The Dallas Cowboys have several needs to fill this offseason and limited cap space to do it, so it comes as a shock that they may be interested in former Cleveland Browns receiver and returner, Josh Cribbs.
According to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Cowboys are one of five teams who have interest in the 29-year-old:
The New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers, Super Bowl participants this year and last, are among about five teams interested in Browns free agent receiver/special teamer Josh Cribbs, league sources said.
The other teams are the Patriots, Cowboys and Cardinals. It's a good bet Cribbs will sign with one of the teams shortly after the free agency signing period begins on Tuesday. It will mark the end of Cribbs' eight-year career with the Browns.
Cribbs spent eight seasons with the Browns and filled many different roles for the team as a versatile option, most notably as a returner. He finished No. 4 in the NFL in yards per kick return and No. 6 in yards per punt return last season, but he failed to get into the end zone in either facet.
From 2005 to 2009, Cribbs did have at least one kickoff return for touchdown, and his career-best mark came in 2009 when he had a total of three. Since then, Cribbs has only been able to muster up one punt return for touchdown and none on the kickoff side.
The label of receiver should be given loosely to Cribbs, however, as he only caught seven passes for 63 yards last season. His best year as a receiver came in 2011 when Cribbs caught 41 passes for 518 yards and four touchdowns.
Dallas is looking for a No. 3 receiver for quarterback Tony Romo to throw to after Kevin Ogletree proved to be inconsistent and flamed out towards the end of the season. Cribbs could potentially fit that role, but consistent isn't exactly a label he enjoys either with his lackluster receiving numbers from year to year.
Sure, Cribbs could help the Cowboys in the return game also, but even those numbers have faded over the past few seasons. If this were five years ago, Cribbs would be a lot more attractive of a return commodity, but now he just looks average at best, and the Cowboys can find average elsewhere and for much cheaper.
With the holes the Cowboys need to fill this offseason and their limited funds, the money spent on Cribbs would be much better off spent someplace else. The Cowboys season won't be made or broken thanks to whoever their No. 3 receiver is, so going out of their way to sign Cribbs wouldn't be prudent.
Furthermore, with four other teams listed as being interested in Cribbs, a bidding war of sorts could ensue and that will jack up the price for him. The Cowboys simply cannot afford to get themselves involved in such a mess for a player they don't even necessarily need.