3 former Cowboys who won’t live up to their new contracts

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The Dallas Cowboys were not busy in the opening week of free agency. While they signed linebacker Eric Kendricks to lead Mike Zimmer's defense and re-signed Jourdan Lewis to maintain continuity in the secondary, they also lost a number of quality players, chief among them being left tackle Tyron Smith.

While Smith is a monstrous loss, fans shouldn't overlook the departures of pass rushers Dorance Armstrong and Dante Fowler and center Tyler Biadasz. Even the exit of former third-round pick Neville Gallimore shined a bigger spotlight on the Cowboys' lackluster defensive tackle room.

That isn't to say Dallas should have kept every free agent, however. When we look back on this offseason, the front office might look smart for allowing a mass exodus. With that in mind, here are some now-former Cowboys who won't live up to their new contracts.

3. RB Tony Pollard

Cowboys fans were sad to see Tony Pollard leave, which was odd because of how many folks were ready to move on after the 2023 season. However, after reports indicated Pollard would take a discount to return to Dallas and that he wouldn't have a sizable market, the fan base underwent a change of heart.

Pollard ultimately did extremely well for himself. Not only did he return home to Tennessee (he was born and raised in Memphis, TN), but he got a three-year, $21 million contract to boot. He secured $10.49 million in guarantees, which is slightly more than the franchise tag he played under last year. There's a potential out in the third year that would make the contract worth $14.5 million over two years.

While $7 million per year is a fair price for Pollard, we're not sure he's set up for success in Tennessee. He's clearly best suited in a change-of-pace role, but the Titans don't currently have a power runner after losing Derrick Henry. Not to mention, they had arguably the worst OL play in the league in 2023.

While 2023 third-round pick Tyjae Spears showed oodles of promise as a rookie, his game is built more on speed than bruteness. In fact, he has a smaller frame than Pollard. Spears is 5-foot-10 and 200 pounds, while Pollard is 6-foot and 209 pounds, per Pro Football Reference.

While the Titans got Pollard at a good price, we're concerned he'll run into the same problems he had in his last season in Dallas.