The Dallas Cowboys don’t have anything resembling a number one wide receiver, but Dak Prescott doesn’t see that as a problem.
Dak Prescott understands that he’s under a ton of pressure to lead the Cowboys offense this year. His task is complicated by the fact that he doesn’t have anything close to a Pro Bowl receiver. The good news for Cowboys fans is that Prescott isn’t concerned about his squad’s lack of big name pass catchers.
On the contrary, Prescott sees it as an opportunity to catch defenses off guard. Instead of feeling the need to zero in on a player like Dez Bryant or Jason Witten, opposing defenses will need to focus on a variety of Cowboys receivers. In theory, that will allow Prescott to spread the ball around.
This attitude is a great example of a quarterback walking the fine line between confidence and delusion. Prescott is a quality quarterback, but he’s not Aaron Rodgers out there. He’s going to need plenty of help from his receiving corps to put up solid numbers. The group isn’t hopeless, but it has a lot more questions than answers at this point.
Most people project the Cowboys will start out the year with Terrance Williams and Deonte Thompson on the outside. Williams is the team’s returning receiver with 53 catches for 568 yards in 2017. He may need to double that production if this Dallas offense is going to reach its full potential.
The Cowboys coaching staff also has high hopes for Austin in the slot. Given the fact that he was a non-factor for St. Louis last season, it’s hard to imagine him being a dangerous weapon for the Cowboys this season. He’ll need to drastically improve his performance from last season to even approach becoming an average regular.
There are some potential wild cards on the roster. Cole Beasley always seems like he’s destined to really break out but he’s never really come around. If Allan Hurns can stay healthy he could easily emerge as a starter. The front office invested a third-round pick on Michael Gallup so he’ll get every opportunity to make an impact. The point here is that there aren’t any sure things on the roster.
The lack of proven talent at wide receiver is going to make sure Ezekiel Elliott gets every chance to lead this offense. If he and his massive offensive line can keep the Dallas offense on schedule, then Prescott might be able to overcome his anonymous receiving corps.
If, on the other hand, opposing defenses successfully stack the box against the Cowboys running game, it could lead to real trouble. That will put massive pressure on the Dallas receivers to make plays against press coverage. There isn’t a single wideout roster who you’d trust to make those plays on a consistent basis.
Prescott can talk a big game in the preseason about his lack of talent at wide receiver, but he may sing a different tune once the regular season begins. He’s going to need to elevate his game by several levels to make up for the lack of Cowboys’ lack of ability on the outside.