The Dallas Cowboys training camp rolls on, with the first preseason game coming on Sunday at the Hall of Fame game. One big camp question was who will step up at wide receiver, and according to ESPN on July 29, rookie Terrance Williams might be that man.
Dallas drafted Williams out of Baylor, hoping that they could find someone to step up and claim that third receiver role that has been a rough spot since Laurent Robinson left as a free agent after the 2011 season. The Cowboys also hope he can step up in case they are forced to let Miles Austin go after this season ends.
Austin is in the fourth year of his seven-year deal and next year his base salary jumps to $5.5 million. He has been hobbled by injuries throughout the last two seasons, and even though he started 15 games in 2012, he only finished with 66 receptions for 943 yards. Those are not the numbers Dallas needs from their number one wide-out, which is what Austin needs to play like to be worth that money.
That means if Austin under-performs this season, expect Dallas to cut ties.
Terrance Williams hopes to make an impression this year, someone that Dallas can feel comfortable lining up across the field from Dez Bryant. He led the nation in college in 2012 with 1,832 yards, averaging 18.9 per reception, and could compliment both Bryant and Austin this year, giving Dallas the big playmaker they need to stretch the field.
“He has an ability to really put pressure on the top of the defense,” receivers coach Derek Dooley said. “It’s what we loved about him at Baylor, just how he could really generate some explosive plays off the field, because he’s explosive off the ball, he’s fast and he’s a good target. When he’s on the move and he’s down the field, he really can apply some pressure, and he’s doing that out here.
“What he’s got to work on is what every rookie has to work on. Those first five yards are really difficult at this level against great corners, so learning how to beat press and then learning how to do it over and over again, that’s probably the biggest challenge for these young guys.”
This weekend, Dallas will get their first real look at him in competition against the Miami Dolphins. He will have Kyle Orton and then two inexperienced quarterbacks throwing him the ball, but if he can impress with them, his value will skyrocket as fans wait to see what he accomplishes with Tony Romo throwing him the rock.
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