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Mailbag: Sorting Out The RB Depth Chart? Tight End Development

Based on the tape and scouting reports, Jahad Thomas seems like he can develop into a role player in this offense. Do you believe he can become the second back behind Elliott and/or a third down back?

Bryan: He's not a great blocker and he doesn't have much long speed. I think he can learn to become a better blocker. Like the way he catches the ball so that's a plus. Would have to have a really productive preseason to make them get rid of McFadden. 

David:Ezekiel Elliott and Darren McFadden are locks to make this team, as far as I'm concerned. I also expect the coaching staff to keep a fullback. That leaves Thomas and Alfred Morris to compete for the remaining spot. Thomas has the more versatile skillset, and he can play special teams. But Morris is an experienced starter and could handle a heavy workload if something happened to Elliott. It's going to be interesting to see what the coaches value more.

I, for one, am glad the Cowboys didn't draft a tight end, and am hoping the guys on the roster will step up. If you had to pick one, which is more beneficial to a young player: one year of college football (David Njoku) or one year on the practice squad (Rico Gathers)?

Bryan: Njoku actually lined up and played in games. So did a guy like Mitch Trubisky and both were drafted in first round after only playing one season. I will say this though: the experience that Gathers got with Romo will help him in the long run, but not as much as playing in those games. 

David:We've all heard about how much progress Gathers made on the practice squad, but that's still a miniscule amount of snaps compared to the grind of playing 60-90 snaps against live competition for a full season. I'm optimistic about what Gathers will look like when training camp rolls around. I think he's going to impress a lot of people. But it's still important to remember that he has played in one genuine NFL game – the preseason finale last year. That's just not a lot of reps to lean on.


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