The 2013 season was a disappointing one for the Dallas Cowboys, and fans are already thinking about what 2014 will hold. The Cowboys have many decisions to make about their roster, including which players to keep, who might be leaving, and who they should target in the draft. I have been breaking down the Cowboys’ roster position by position. Here, I will take a look at the Cowboys’ tight ends.
One day, Jason Witten will be in the Hall of Fame. Witten’s 2013 season was solid as usual. He had 73 catches for 851 yards and eight touchdowns. He has been one of the most consistent Cowboys in the last decade, and despite the fact that he will be 32-years old in May, he shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.
Witten is also one of the toughest and most durable players in the NFL. One day, the Cowboys will have to try to replace him, but that day does not appear to be coming anytime soon.
The Cowboys have used draft picks the past few years trying to find Witten’s eventual replacement, or at least a player who can compliment him as a no. 2 TE. Two years ago, the draft pick was James Hanna, who in two seasons has caught 20 passes for 232 yards and zero touchdowns. Hanna could still develop into a solid contributor, but he has not made much of an impact so far.
In last year’s draft, Dallas caught a lot of criticism for taking TE Gavin Escobar in the second round when the Cowboys had much bigger needs at other positions. They assured everyone that Escobar was going to transform their offense. He would allow them to play more two-TE sets, and defenses would have no answer for Escobar.
Not only did Escobar catch a mere 15 passes, he rarely saw the field in most games. At 6-foot-6 and 249 pounds, Escobar has the physical attributes to be a mismatch for defenses. However, if he cannot get on the field, it really does not matter.
I do not think the Cowboys should consider drafting a TE this year. They should focus on developing the ones they have. I believe the Cowboys can depend on Witten to have another solid season in 2014. If Hanna and Escobar can live up to their potential, they could be a nice addition to an already potent offense.