This is an ongoing series breaking down key players on the Dallas Cowboys’ roster.
Size: 5-8, 180
Age when season starts: 28
Drafted: Rookie free agent in 2012
Experience: 6th year
Contract status: Signed through 2018
2016 recap: Beasley just keeps getting better. The receiver is one of the few players who can claim his statistics improved in each of his first five seasons in the league.
Last season? Beasley led the Cowboys in receptions and yards (75-833) for the first time in his career. He scored five touchdowns for the second consecutive season and was remarkably consistent, gaining between 40 and 75 yards in 14 of the games he played.
Beasley emerged as Dak Prescott’s security blanket in the quarterback’s rookie season, a role that had been filled by Jason Witten during the Tony Romo era.
2017 outlook: There’s no reason to believe Beasley’s status will diminish. The slot receiver built a quick rapport with Prescott that should only improve over time. Prescott has shown he will go through his options and get the ball to the open receiver, and Beasley wins his matchups more often than not.
That doesn’t mean his numbers will be the same. The Cowboys’ desire to use running back Ezekiel Elliott more as a receiver out of the backfield and the addition of Ryan Switzer could squeeze a few opportunities away from Beasley. A healthy Dez Bryant also factors into the equation.
But even if his receptions and yards drop for the first time, his importance to the Cowboys offense won’t.
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