6 Free Agents Jerry Jones Will Regret Passing On in 2024

The Cowboys should have gone after these 6 free agents

Derrick Henry
Derrick Henry / Andrew Nelles / The Tennessean / USA
2 of 6

5. Trent Brown, OT

Another loss for the Cowboys happened on the offensive line. Tyron Smith, who was the ninth overall pick in 2011, wasn't retained. He then joined the New York Jets on a one-year deal worth $6.5 million guaranteed. Smith can earn up to $20 million if he hits playing time incentives, and the Joneses claim that's where their issue exists.

Dallas claims the additional $14 million, which would go onto the 2025 cap if the incentives were hit, would be too great to deal with. That's not something they truly know since they're still unsure what the cap will be. Considering the jump in 2024, chances are high they could have swung that without a problem.

They would have looked better saying they moved on from Smith due to his injury history, which would be understandable — even if not popular. They could have then looked brilliant by landing a replacement such as Trent Brown for under $5 million.

Instead, they remained “all-in” by not even contacting Brown, who signed a one-year deal worth $4.7 million with the Cincinnati Bengals. Brown isn't as good of a player as Smith but he's more than capable of starting at left tackle and would have been a steal at that amount.

Again, things could be forgiven if a solid plan was in place. Perhaps that would mean moving Tyler Smith to left tackle, but Mike McCarthy poured cold water on that theory. So as of now, they have no options at left tackle. Or center. When the season starts, they'll likely wish they would have filled at least one of those holes with someone such as Trent Brown.