With the Dallas Cowboys’ season coming to a heartbreaking close, it’s time to start looking ahead. There are 21 Cowboys players who are unrestricted free agents. Wide receiver Michael Gallup is one of them.
The 25-year-old is an acrobatic receiver who had several showstopping catches this season. The problem with a guy this athletic and agile is that he is prone to injury. Gallup only played in nine games for Dallas this season. An ankle injury in Week 1 sidelined him until Week 9. Then, Gallup tore his ACL on a touchdown grab in Week 17 that knocked him out for the remainder of the season and beyond, of course, likely past Week 1 of 2022.
On the year, the Colorado State alumnus had 35 receptions for 445 yards, two touchdowns, and 12.7 yards per reception.
We expect Gallup to be playing at a very high caliber next season, but ACL surgery does require quite a lengthy recovery. Most players take about nine months to a full year to recover. With free agency looming, the WR will have a ton of incentive to get healthy as soon as possible.
We certainly hope that the Cowboys can make room in their cap to keep Gallup, but PFF suspects that this high-flying receiver will get somewhere around a four-year, $55 million deal in 2022. There are plenty of teams who would love to sign a guy with great route running ability, high-level footwork, and good separation.
Jerry Jones and Dallas should watch out for these five teams.
5 potential landing spots for Cowboys WR Michael Gallup if he doesn’t stay in Dallas
5. New England Patriots
The New England Patriots got absolutely obliterated by the Buffalo Bills in Super Wild Card Weekend. Despite the prowess of head coach Bill Belichick, it didn’t seem like much went right for the Pats towards the end of the year. They went from the No. 1 seed in November to falling apart.
During the regular season, New England was 17th in the NFL in receptions. Maybe that’s because their wide receiver corps just didn’t seem to consistently cause any excitement this year. Nelson Agholor had just three receiving touchdowns and 473 receiving yards. Jakobi Meyers had only two touchdowns but had a much more impressive 866 receiving yards. Kendrick Bourne led the WRs with five touchdowns.
The Pats just don’t have a player who can provide consistent downfield range and go up for contested catches as Gallup can. New England tried to do that by developing N’Keal Harry after drafting him in 2019’s first round, but his zero touchdowns on the year show you how well that went.
According to Spotrac, the Patriots have about $17 million to use in cap space. Signing a guy that a growing Mac Jones can consistently count on is a good idea. It seemed that throughout the season Belichick and Josh McDaniels were at times hesitant to have Jones send the ball down the field. Maybe having a guy like Gallup to trust (at least by midway through 2022, when he recovers) would help give the Pats’ offense more versatility in 2022.
Jones has the potential to be a great QB1. He just needs better targets.