4 early free agent targets the Cowboys should consider

Dak Prescott, Cowboys
NFL Analysis Network

The Dallas Cowboys need to primarily focus on bringing back their own players rather than searching for more on the free agency market this offseason, but there’s still some guys they could and should bring in that could help their team.

Rumors surrounding the Cowboys raise a lot of questions including what the team will do with Dak Prescott, Andy Dalton, Amari Cooper, and Ezekiel Elliott, but if all of those players end up staying, the Cowboys could be a pretty good squad next season.

Dallas saw a lot of improvement from wide receiver CeeDee Lamb and cornerback Trevon Diggs, which gives them some solid young pieces to build around. They need to fine tune the tight end position and find a quarterback.

The Cowboys also could use some help at linebacker and strong safety as they could be losing Sean Lee to retirement and they haven’t found a good strong safety yet. If Dallas can sure up a few spots, they could certainly regain the lead in the NFC East.

Here’s a look at four players the Cowboys should sign that could help their team moving forward.

Dak Prescott, Quarterback

Yes, I understand it’s not really considered a free agent signing if they bring back their own player, but that’s just how important it is for Dallas to bring back Dak Prescott. Prescott, 27, only managed to play in five games this season before suffering a fractured ankle that forced him to miss the remainder of the season.

Prescott is as important to the success of the Cowboys as Ezekiel Elliott and Amari Cooper, but he never gets the respect he deserves. Prescott, a two-time Pro Bowler, has completed 66 percent of his passes over his career and has accumulated 17,634 passing yards, 106 passing touchdowns, and 40 interceptions. Prescott is easily the top player set to hit free agency this offseason and he should be the top priority for the Cowboys.

Prescott has been vocal about not wanting to leave Dallas, especially not the way he did this year, and the Cowboys would be crazy not to bring him back. Prescott has led the Cowboys to a 42-27 record over the span of his career and has proven he has what it takes to be a franchise quarterback. If Dallas doesn’t bring back Dak, you can consider their playoff chances very slim.

Jared Cook, Tight End

The Cowboys are certainly in search of their next tight end following Jason Witten and a guy who could do wonders in Dallas is none other than the Saints’ Jared Cook. Cook, 33, has spent the past two season in New Orleans, but has recently seemed to be replaced by third-round draft pick Adam Trautman.

The Saints love the upside Trautman has and they will likely roll with him as the starting tight end next season. Trautman’s emergence pretty much guarantees an exit for Cook and a team that would be able to best utilize him would be the Dallas Cowboys.

Whether or not Dallas does or doesn’t bring back Dak Prescott, Cook has proven that he can adjust to different quarterbacks playing.

Cook, with his size and speed, would be a phenomenal fit for the Dallas Cowboys who have struggled at the tight end position this year. If Dallas wants to add additional versatility to their offense, look no further than Jared Cook.

Denzel Perryman, Linebacker

The Cowboys will likely need to stock up on some more guys who can play linebacker and Denzel Perryman would be an excellent player to add some depth to the team. Perryman, 28, has spent his entire career to this point with the Chargers organization, but 2021 could see him moving elsewhere in hopes of seeing an increased role.

The Chargers acquired some talent at the linebacker position this season when they drafted Kenneth Murray in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft to team up with a slew of talent at the linebacker position in Los Angeles and it left Perryman with a decreased role on the defense. The Cowboys need some linebackers to add some depth and Perryman could be a very good rotational linebacker they wouldn’t have to break the bank for.

The Cowboys have to humble themselves this offseason and make some serious moves that Jerry Jones wouldn’t normally make. Jones loves to trust and develop the players he already has, but if they hope to contend in 2021, they need to shore up their linebacker position.

Bradley McDougald, Safety

Bradley McDougald in his first season with the New York Jets was actually surprisingly impressive despite only playing the team’s first seven games before an injury sidelined him the rest of the season. McDougald managed to accumulate 36 tackles, three passes defended, and a fumble recovery on the year.

McDougald when he is on the field is easily one of the better strong safeties in the NFL, which is an area the Cowboys desperately need some help in. McDougald, if signed by Dallas, would provide the team with some long-term stability at the position as well as give the Cowboys a player who can take the ball at any given moment.

McDougald has bounced around quite a bit in his NFL career, but he could surely find his new home in Dallas for the long haul if he so chooses. The Cowboys already have some solid pieces on their defense to build around, but adding McDougald would take them to the level they need to be at to compete in the NFC.

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