The Dallas Cowboys are in a better spot at safety than they usually are ahead of the 2022 NFL season. However, Cody Benjamin from CBS Sports believes they are top candidates for an upgrade.

In a recent article, Benjamin ranked the top candidates to trade for Cincinnati Bengals safety Jessie Bates. Surprisingly, the Cowboys were ranked second on the list. Here is Benjamin’s analysis on the matter:

“Dallas already has two of the NFL’s top defensive playmakers in Micah Parsons and Trevon Diggs. Imagine if they use some of the $22.5M in remaining 2022 cap space to make Bates part of the equation. Jayron Kearse was a force in his 2021 breakout, but he’s logged just one full season as a starter in the NFL. Malik Hooker is just fine, too, but he’s yet to play a full season and isn’t breaking the bank after re-signing. Jerry Jones loves a good splash, and this one would help reinforce their defense’s title aspirations both in the short and long term.”

Trading Bates away could indeed be in play for the Bengals as the fifth-year pro is reportedly not planning on showing up to training camp after being low-balled by the current AFC Champions. Bates has not signed his franchise tag yet, which would earn him just under $13M.

But are the Cowboys really a candidate to land Jessie Bates?

The short answer is not.

The Cowboys are likely content with their current situation. For the first time in a long while, the team has above-average starting safeties and decent depth. Being a position they have historically undervalued, it would be a surprise to see them give up draft capital for a player they would need to extend right away.

That being said, it’s no question Jessie Bates would be a massive upgrade.

Malik Hooker managed to stay healthy last year but he played in under 40% of the Cowboys’ defensive snaps. Whether or not he’s able to prove to be an upgrade over Damontae Kazee as the team’s free safety remains to be seen, even if Cowboys Nation is optimistic he will be.

Donovan Wilson provides much-needed flex for Dallas at safety, but he is unlikely to be the Cowboys’ long-term plan at FS. Someone like Bates would take care of that concern.

In spite of such question marks, I can’t get behind the idea of the Cowboys being ranked as the second-ranked suitor for the Bengals standout. The idea that Benjamin shares on Jerry Jones loving a “good splash” sounds obsolete to me.

It wouldn’t be a bad idea, but the Cowboys are a conservative front office these days, not a splashy one. Wherever Bates ends up, don’t count on him wearing the Star.

Featured image via News Joshua L Jones