Jerry Jones claims Michael Gallup would be ready if Week 1 were Super Bowl

Michael Gallup, Dallas Cowboys Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
Michael Gallup, Dallas Cowboys Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports /

Perhaps the biggest storyline of the Dallas Cowboys offseason was the state of the wide receiver room. There were several ups and downs. Amari Cooper was traded to the Cleveland Browns early on for what now looks like pennies. Cedrick Wilson was signed by the Miami Dolphins in free agency. The front office added former Steelers WR James Washington to the roster, but the veteran got hurt early on in training camp.

The biggest “get” by far was the Cowboys re-signing 26-year-old wide receiver Michael Gallup to a five-year, $62.5 million extension, securing a great WR for the near future. The problem? Gallup suffered an ACL tear very late in the 2021 season and has been going through surgery and recovery ever since.

Ever since Washington went down, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has been adamant about giving young, in-house guys a chance to compete. Fans were hoping the front office would bring in veteran talent, but instead watched guys like Simi Fehoko, Jalen Tolbert, Dennis Houston, T.J. Vasher, and others fight for starting spots on a roster for Week 1.

A recent interview with 105.3 The Fan may explain why Jones was so confident in not needing to look outside the organization. While we were all wondering if Gallup would even be back before Week 5, the team knew much more. It’s hard to believe coaches and staff when they say “everything is going well” and “he’s doing great.” That’s what they say about everyone during the offseason.

At first, all we knew was that Gallup counted himself out for Week 1. Then, we found out the plan was to keep him on the 53-man roster, implying he would be ready and available any time between Week 2 and Week 4. Now, Jones is making it sound like if Week 1 was a make-or-break game, Gallup would be playing. We know the Cowboys owner likes to embellish the truth but this is a great sign for the fifth-year receiver’s progress.

"“If this was the Super Bowl, Gallup would be lining up and playing. If (our game Week 1) against Tampa were the Super Bowl, he’d be lining up and playing. So, we’re going to be cautious – or not cautious, but conservative – with him. He won’t be out there more than likely against Tampa, but if it were the Super Bowl he’d be playing. He’s that ready.” – Jones on 105.3 The Fan"

Cowboys GM Jerry Jones said that if Week 1 were hypothetically the Super Bowl, Michael Gallup would be playing

There’s a lot to digest here. It’s excellent that this team isn’t forcing their recently extended receiver to play on an injured leg. That doesn’t help anyone. However, Week 1 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is one of their biggest games of the year. It’s early, but it’s not like a game against the New York Giants.

Does that mean they should force Gallup before he’s ready? Absolutely not. But it’s not like the Cowboys can afford to take a sailing-through approach against Tom Brady and the Bucs.

Regardless, if Jones is being truthful, this statement gives the vibe that Gallup could be ready as early as the Week 2 game against the Bengals or Week 3 against the Giants — far sooner than some expected back in March.

For what it’s worth, Gallup didn’t exactly have the same enthusiasm and emphasis as Jones. At last week’s Blue Carpet Inaugural Kickoff event, the WR said his start date is “all up to the trainers.” Gallup is excited to be back running routes, but claims there’s a lot more to do before he’s truly ready.

It seems like CeeDee Lamb and two inexperienced players will be out there for Week 1. But, could the Cowboys WR room be in better shape than we thought?