low risk free agents

Five Low-Risk Free Agents the Dallas Cowboys Should Consider

With free agency officially open, now is the time for teams to retool ahead of the 2024 season. Here are five low-risk free agents that the Dallas Cowboys should consider signing.

5 Low-Risk Free Agents the Dallas Cowboys Should Sign

5. J.K Dobbins

Durability has been a big issue for J.K. Dobbins so far in his career. His last three seasons have been cut short due to various knee injuries including a torn Achilles in 2023. When healthy, however, Dobbins has proven to be an effective runner, averaging 5.8 yards per carry to go along with 12 touchdowns. His best season came in 2020 when he rushed for 805 yards (134 carries) and 8 touchdowns.

Dobbins would likely be inexpensive due to his injury history, and this would give him the opportunity to rebuild his value and jumpstart his career. With the Cowboys likely drafting a running back, Dobbins could be an intriguing option to pair with a rookie and create a formidable 1-2 combo.

4. Shaquill Griffin

With Stephon Gilmore likely done in Dallas, the Cowboys now have a need at cornerback. Shaquill Griffin could be on the team’s radar as an option to help replace some of the production lost in 2024. With a projected market value of $2.1 million (Spotrac), Griffin would be affordable and his veteran experience would bode well alongside Trevon Diggs and Daron Bland. He has shown that he can still play, with 5 pass deflections and an interception in 2023. While Griffin’s best years are likely behind him, he would be a solid pickup for a Cowboys defense that is in need of depth in the secondary.

3. Donovan Peoples-Jones

With the possibility of Michael Gallup being designated a post-June 1st cut, the Cowboys may be in the market for a wide receiver behind CeeDee Lamb and Brandin Cooks. Donovan Peoples-Jones had a quiet year in 2023 with the Lions but proved to be a viable option for the Browns during his four-year tenure. In four years in Cleveland, Peoples-Jones posted 1,837 receiving yards to go along with 8 touchdowns. His best season came in 2022 when he caught 61 passes for 839 yards and 3 touchdowns. With Lamb, Ferguson, and Cooks sharing the bulk of the targets, the Cowboys won’t need to make a splash in the wide receiver market and Peoples-Jones could be the guy to fill the void.

2. Shaquille Leonard

At this point in his career, Shaquille Leonard is a backup at best. He had a down 2023 season in which he was released by the Colts and had an uneventful stint in Philadelphia. With Leighton Vander Esch’s future in question, the Cowboys may need to look elsewhere to fill the linebacker position. While they did sign Eric Kendricks to a deal, the Cowboys are still lacking depth at the linebacker position. Leonard would provide the Cowboys with experience, veteran leadership and the depth that they are seeking The Cowboys were one of the teams on Leonard’s radar in 2023 and if he is willing to accept a backup role, he could be a viable option for the team on a one year deal.

1. Ezekiel Elliott

Could a reunion be in the cards between Ezekiel Elliott and the Cowboys? The door was left open for a potential return following Elliott’s release last season. If the Cowboys do not sign JK Dobbins, Elliott could be in line for a return to the place where he exploded on the season. Elliott ranks third in Cowboys history with 8,262 yards and showed that he still has something left in 2023 with the Patriots. He can get you tough yards on the ground and his pass-blocking ability is above average for the running back position.

With a projected market value of $2.7 million, Elliott’s new contract would be much cheaper than the one he previously signed with the Cowboys (6 years $90 million). He knows the locker room very well and could be a veteran presence to pair with a rookie running back if the Cowboys decide to go that route. It would be a full circle moment and a fun story in what has been a very successful NFL career for the former Ohio State standout.

History has shown that the Dallas Cowboys are unwilling to spend big money in free agency. All five of these players are affordable and are the kind of guys that are right up Jerry Jones’ alley. With plenty of needs to be filled, look for the Cowboys to give these players a shot in 2024.

Main Image:  Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

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