Final 53-Man Roster Projections for the Dallas Cowboys
Here is my latest projection of the Dallas Cowboys final roster going into the season.
Like any good team, the bottom few on this roster should continue to change, as Garrett and staff deem necessary. I know this list will be debatable, so please feel free to post a comment or to shoot me an email or a tweet, as I always love feedback.
Quarterbacks: Tony Romo and Kyle Orton (2)
Salary-wise, McGee and Carpenter are the same at $615,000, so no cap difference and cutting a QB with starting experience is risky. If the Cowboys can re-sign Carpenter to the practice squad, since he has eligibility left for the squad, they should release McGee. However, they won’t do it until Carpenter is on the practice squad.
Garrett grew up with three QBs on a roster, and I think he likes it that way, even if one is on the practice squad. This projection assumes Carpenter is on the practice squad.
Running Backs: DeMarco Murray, Felix Jones and Phillip Tanner (3)
Cowboys had a nice trio last year, and since no one in camp has unseated any of them, there is no reason to expect a change in the rotation. I do think the addition of Jamize Olawale to the practice squad seems a certainty.
Should the Cowboys sign a vet tight end until Witten is healthy?
Fullbacks: Lawrence Vickers (1)
Best job security on the team.
Tight Ends: Jason Witten, John Phillips, James Hanna (3)
Again, seems like this trio was set in April once Bennett left for the Giants, but depending on the long-term health of Witten, I would expect a tight end to the practice squad for security if the right candidate is available.
Wide Receivers: Miles Austin, Dez Bryant, Kevin Ogletree, Dwayne Harris, Andre Holmes and Danny Coale (6)
Some may say Coale has not played enough to keep a spot, but to give up that fast on a draft pick is dangerous. With the fragile health of Miles Austin and Dez Bryant keeping the diminutive Beasley, it may prove too risky, as his routes are limited. Plus, his brief camp retirement scares me some too.
Offensive Linemen: Tyron Smith, Doug Free, Nate Livings, Mackenzy Bernadeau, Phil Costa, David Arkin, Jermey Parnell, Ronald Leary and Derrick Dockery (9)
It’s obvious to everyone, except the Cowboys, that they need a real center. Hopefully one shakes free during cut downs.
Defensive Lineman: Jay Ratliff, Jason Hatcher, Sean Lissemore, Marcus Spears, Tyrone Crawford, Josh Brent and Clifton Geathers (7)
Cowboys will look long and hard in hopes of getting trade offers on Keynon Coleman and/or Marcus Spears. Coleman in the last year of his deal probably is more appealing as the investment is low, but it all depends on the team's needs.
Look for Ben Bass to secure a practice squad spot.
Inside Linebackers: Sean Lee, Bruce Carter, Dan Connor and Orie Lemon (4)
Lemon wins out and holds down the fourth ILB spot. Nice role player.
Outside Linebackers: DeMarcus Ware, Anthony Spencer, Victor Butler, Kyle Wilber, Alex Albright and Adrian Hamilton (6)
Too risky to let Hamilton hit the open market, as he could become something special in the pass rush. If they can keep him on the roster this year, he should be part of the group to allow Anthony Spencer to leave next year.
Cornerbacks: Brandon Carr, Morris Claiborne, Mike Jenkins, Orlando Scandrick and Mario Butler (5)
Mike Jenkins is the question mark at this spot.
If he is healthy, the Cowboys have potentially the best quartet of corners in the league. If Jenkins continues with the injuries, Dallas would be wise to add a vet that might get released just to be safe.
Safeties: Gerald Sensabaugh, Barry Church, Danny McCray, Matt Johnson (4)
This group goes as Barry Church does.
If he continues to develop, Dallas may have finally answered their safety needs. If not, this could be a long season.
Specialists: Dan Bailey, Chris Jones, L.P. Ladouceur (3)
I vote to keep the established long snapper. No reason to risk such a vital position with a rookie.
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