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Mailbag: Is There Lead Dog in Tight End Group?


It has often been said that if you've got two or more running backs capable of being RB1, then you probably don't have one. So my question is does that theory apply here with these tight ends? Since Dallas has this three-headed tight end group does that mean the team really doesn't have that one guy who can be the lead dog? Will the Cowboys simply feature the tight with the hot hand week to week? – John Walker/Lago Vista, TX

Nick Eatman: We're supposed to have the answers to these questions, but I personally don't have a clue about this one. If you graded the top three guys - Schoonmaker, Ferguson and Hendershot - I think all of them do something better than the others. That alone, makes it tough to figure out which one will be the starter. It'll come down to which of the three can handle all of the duties - blocking, pass-catching, route-running, playmaking - the best. With the way this team has been drafting lately, I think the fact they took Schoonmaker in the second round suggests he will probably get there as the top tight end, but it might not be right away. If I had to bet money on the Week 1 starter, I'd go with Ferguson. But then again, it wouldn't be a lot of money.

Mickey: I don't know about the tight end with the hot hand each week. The Cowboys do have four tight ends, capable ones, too. But no one with the opportunity yet to be the "guy" as you say. There seems to be great confidence in Jake Ferguson, and my guess is he will earn the first opportunity. Remember Jason Witten didn't become potential Hall of Fame tight end Jason Witten until his third season, veterans Tony McGee and Dan Campbell ahead of him. Ferguson and when Luke Schoonmaker is healthy and ready will be much better blockers than Dalton Schultz ever was. And Peyton Hendershot will be like the downfield threat when the Cowboys go two-tight. And, then there is veteran Sean McKeon, who did a nice job lining up as an H-Back. This might be the best, young talented group the Cowboys have had in quite some time.

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