The Dallas Cowboys will face off against a familiar face on Thanksgiving. But did the team do the right thing allowing Cole Beasley to get away?
To start the 2018 NFL regular season, Cole Beasley was considered to be the Dallas Cowboys‘ top wide receiver. After parting ways with longtime wideout Dez Bryant, the Cowboys opted to implement a receiver-by-committee approach.
Beasley spearheaded that group, which also consisted of the newly-signed Allen Hurns, Terrence Williams, rookie Michael Gallup, Tavon Austin, Deonte Thompson, and Noah Brown. But after losing five of their first eight games, the Cowboys ditched the receiver-by-committee experiment and sent their first round draft pick in 2019 to the Oakland Raiders for Pro Bowl wideout Amari Cooper.
The presence of Cooper made all the difference, allowing the Cowboys to win seven of their final eight games, finish the season with a 10-6 record, and win the NFC East thereby securing the team a spot in the playoffs.
But Cooper’s presence, in part, also allowed the Cowboys to move on from Beasley this offseason. After spending his entire seven-year career playing in Dallas, Cole became a free agent. And the Buffalo Bills signed the 30-year old slot receiver to a four-year, $29 million contract.
In response, the Cowboys signed longtime Green Bay Packers receiver Randall Cobb to fill the role left by Beasley. The 29-year old Cobb inked a one-year, $5 million deal to play for America’s Team.
So far this season, Beasley has recorded 49 receptions for 525 yards and four touchdowns in 11 games for Buffalo. He’s been targeted 74 times and has a catch percentage of 66.2. Beasley is second on the team in receiving behind John Brown.
In comparison, and on the league’s top passing offense, Cobb has recorded 39 receptions for 581 yards and three scores. He’s been targeted 60 times and has a catch percentage of 65.0. Cobb ranks fourth on the team in receptions and third in receiving yards. According to Fox Sports, he’s dropped six passes, tied for fourth most in the NFL.
Outside of those 10 receptions, the biggest difference between Cobb and Beasley appears to be yards per catch. While Beasley averages 10.7 yards per receptions, Cobb is averaging 14.9 in Dallas, the second highest average of his nine-year career.
In Week 13, the Dallas Cowboys and the Buffalo Bills will meet on Thanksgiving Day. And we’ll get to see Randall Cobb and Cole Beasley in the same game, giving viewers a direct comparison. The jury is still out on whether the Cowboys got the better end of this deal or not. But if one of these players shines during the highly-watched holiday matchup, that should certainly sway the vote.