The Dallas Cowboys‘ final 53-man roster will be finalized by Saturday afternoon, but we could get a really clear picture as to who’s staying and who’s going before then if the team makes its decisions early. Until then, speculation is at an all-time high as it should be because there are several players likely to get the axe, even though they’re more than deserving of a roster spot. Such is life in the NFL.
For starters, the Cowboys have to address their offensive line. With Doug Free working some at guard and Jerry Jones singing his praises for it, Nate Livings and his relatively hefty contract are likely to get the boot. The former starter has missed the entire preseason with knee surgeries and he could get the axe, which would almost ensure that guys like David Arkin and Kevin Kowalksi make the final roster.
The Cowboys suddenly have several great options in the secondary after multiple seasons of dreadful play at the cornerback and safety positions. However, Dallas has too many promising young players vying for roster sports and not all of them will be kept. After his popularity surge this preseason, one would think Jeff Heath would be kept and the Cowboys would be foolish to let the playmaking star walk. The same could be said for Jakar Hamilton, but some believe Dallas will keep Matt Johnson instead simply because he was drafted in 2012 and not signed as a free agent like the other young safeties.
After his stellar play during the exhibitions, linebacker DeVonte Holloman is almost a lock to make the roster and he’ll likely get plenty of playing time as the season wears on and he grows as a player. Even after Alex Albright was waived, Dallas still doesn’t seem interested in keeping 2012 seventh-round pick Caleb McSurdy or other roster hopefuls Taylor Reed and Cameron Lawrence.
Finally, the Cowboys have to decide whether or not they want to keep Alex Tanney on as a third-string, project quarterback. From his preseason performances, it’s clear that he has a lot of potential and it would be great for him to learn under Tony Romo and develop for the future, but Dallas is all-in with No. 9 for the next half a dozen years, so it’s unlikely the Cowboys keep three signal-callers.
Be sure to check back with Rant Sports for more on the Cowboys’ roster cuts as they’re made heading up to Saturday’s deadline.