The Dallas Cowboys selected tight end Rico Gathers in the sixth-round of the 2016 NFL Draft; he was playing college basketball at Baylor University when he decided to pursue a Football career. Gathers said the last time he played in football activities or a game was when he was in the eighth grade. Kevin Patra from Around the NFL reported Rico Gathers said he would become the "next great tight end."

Rico Gathers played power forward at Baylor University until his senior year. His junior year he averaged 11.6 points to go along with 11.4 rebounds per game in which he was named to the All-Big 12 Team and Big 12 All-Defensive Team honors.

He continued his final season at Baylor then decided to enter the 2016 NFL Draft when he felt he could be drafted because of his physical attributes.

That means eight-years ago was the last time Gathers played the game of football, so coming in the league as a rookie in 2016 he and the coaches knew it would take time for him to learn the basics and knowledge of football again. He has unbelievable size and is a great athlete as he stands at 6'6 and weighs 285 pounds. He runs very fluidly and can catch the football at its highest point which basketball has helped him to do. While the physical part of his game wasn't an issue, the problem was his mental aspect of the game. Was he disciplined and patient enough to learn the playbook.?

Rico shows out in Preseason

During the 2016 preseason, Gathers showed flashes of the football player he could become. The Cowboys had to hide him on the practice squad and paid him a contract that was worth more than what the average practice squad player makes because the Oakland Raiders were looking to claim him.

He didn't play in any regular season games in 2016 because of the crowded room on the tight end depth chart, and the coaches felt he wasn't ready mentally to step on the field.

He spent his time on the scout team with former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo who praised Gathers ability to get open and catch the football as he was causing problems for the defense.

In 2017, Gathers showed out in the preseason as he had great showings by catching seven passes for 106 yards and two touchdown passes in which he proved to everyone he has the play-making ability.

He was looking like the player the Cowboys hoped for when they drafted him as a sixth-round pick in 2016. For his strong training camp and preseason, he was rewarded a spot on the 53-man roster as a backup tight end.

Injury sets Gathers back

During a practice in 2017, Gathers suffered a concussion as he and safety Kavon Frazier collided during a team scrimmage. Gathers was placed on injured reserve in the hope of being back in week eight in which he would be eligible to make his return. He returned to practice in week nine as he practiced to get back up to speed, however, the Cowboys decided to shut him down after week 13 as it was revealed he also suffered a jaw injury.

Over the past few months Gathers has been recording and making music, which he plans to do after football.

Anytime if you are preparing your life for after football or any sport that is great, but has Gathers been getting his mind and body right for this offseason?

The Cowboys coaching staff have questioned Gathers passion and desire for football, they feel he is not committed to learning football. Since Jason Witten retired two weeks ago, it has opened an opportunity for Gathers to show he has what it takes to be the Cowboys starting tight end for this season. The question is if Gathers is willing to put the hard work in to claim the position, it is all up to him and what he brings to the table this offseason.