According to an unnamed source, the Dallas Cowboys are interested in David Njoku
It seems as if any NFL player looking to be traded is interested in joining Dallas Cowboys. And if that’s true, could you blame them? After all, one NFL insider predicted this version of America’s Team could be the NFC’s No. 1 seed under new head coach Mike McCarthy this upcoming season.
The latest case of a player being linked to the Cowboys in an apparent trade attempt is Cleveland Browns tight end, David Njoku. According to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com, Njoku’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, has asked the Browns trade his client prior to the start of training camp. And that according to an unnamed source, Dallas is one team that might have some interest.
Now whether this news is based on actual information or is pure speculation is unclear. If it’s a case of the latter, the Cowboys would seemingly make a logical landing spot.
After all, Dallas did allow 11-time Pro Bowl tight end Jason Witten to leave via free agency this offseason to join the Las Vegas Raiders. The Cowboys also signed backup tight end Blake Jarwin to a new four-year contract worth up to $24.25 million in March. It’s a move that presumably cemented Jarwin as the team’s starter.
Dallas also inked free-agent tight end Blake Bell this offseason to a one-year deal after his successful Super Bowl run with the Kansas City Chiefs last year. Bell isn’t expected to threaten Jarwin for that top spot, instead being pegged as a better blocker than receiver to pair alongside the other Blake.
The other tight ends on the Cowboys’ roster include former fourth-rounder Dalton Schultz, Cole Hikutini, and a pair of undrafted rookies in Sean McKeon and Charlie Taumoepeau. That makes for a relatively weak positional group with the unproven Jarwin seemingly slated to replace a future Hall of Famer as the starter.
Should the Dallas Cowboys even be interested in David Njoku?
As for the Cowboys’ rumored interest in Njoku, he certainly fits the bill as a type of player the team has shown interest in before. He’s an underperforming high-draft selection who is still young enough to experience a career resurgence. Njoku turns 24-years of age on July 10.
The 29th overall selection in the 2017 NFL Draft out of Miami, Njoku nearly doubled his production following a modest rookie season, posting 56 receptions for 639 yards and four touchdowns in 2018. But last year, he played just four games after suffering a broken wrist and reportedly being in the doghouse of former head coach Freddie Kitchens, who made Njoku a healthy scratch towards the end of last year.
Despite the down season, the Browns thought enough of Njoku’s potential to pick up his fifth-year option earlier this year, extending his rookie deal through 2021. Having the young tight end under contract for the next two years means Cleveland likely doesn’t feel pressured to move on from Njoku anytime soon.
Although the Browns did sign 25-year old tight end Austin Hooper to a four-year, $42 million deal this offseason after posting back-to-back 70+ reception seasons with the Atlanta Falcons. Along with drafting Florida Atlantic tight end Harrison Bryant in the fourth round of this year’s draft, Cleveland has certainly made offseason moves that indicate they may be ready to move on from Njoku.
But if the Browns are actually looking to receive first-round compensation for David Njoku as another unnamed source has indicated, I can’t imagine any NFL team would be interested. Much less the Cowboys. Njoku has simply not shown enough as a former first-rounder to warrant that type of trade compensation in return.
But another factor to consider is that the Dallas Cowboys do appear to be in-line to receive several compensatory draft picks in 2021 based on their free agency losses this offseason. If the Cleveland Browns lower their rumored asking price, perhaps the Cowboys would be more willing to take a chance on a former first-round tight end who’s still young enough to turn his career around.