A player, coach or issue that should be on your radar as training camp approaches.
Can Roy Williams still play a key role in the Cowboys’ offense? When Dallas moved up in the draft to select Oklahoma State’s Dez Bryant, it was not a ringing endorsement for Williams in this potent passing attack.
The Cowboys now have a very full stable of wideouts, though a wide receiver (probably Patrick Crayton) could be released or traded. They also have one of the best tight ends in the business in Jason Witten and very good pass-catching running backs, led by Felix Jones, whose role as a pass-catcher might be primed for expansion in 2010.
So where does that leave Williams? This is a receiver who has size, strength and body control to make spectacular catches. Coming out of the University of Texas, he also had exceptional long speed. In terms of his deep speed and overall explosiveness, Williams no longer looks like that prospect coming out of college. He now has build-up speed and is more suited to a possession role, but he isn’t reliable enough for such a role. This problem is magnified by the wealth of other options that quarterback Tony Romo has. Plus, Romo and Williams have never shown strong cohesion or comfort with one another.
Does all of this mean that Williams is incapable of revitalizing his career? No, it is possible. But there is no reason for Dallas to wait around for it to happen. What Miles Austin showed us last season is very much what I expect out of him this year, and Bryant can be as good as he wants to be at the opposite wide receiver spot before long. I don’t see Williams playing a key role for the Cowboys this season. I do see him making a few big plays against lesser coverage, but overall, his opportunity for greatness in Dallas may have passed.