Category Archives: Chris Boniol – Kickers

RIDING INTO THE SUNSET: Dallas Cowboys Special Teams assistant coach Chris Boniol moving on

RIDING INTO THE SUNSET - Dallas Cowboys Special Teams assistant coach Chris Boniol moving on - Dallas Cowboys coaches

IRVING, Texas – Every offseason has some sort of coaching change and the first one for the Dallas Cowboys this year involves the special teams unit.

And it’s not Rich Bisaccia, the special teams coordinator who has interviewed for two head coaching jobs already.

But his assistant Chris Boniol, a former Dallas Cowboys place-kicker from 1994-96, said he will not return to the coaching staff for 2014.

On Wednesday, Boniol confirmed the Cowboys will not renew Boniol’s contract, which expired last week after he signed a one-year contract to work with Bisaccia before last season. Boniol joined the Cowboys’ staff in 2010 when he worked under then-special teams coordinator Joe DeCamillis.

“It’s a mutual agreement,” Boniol said Wednesday. “Everything has gone great the last four years. It’s just time for me to move on. It’s been a good run.”

Boniol said he leaves the organization on nothing but good terms. Boniol said he was especially grateful for the way the Cowboys brought him back last offseason when his contract had expired.

“They really, on my behalf, went to bat to keep me around, which I’m extremely grateful for,” Boniol said, mentioning Jerry Jones, Stephen Jones and Jason Garrett. “They’ve been extremely generous and supportive. Just fantastic to me and my career development. I had a real good talk with Jason … he’s a good one.”

The Cowboys are coming off another banner season for kicker Dan Bailey, who ended 2013 with 21 straight field goals, including a game-winner against the Giants in late November.

Bailey was 28 of 30 on field goals in 2013, a percentage of .933 that ranked fourth in the NFL. Bailey made six of his seven attempts of 50 yards or more.

Bailey also improved his kickoffs in 2013, ranking tied for fourth in the NFL with 52.

Punter Chris Jones ranked 19th in the NFL with a 45.0 yard punting average. His 39.1 yard net average was good for 20th.

“You can ask anyone around the league – both of those guys – Dan and Chris,” Boniol said of his two kickers from last year. “You’d have a hard time finding better guys at their position. And you’re going to have a hard time finding guys that are that disciplined that have matured athletically and professionally like they have, the last few years. I’m real proud of them. They’ve really grown into true professionals.”

As for Boniol, who owns the Dallas Cowboys record for consecutive field goals made of 27 straight, set in 1996, he said his plan is to continue coaching in the NFL and he’s hoping it will be in a similar role, although becoming a special teams coordinator is a personal goal down the road.

“My long-term goal, that’s always a possibility,” Boniol said of becoming a special teams coach. “However right now, my role that is most important to me is to be an assistant special teams coach in charge of developing young kickers and punters. That’s my gift, that’s really my best role right now for me as an individual.”

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DALLAS COWBOYS 2013-2014 ROSTER: Chris Jones should be ready to compete at punter

dallas cowboys punter chris jones punt is blocked in the seattle seahawks loss - the boys are back blog

Bryan Broaddus takes a closer look at Dallas Cowboys punter Chris Jones and how he fits into the team’s 2013 plans.

Name: Chris Jones
Position: Punter
Height/Weight: 6-0 / 208
Experience: 2 seasons
College: Carson Newman

Key stat: Chris Jones had just 12 punts last season, averaging 45.2 yards per punt with a 40.0 yard net average.

Contract status: Signed through 2013.

How he played in 2012: Chris Jones was one of those question marks in training camp that no one really wanted to talk about. Jones burst onto the scene replacing the injured Mat McBriar in 2011 and punted well enough to allow the front office to not extend McBriar in 2012 thus making him a free agent. To be honest there were days in Oxnard where it looked like that decision was a poor one because of what a weapon that McBriar had become over his years in Dallas and Jones just wasn’t punting consistent enough but he managed to make it to the start of the 2012 and really did a nice job opening night against the Giants. The next week against the Seahawks, Jones had a punt blocked when Dan Connor missed an assignment and the following week against the Buccaneers somehow managed to get a punt off that should have been blocked but it resulted in an injury to his left knee. In his final game of the 2012 season Jones was able to gut out the game against the Ravens after not practicing all week. Fortunately for Jones, he was only called on one time that day but the knee was too damaged to continue the rest of the season and Brian Moorman took over the punting and holding duties for the club. In four games Jones averaged 45 yards on 12 punts and was on his way to the type of season that the front office and coaches believed he was capable of having.

