Cowboys reunion with former polarizing WR just became very realistic

AFC Divisional Playoffs - Kansas City Chiefs v Buffalo Bills
AFC Divisional Playoffs - Kansas City Chiefs v Buffalo Bills / Timothy T Ludwig/GettyImages

The Dallas Cowboys continue to use the salary cap as an excuse for their limited spending this offseason. The way Dallas has pinched it pennies in free agency made a splash signing or blockbuster trade unrealistic. Therefore, it wasn't a surprise that Stefon Diggs wasn't traded to the Cowboys.

Despite the best efforts of Trevon Diggs and Cowboys fans to reunite the Diggs brothers, the longtime Bills star was dealt to the Texans on Wednesday in a move that sent shockwaves around the NFL. The trade is a clear indicator that Houston is all-in to win a Super Bowl while stud quarterback C.J. Stroud is on a rookie contract.

While Cowboys fans are disappointed that Diggs isn't headed to Dallas, the deal could clear a pathway for the team to upgrade its roster.

The Texans are absolutely stacked at receiver now. Diggs, Nico Collins and Tank Dell form arguably the best starting trio in the league, but they also have strong depth options in veteran Robert Woods 2022 second-round pick John Metchie III and old friend Noah Brown.

Cowboys could reunite with former WR Noah Brown after Stefon Diggs trade

It stands to reason that Houston will make one of Woods, Metchie or Brown expendable. Cutting Woods with a post-June 1 designation would save $4.955 million against the cap, but it would also come with $4.75 million in dead money.

It's not crazy to think that the Texans will want to keep a veteran like Woods for leadership, especially now that the hot-tempered Diggs is in the room. Conversely, teams could be attracted to Metchie's rookie deal. Metchie has overcome acute promyelocytic leukemia that cost him his entire rookie season.

Brown, though, would make the most sense for the Cowboys. A release is unlikely, but the Texans would save $2.588 million by trading Brown after June 1. The dead cap hit would be a palatable $1 million. Assuming Brown would go for a seventh-round pick, Dallas could be tempted to reunite with their former WR that they used a seventh-rounder to draft back in 2018.

The Cowboys need a WR3 after they released longtime starter Michael Gallup. Fans are bullish on Jalen Tolbert, but he hasn't showed anything to warrant being the clearcut third option. Injuries limited Brown to 10 games in 2023, but he became a reliable target for Stroud.

Brown's 567 receiving yards were a career-high and he would have set personal bests in targets and catches if he stayed healthy. Showcasing his big-play ability, Brown ranked fourth among WRs with 17.2 yards per catch and 6.9 yards after the catch per reception, per Pro Football Focus.

In a perfect world, Brown would be the Cowboys WR4, but he'd be an upgrade over Gallup and potentially Tolbert given his ability to block in the run game and play special teams. Brown wouldn't be our first choice, but a reunion is certainly on the table after the Texans traded for Diggs and given how Dallas has operated this offseason.

More Cowboys news and analysis