The Dallas Cowboys have a handful of key players scheduled to hit free agency next month. Ranging from role players to starters, some are certain to be playing elsewhere in 2022. One player who may be donning a new jersey in 2022 is fifth year receiver Michael Gallup.
With resources dedicated to Amari Cooper and Ceedee Lamb already, Gallup’s return is far from immanent. In fact, assuming both Cooper and Lamb return, Gallup’s departure is considered a likelihood.
So with that we turn our attention to possible replacements. Assuming money is the primary reason they’re letting Gallup depart…
We look at five receivers who are more affordable and fit what the Dallas Cowboys are looking for in a WR3
Even with the late surgery to his season ending injury, Michael Gallup is expected to be back at the start of the season. As such, those expecting him to sign at a reduced rate may be disappointed. According to Spotrac, Gallup will cost $11.8 million per season on his next deal. Therefore all possible candidates we explore today will be well under their 4-year/$47 million estimate.
As hard as it is to believe, JuJu Smith-Schuster is only 25-years-old. The slot man from Pittsburg has made quite the impression around the NFL since joining the Steelers as a second round pick out of USC. But injuries and a stagnant offense have taken their toll on JuJu’s stock.
Coming off his worst season as a pro, JuJu looks to rebuild his brand. Joining a high-powered offense like the Dallas Cowboys may be just the way to do that.
JuJu has thrived when other receivers are taking the bulk of the attention. In 2018 he pulled in 111 balls for 1426 yards with Antonio Brown alongside him. But without the gravity of a great receiver next to him, Smith-Schuster has struggled. In 2020 he totaled 831 yards as the WR1, and last season he only pulled in 15 balls for 149 yards in his injury shortened year.
Playing in the slot, JuJu would give the Dallas Cowboys a big bodied and sure handed threat inside. As one of the most reliable slot receivers in the NFL, JuJu would help alleviate the potential loss of Dalton Schultz, Dak Prescott’s current safety blanket at TE.
The Dallas Cowboys want CeeDee Lamb to take that next step at WR and that means playing primarily outside. According to Pro Football Focus, since 2017, JuJu ranks in the top-15 in 3rd down receptions, giving Dak one of the league’s most reliable inside men to lean on.