Where he fits in 2013: Gone is special teams coach Joe DeCamillis and Rich Bisaccia now takes over in that role. Jones had a big supporter in DeCamillis but there is no reason to believe that Bisaccia will feel different about Jones and what talent he has. What will also help Jones is that Chris Boniol is still on the staff and will be able to paint a pretty accurate picture of what Jones is to Bisaccia. I fully expect Jones to be the punter for this club in 2013 but the scouts might have seen someone in their travels this Fall that could compete for the job so we will see after the 2013 NFL Draft when we get into mini camps.      

Eatman’s Analysis:

Nick Eatman: He’s one of the injured players people forget about but he was missed. Sure, Brian Moorman has more experience but Jones was better at angling his punts with height and direction. He’s also a good holder for kicks so I would expect Jones should be the punter for this team next year.

Courtesy: Bryan Broaddus | Football Analyst/Scout

COACHES ROSTER: Meet the 2013-14 Dallas Cowboys coaching staff

There have been a number of changes in the Dallas Cowboys coaching staff over the offseason. Here’s an updated list of the assistant coaches and links for more detailed information on each of them. This page will be updated if any other changes are made.

DALLAS COWBOYS HEAD COACH

Jason Garrett

Jason Garrett was named the eighth head coach in Dallas Cowboys history on January 5, 2011. Garrett, who played for or worked alongside four of his predecessors, became the first former Dallas Cowboys player to become the team’s head coach.

DALLAS COWBOYS COACHING STAFF

Offensive Coaches Defensive Coaches Specialty Coaches
Jimmy Robinson
Asst. Head Coach/Wide Receivers
Monte Kiffin
Defensive Coordinator
Mike Woicik
Strength and Conditioning
To Be Determined
Tight Ends/Passing Game Coord.
Jerome Henderson
Secondary
Chris Boniol
Assistant Special Teams/ Kickers
Wade Wilson
Quarterbacks
Matt Eberflus
Linebackers
Brett Bech
Assistant Strength and Conditioning
Bill Callahan
Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line
Rod Marinelli
Defensive Line
Rich Bisaccia

Special Teams

Wes Phillips
Assistant Offensive Line
Ben Bloom
Quality Control/Linebackers
Keith O’Quinn
Off. Quality Control/Wide Receivers
Joe Baker
Assistant Secondary

HAPPY TRAILS COWBOY: Jason Garrett describes difficulties of player cuts

Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett describes difficulties of player cuts - The Boys Are Back blog

Months of practices and four preseason games all culminate in one final cut day, which 22 Cowboys players won’t survive.

That time is 8:00 p.m. Aug. 31, and it’s a day that head coach Jason Garrett called one of the worst for a player or a coach in the NFL.

“I think what makes it difficult is the work that they put in,” Garrett said. “Most of our coaches and administrators are former players. They understand the commitment these guys have made. Anybody who’s been around our football team for the last month or so has seen the commitment these guys have made.”

Garrett, the offensive or defensive coordinator and a position coach all talk to the released player and try to explain why the decision was made, provide them constructive coaching and thank them for their effort. Afterward, their time as a Cowboy is finished.

Dallas has been plagued with injuries throughout the preseason, which could force them to go deep at some positions and light at others. Garrett said it’s not always the 53 best players, but the 53 players who give the Cowboys the best chance to win. No official announcement on the final roster will be made until Friday.

Garrett said the draft picks will get every opportunity possible to show the reason they were selected, but there are other players worthy of a chance. The Cowboys have a history of turning undrafted free agents into top talents, including Eastern Illinois’ Tony Romo and Monmouth’s Miles Austin.

“If you have an attitude that it doesn’t matter where players come from, it matters what they do when they get here, I think you’re more able to find some of those guys,” Garrett said. “That’s been our approach. We preached that to our players from Day 1.”

Garrett said it warms his heart to think about the commitment the Cowboys players made in the offseason to fulfill their dreams.

“We have a lot of discussions about who we should keep, what we should do with different players, what role he might have and might not have, so those are difficult discussions,” Garrett said. “What makes it hard is, in a lot of ways, many of these guys’ dreams have come to an end or have changed.”

COACHES ROSTER: Meet the 2013-14 Dallas Cowboys coaching staff

There have been a number of changes in the Dallas Cowboys coaching staff over the past few years. Here’s an updated list of the assistant coaches and links for more detailed information on each of them.

DALLAS COWBOYS HEAD COACH

Jason Garrett

Jason Garrett was named the eighth head coach in Dallas Cowboys history on January 5, 2011. Garrett, who played for or worked alongside four of his predecessors, became the first former Dallas Cowboys player to become the team’s head coach.

