This off-season the Dallas Cowboys made some of changes on offense, which include two new guards on the offensive line and a new fullback. Those are changes that, unless you follow the Cowboys, will probably go unnoticed. A change that won’t go unnoticed however, is the loss of wide receiver Laurent Robinson.
Robinson accounted for 54 receptions 858 yards and 11 touchdowns during the 2011-12 season. There’s no denying that replacing production like that will be tough for Dallas, but is Robinson’s replacement already on the roster?
Most Cowboys fans are familiar with the names Kevin Ogletree, Andre Holmes, Dwayne Harris, Raymond Radway, Danny Coale and more recently Cole Beasley.
Then, there’s wide receiver Tim Benford, an undrafted free agent out of Tennessee Tech. Throughout OTAs and into training camp, Benford has reporters and coaches raving about his play-making ability.
Before joining the Cowboys, he was named offensive Player of the Year in the Ohio Valley Conference, after posting 65 receptions for 923 yards and 5 touchdowns, his senior year. He finished his collegiate career with 216 receptions for 3,097 yards and 26 touchdowns, and received All-Conference honors.
In an interview Tennessee Tech Coach Watson Brown said he saw similarities between Tim Benford and Atlanta Falcons’ receiver Roddy White. Benford has been described as a smooth athlete who runs sharp routes and uses his footwork to separate from the defender. He was also praised for his ability to find the soft spots in zone coverage.
At 5’11’’, 205 lbs, Benford is built a lot like a running back, and can use his size to gain yards after the catch. He’s characterized as “humble” and earned the reputation of “a very hard worker” through his play and academic achievements.
Benford has certainly taken advantage of his opportunities during training camp and is making a strong case to be considered Robinson’s replacement. There’s still a long way to go during camp and I can’t help but to root for this young man.
After all, playing for the Dallas Cowboys has always been his dream.
“I’ve always wanted to be on America’s Team” Benford said. “That’s who I was brought up watching in my household. It’s a dream come true. Now, I’ve just got to get better every day and keep working to try to get on the team.”
Go get ‘em Tim; I’m rooting for you.
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