massive breakout season (I can feel it in my bones) and is going to be sought-after free agent after the season. The Dallas Cowboys have already dedicated big money to Amari Cooper and expect Ceedee Lamb to make his own mammoth jump in production this season himself.

Unless Amari has an injury-plagued 2021 season, the Dallas Cowboys are going to keep him over Gallup. For as good as Gallup is, he’s a another tier or two behind Coop. And since Gallup’s likely to command somewhere between $10M-$15M per season on his next deal (assuming this season goes as expected), that’s far too many resources dedicated to a position the Cowboys are already rich in elite talent.

Leighton Vander Esch,LB

2022 contract situation: free agent

After two seasons in which LVE actually played worse than Jaylon Smith and missed over half the games to boot, the Dallas Cowboys wisely declined Leighton’s 5th year option for 2022. Like Jaylon, LVE was brilliant in 2018 but regressed significantly the next two seasons (“it’s almost like LB success is directly linked to the DL play in front of them,” I sarcastically ponder out loud).

As I predicted earlier in the offseason, LVE is in position to have a strong 2021 season and will likely play his way right out of Dallas. For the reasons listed in the article directly below, I expect LVE to have a season more reminiscent of 2018, just with fewer snaps in a reduced role.

Related Story. Why Leighton Vander Esch could be a star again in Dallas. light

But I’m ultimately predicting Dallas will opt to re-sign Keanu Neal over LVE and will build around Neal, Cox and Parsons for the foreseeable future.