1. Jourdan Lewis, CB
Entering the 2022 season, Jourdan Lewis was locked and loaded into a top-three cornerback spot in Dallas. The Cowboys gave Lewis a three-year, $13.5 million extension in March of 2021.
Lewis was selected by the Cowboys in the third round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Since then, he has been a solid cornerback for Dallas. In 2021, he allowed 43 catches for 591 yards and three touchdowns. The former Michigan product also had three interceptions and 11 pass breakups that season.
In 2022, Lewis was entering his sixth NFL season and was the Cowboys CB3 to begin the year. But a foot injury suffered in Week 7 could jeopardize that for him in 2023.
Lewis missed the remainder of the 2022 season with a Lisfranc injury and still isn't practicing in training camp so far. The 27-year-old veteran has been placed on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list and hasn't practiced with the team at all this offseason.
The injury opened the door for 2022 fifth-round rookie Da'Ron Bland. Bland replaced Lewis, and the rookie corner filled in quite nicely.
Bland had five interceptions, seven pass breakups, and 54 tackles in 17 games last season. The cornerback was a surprise star in his first year and should see more playing time in year two, possibly over the veteran Lewis.
With Lewis still nursing his foot injury, Bland has been running with the first-team defense in training camp. Even if the veteran returns soon, it would be a shock to see him completely take over the position.
Bland has earned his right to start for the Cowboys on defense, which likely means Lewis will see fewer snaps when healthy in 2023.