The Cowboys got a surprising big season from their tight end, Dalton Schultz after Blake Jarwin missed the 2021 season. Dallas placed the franchise tag on Schultz this offseason and failed to extend his contract. With shallow depth at tight end, the team added Jake Ferguson in the offseason.
Dallas selected Ferguson in the fourth round of the 2022 NFL Draft out of the University of Wisconsin. The rookie was an excellent blocker in college, an asset the Cowboys need from their TEs. Schultz receives the ball well but does not block well.
Ferguson joins “America’s Team” to provide help in the blocking department. He dons No. 48, the same jersey number former Cowboys TE Daryl “Moose” Johnston wore. Not only did Johnston win three Super Bowls with Dallas in the 1990s, but he blocked for the man with the most rushing yards in NFL History, Emmitt Smith.
Jake Ferguson’s blocking stood out in his return. He flattened Sam Williams on an Ezekiel Elliott run and was able to pick up a hard-charging Dante Fowler on an outside rush.
— Todd Archer (@toddarcher) August 8, 2022
Getting to Know Jake Ferguson
Growing up in Madison, WI, Jake Ferguson has been around the Badger lifestyle throughout his life. His grandfather, Barry Alvarez, coached the University of Wisconsin for 15 years.
The 6-foot-5 tight end attended James Madison Memorial High School and developed into a three-star prospect. Ferguson stayed in his hometown to play college football for four years.
In his Badger tenure, Ferguson tallied 145 receptions for 1,618 yards and 13 touchdowns. He was named to the first-team All-Big Ten selection in 2021 after catching a team-high 46 passes and adding 450 receiving yards and three TDs. Ferguson’s ability to block, especially in the run game, attracted notice from NFL scouts.
Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy on rookie TE Jake Ferguson: "He's everything we thought he was. You love his tenacity. Bright. Has a clear understanding. Multiple-positional player. I think Jake's the kind of guy who will show up today when you put the pads on. That's his game."
— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) August 1, 2022
Jake Ferguson Takes On Dallas
The Dallas Cowboys need blocking help from their offensive line and tight ends. Last year, Dalton Schultz shined as a top TE in the NFL but is not a top-tier blocker. Sean McKeon and Jeremy Sprinkle return to the squad, but Jerry Jones decided to release Blake Jarwin.
After Jarwin’s departure, the team focused on adding a young tight end to their depth. In the fourth round, Ferguson’s name was called by Roger Goodell, officially becoming a Dallas Cowboy. Head coach Mike McCarthy has a new blocking TE that showed potential to be a solid target for Dak Prescott. Ferguson could also see playing time on special teams.
“The play style that we’ve established here, he definitely fits into that. But the versatility to play on the ball, off the ball, we talked about it a little bit last week. He has experience already playing in a pro punt formation on special teams, just little things like that, just because of the way Paul Chryst plays up there at Wisconsin. It’s definitely that we need more of, and I think Jake’s an excellent fit for us.”
-Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy
The Cowboys get a versatile, dual-threat tight end entering their 2022 campaign. Ferguson has a high ceiling moving forward and should fit well in Dallas’ system. Who knows? If Schultz wants out, Ferguson could be the future starting tight end.
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