It doesn't appear the Dallas Cowboys will be in the market for a wide receiver in 2021. Having locked in Amari Cooper on a long-term deal last offseason followed by the fortuitous falling of CeeDee Lamb in last year's NFL Draft, the team was all set atop its wide receiver depth chart -- Lamb joining Cooper and another playmaker in Michael Gallup. It was who'd step up beneath that hydra that became the question of intrigue, and Cedrick Wilson Jr. answered quickly and in spades. Prior to the season-ending injury suffered by Dak Prescott in Week 5, Wilson was having a breakout season, and it was more than enough to earn him another go.
The 25-year-old entered the offseason as a restricted free agent, allowing the Cowboys at least some control over his NFL future, and they've now made the move to issue an original round tender on him -- sources tell CBS Sports. It's key to note this doesn't guarantee Wilson stays put, because he'll still be allowed to negotiate with other teams, although the Cowboys have the right to match any offer or to let him walk over to a new locker room. If the latter occurs, the Cowboys are guaranteed compensation in the form of a sixth-round pick (the round he was selected in).
Should Wilson remain on the roster, he'll earn a minimum of $2.133 million in salary this coming season.
The club made the additional move of re-signing Noah Brown on a one-year deal which, assuming Wilson sticks around in Dallas, keeps the top five WR slots affixed to the same names that owned them in 2020. That's great continuity for Prescott, who recently inked his , and helps offensive coordinator Kellen Moore -- who signed a three-year extension after being convinced to not accept an offer from Boise State -- continue building an offense he and the Joneses have deemed "special". Like Wilson, Brown has battled injury during his young career that's derailed a lot of his progress, but he was available for all 16 regular-season games last season -- a first in his career.
Brown joined the Cowboys as a seventh-round pick in 2017, and will get a fifth year to prove he deserves something more lengthy when the two talk again one year from now. The same can't be said for wideout Malik Turner, however, a restricted free agent who did not receive a tender from the Cowboys. This doesn't mean he won't have a shot at returning, but it does mean the team is more than fine moving forward without guaranteeing him a couple million dollars. With Wilson tendered and Brown re-signed, they feel good about having kept the WR band together.
Again, that's as long as Wilson doesn't start playing on another team's drum set.