The Dallas Cowboys are seemingly close to hiring a new defensive coordinator. With Joe Whitt Jr. following Dan Quinn to Washington, it seems Mike Zimmer is the favorite for the job. Regardless, the sooner the Cowboys settle on a new DC, the sooner they can map out a plan for the offseason.
Luckily, the end of the season allows Dallas to get out under from some bad contracts and say goodbye to underperforming free agents. Some players who fit that bill are Tony Pollard, Jayron Kearse and Chuma Edoga.
As always, though, there are players fans will be sad to see leave if they aren't re-signed. Look no further than Tyron Smith and Stephon Gilmore. With Jerry Jones promising an all-in offseason, the team shouldn't leave any stone unturned in pursuit of a Super Bowl.
That could mean bad news for players under contract in 2024. If Jones isn't ready to pull the plug on these Cowboys, some fans definitely are.
4. Brandin Cooks, WR
Not every fan is ready to move on from Brandin Cooks, but can't we all admit his 2023 season was somewhat disappointing? Cooks has had at least 1,000 receiving yards on every team he's played for, including the Saints, Patriots, Rams, and pre-C.J.-Stroud Texans. That streak was snapped this year.
Granted, Cooks' slow start can be attributed to the Cowboys making Michael Gallup a focal point early in the season. As a result, Cooks managed 63 receiving yards in the first four games combined and he didn't have his first 100-yard game until Week 9. That was his only 100-yard effort and he was held under 50 receiving yards in a whopping 14 games.
While CeeDee Lamb shattered multiple Cowboys records and proved capable of carrying the offense, he was asked to do too much. Ultimately, Cooks' 2023 season was almost a carbon copy of Cedrick Wilson's (remember him?) 2021 season.
The Cowboys would be silly to move on from Cooks unless they get a great trade offer, but they'd be just as foolish to run it back with him as WR2. He provided a needed jolt and came up clutch, but there's always room for improvement.
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