The Dallas Cowboys finished as the top team in the NFC East, but that does not necessarily mean that they were an amazing team. The NFC East as a whole last year was pretty terrible and it doesn’t necessarily look like it will be any different this upcoming season. The Cowboys should continue to have success in their division in 2022. The following is the pre-draft fantasy football outlook for the Dallas Cowboys:
Dak Prescott still finished as a QB1 in 2021 but there were definitely times that it didn’t feel like you had a QB1. His production fluctuated pretty drastically at times and there were some weeks that he most likely lost your matchup because his fantasy production was less than average. The main factor that I think had an impact on Dak was that the Cowboys’ defense played much better than it had in the previous year. Having a great offense is one thing, having a great offense where you need to play catch up is another thing. The offense as a whole is still pretty much the same outside of Amari Cooper. With the offense and defense not changing much from last season to this season, I have Dak ranked as a low-end QB1 heading into the 2022 season.
The two running backs currently worth mentioning on the Cowboys’ offense are Ezekiel Elliot and Tony Pollard. As we have seen last season Zeke is not the same running back that we have seen in previous seasons. Now whether that is due to injury or not will have to be seen this upcoming season. The Cowboys’ offensive line is a little weaker after losing La’el Collins so that does affect Zeke’s ability to a certain point. Ultimately Zeke is still a talented running back heading into 2022. He should be a low-end RB2 with upside. Pollard on the other hand is one of the top-tier running back handcuffs in the league. Pollard does have stand-alone value as well and can be seen as a weekly flex play depending on the matchup.
The biggest change for the Cowboys’ wide receiver room is the loss of Amari Cooper. The Cowboys re-signed Michael Gallup and signed former Pittsburgh Steeler wideout James Washington. Without Cooper, Ceedee Lamb looks to be the new #1 receiver for the Cowboys. He should be a low WR1 heading into the 2022 season. Once Gallup returns from injury I would have him ranked as a low-end flex with upside in plus matchups. Washington is purely a dart throw that you will most likely be able to add in the last round of your upcoming fantasy drafts.
Probably one of the bigger surprises at the tight end position in fantasy last year was Dalton Schultz. With Blake Jarwin returning from injury most had thought that Schultz’s production was going to be capped, but that was not the case. Schultz was once again the TE1 for the Cowboys and was a TE1 in fantasy football as well. Schultz should have no problem having the same kind of success in 2022. Without Cooper, there will be a decent amount of targets to be had and I could see Schultz being one of the main beneficiaries. Schultz is a low-end TE1 with upside this upcoming season.
As I had said above the Dallas defense improved greatly between the 2021-22 seasons. Now defenses can be great one year and fall off the cliff the next, especially when it comes to fantasy football. There are multiple factors that impact how a fantasy defense does and one of the main ones is schedule. That being said the Cowboys should still be one of the top ten defenses taken off the board in 2022. They have enough talent to be able to give you a safe floor and should offer a solid ceiling when they have good matchups such as the Giants and Commanders, which will be 4 of their games.
Good offenses usually produce good kickers and the Cowboys have been known to have solid kickers throughout the years. The issue at hand is that the Cowboys released their kicker Greg Zuerlein and now have an unknown kicker named Chris Naggar. I would say that when dealing with the Cowboys’ kicking situation I would have a wait-and-see approach until we see if they sign a vet or not.