DALLAS COWBOYS COACHING STAFF

Offensive Coaches Defensive Coaches Specialty Coaches
Jimmy Robinson
Asst. Head Coach/Wide Receivers
Monte Kiffin
Defensive Coordinator
Mike Woicik
Strength and Conditioning
To Be Determined
Tight Ends/Passing Game Coord.
Jerome Henderson
Secondary
Chris Boniol
Assistant Special Teams/ Kickers
Wade Wilson
Quarterbacks
Matt Eberflus
Linebackers
Brett Bech
Assistant Strength and Conditioning
Bill Callahan
Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line
Rod Marinelli
Defensive Line
Wes Phillips
Assistant Offensive Line
Ben Bloom
Quality Control/Linebackers
Keith O’Quinn
Off. Quality Control/Wide Receivers
Joe Baker
Assistant Secondary

This post has been revised. Please click HERE.

ROOKIE CONNECTIONS: Dan Bailey wins another one for the ‘Boys

 Dallas Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey

Rookie kicker Dan Bailey has been money all season, making 24 in a row and 25-of-26. That includes his 39-yard overtime field goal that beat the Redskins on Sunday.

“You’ve just got to go out there and execute it when you’re supposed to,” Bailey said. “It’s not all me. I’ve got good blocking and obviously the offense and the defense played really well today. It’s not just me out there. It’s 10 other guys.”

Bailey has been unflappable since missing a 21-yarder early against the 49ers. He redeemed himself in that game with a 19-yard field goal in overtime. That gave him confidence for Sunday’s kick.

“It’s tough to recreate those situations in practice,” Bailey said. “You can to an extent, but yeah, definitely having that earlier in the season kind of helped me mentally with knowing what to expect.”

He is three field goals short of tying Chris Boniol’s team record for consecutive field goals. Boniol, now the team’s kicking coach, made 27 in a row in 1996.

“You know I’m too concerned about that right now,” Bailey said. “The only record I’m concerned about is our win-loss record and hopefully we can get a couple of more wins and keep it rolling.”

After three years of ups and downs with their kickers, the Dallas Cowboys finally seem to have hit on one. He is playing the best of any Cowboys’ kicker since Nick Folk’s rookie season in 2007.

“We all have a tremendous amount of trust in Dan and our whole operation,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “There is too much evidence. He’s done such a good job with every opportunity we’ve given him this year. He has a tremendous amount of poise and is… very consistent in technique. We’re going to keep giving him some chances and hopefully he’ll keep doing what he’s been doing.”

Photo: STAR-TELEGRAM | RODGER MALLISON

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Dallas Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey has a busy day

Dallas Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey (5) hits a field goal in the 4th quarter. The Buffalo Bills lost to the Dallas Cowboys 44-7 at Cowboys Stadium

Star-Telegram/Ron Jenkins

Dallas Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey (5) hits a field goal in the 4th quarter. The Buffalo Bills lost to the Dallas Cowboys 44-7 at Cowboys Stadium

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Dan Bailey hadn’t had this much fun since his days at Oklahoma State. The rookie placekicker was one of the busiest guys on the field Sunday, booting three field goals, five extra points and nine kickoffs.

“I was telling some of the guys, ‘Man, this reminds me of college,’” Bailey said. “Obviously when I’m kicking a lot, that usually means we’re doing good as a team. It was a fun day.”

Bailey connected on field goals of 45, 36 and 31 yards and has now made 22 in a row, which is third on the Cowboys’ all-time list. Bailey’s kicking coach, Chris Boniol, had 27 straight in 1996 and 26 straight in 1995.

“I didn’t even know about it until somebody mentioned it earlier,” Bailey said of his proximity to his coach’s record. “I’m not too worried about that. Just as long as we’re putting points on the board and winning games, that’s all that matters.”

With David Buehler on injured reserve, Bailey is now handling all kickoffs. On Sunday, he had touchbacks on all four of his first-half kickoffs but allowed returns on three of his five second-half kickoffs. The Bills averaged 20.3 yards on their three returns.

“I might have been a little bit tired,” Bailey said with a smile. “There was a couple times there where we had a PAT, kickoff, interception, PAT, kickoff. But I can’t complain. It obviously means we’re doing well.”

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said Bailey missed the opening kickoff of the second half. The ball would have gone out of bounds if Brad Smith hadn’t fielded the ball in bounds at the 17. The Bills challenged the call, saying Smith had a foot out of bounds when he fielded the kickoff, but referee Jerome Boger upheld the ruling on the field.

“That was a miss-hit,” Jones said. “That was not a deliberate attempt of a soft kick on the opening kickoff of the second half. The first thing I did was grab Joe [DeCamillis] and say, ‘Tell me….’ He said, ‘He missed it. I didn’t call it.’ But anyway, we really can say that our kicker played well today.”

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