Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Dallas Cowboys [Print without images]

Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Chris Gronkowski gets chance to shine

By Tim MacMahon

IRVING, Texas -- The rash of injuries at tight end opens up an opportunity for undrafted fullback Chris Gronkowski.

DajLeon Farr is the only healthy tight end on the roster other than Jason Witten. Farr will have a grand total of two days in the Cowboys' system before Thursday's preseason game against Oakland.

The Cowboys will count on the 6-foot-2, 245-pound Gronkowski to play some roles that typically were filled by a tight end. He'll be used as an H-back or movement tight end, which is what he did most often at Arizona.

If Gronkowski performs well in the preseason, it's possible the Cowboys could opt to keep him instead of a third traditional tight end.

"That’s part of what our fullback can do, if they’re versatile enough to do that," Wade Phillips said. "It’s just the opposite of the tight end. The movement tight end can go back in the backfield and play some, and that gives us a two-back offense where they think we’re in a one-back offense, and vice versa when they think we’re in a two-back offense with Gronkowski.

"He can play a little bit at tight end, and he is a very good receiver. Now you’ve got versatility there. We couldn’t go that way with Deon [Anderson] because he’s not that type, but this guy is."