3 Cowboys Starters Who Will Get Benched This Season

Three Cowboys players who could be benched during the 2023 NFL season.
Three Cowboys players who could be benched during the 2023 NFL season. / Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports
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2. Jake Ferguson

Jake Ferguson's another player with rookie competition looming. Things were looking up for the 2022 fourth-round pick after Dalton Schultz's departure, putting him in prime position to be TE1.

However, the Cowboys went out and then drafted Michigan product Luke Schoonmaker in the second round of this year's draft with the No. 58 overall selection. The use of premium draft capital immediately jumps out here. That's a big price to pay for a TE prospect, and one some didn't agree with. But Dallas wouldn't have splurged if it didn't have doubts about its options at the position.

It's difficult to feel confident in Ferguson remaining as The Guy all season long. Though rookie years are infamously tough for tight ends, we also just saw Kyle Pitts tear it up two years ago, which quieted that narrative a bit. Schoonmaker isn't a Pitts-level talent, but the Cowboys will certainly want to see what they've got at the very least when the regular season rolls around.

Pivoting from Ferguson, who was a fourth-round pick just one year, to Schoonmaker this fast shows just how shaky the incumbent's footing is. One bad week is all it's going to take for Mike McCarthy to consider a switch. I don't have the confidence in Ferguson to hold off the highly regarded young tight end throughout 2023.