HAPPY TRAILS TO FORMER COWBOY: Dallas DL Jarius Wynn signs with Buffalo Bills | NFL Free Agency 2014
IRVING, Texas – Another member of last year’s defensive line in Dallas will be playing with another team in 2014.
The Bills signed former Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman Jarius Wynn, an unrestricted free agent, to a one-year deal Tuesday.
Wynn signed with the Cowboys on Oct. 17, 2013, and made his debut with the team just three days later, helping to hold LeSean McCoy to just 55 yards on 18 carries. His best game with the Dallas Cowboys may have been his second time playing the Eagles, when he notched two tackles, a sack and a tackle for loss in the season finale.
He was one of the few linemen signed in the middle of the year to stick the rest of the way, playing a total of 10 games with the Cowboys.
Wynn’s versatility was crucial on a defensive line ravaged by injuries. He was able to play inside when needed and bump outside to end to provide a rush. He even started for Jason Hatcher against the Saints when the defensive tackle was out with a stinger.
Wynn finished with 12 tackles, a sack, three tackles for loss and six quarterback pressures during his time in Dallas. He also played in five games with the Chargers in 2013 and recorded a sack.
His production last season would suggest he’d be a possible fit to return to the Cowboys in 2014, but Buffalo scooped him up. If Wynn is active for the Bills next season, it will mark his fifth different team he’s played for since joining the league as a sixth-round pick in 2009.
Wynn joins Jason Hatcher, DeMarcus Ware, and Corvey Irvin as players who were on the Dallas defensive line at the end of the 2013 season that’ll be playing elsewhere in 2014.
IRVING, Texas – Dallas Cowboys guard Ronald Leary ranked third in the league in performance-based pay for 2013, the NFL announced in its annual report.
The purpose of the program is to compensate players whose playing time surpasses their contract for the league year. Leary earned an additional $307,104.43, making him one of 11 players in the league to make at least $250,000 in additional compensation, due April 1.
Compensation does not count against the NFL’s salary cap of $133 million. Each team is allotted roughly $3.5 million to compensate players through an agreement with the NFL Players Association.
Leary started all 16 games at left guard last season, after he signed with Dallas as an undrafted free agent in 2012. He spent the majority of his rookie year on the practice squad before taking over for Nate Livings in training camp last summer.
Upon taking over the starting role, Leary played 71.3 percent of the team’s offensive snaps last year.
Before accounting for his performance-based pay, Leary’s initial salary for the 2013 season was $405,000. He’s slated to make $495,000 in 2014 – the final year of his initial contract before he becomes a restricted free agent in 2015.
Several other Cowboys players benefitted from the performance-based pay program, largely thanks to the rash of injuries that forced unheralded players into the starting lineup. Safety Jeff Heath, an undrafted rookie free agent out of Saginaw Valley State, rose up the depth chart to start eight games and roughly 57 percent of the team’s defensive snaps.
Heath’s compensation for 2013 is $247,273.09. Defensive tackle Nick Hayden, who was also an afterthought on the training camp roster before starting all 16 games, made an additional $156,788.33.
George Selvie, who is now the Dallas Cowboys returning sack leader from 2013, also earned an additional $141,704.71 after earning a starting spot as a late addition to the training camp roster.
All told, the Cowboys made performance payments to 39 players during the 2013 season.
IRVING, Texas – A quick look at new defensive tackle Frank Kearse, who the Dallas Cowboys added to their roster earlier this week.
Frank Kearse: 6-4 | 315 | 5.31 40-yard dash | Alabama A&M.
Has spent time with the Dolphins and Panthers before landing on the practice squad of the Titans this season.
Drafted by the Miami Dolphins in the seventh round of 2011 NFL Draft
Game film studied:
Carolina 2012 season against Miami, Kansas City, Atlanta, San Diego.
Will play as a one-technique in this scheme. Might be better suited to play as an end in a 3-4 but gives you some size inside at the one.
Is not that quick-twitch type of player that Rod Marinelli is accustomed to playing with, but his power is impressive.
Gets more push with power and upper body strength than he does with pass rush moves. Can walk blockers back.
Can be difficult to move at the point of attack at times. Able to hold up against double teams. Observed him holding off blocker with one arm.
Is active when it comes to moving down the line and working toward the ball. Showed some mobility.
Was able to redirect and change directions. Not a stiff moving player. Can play the low block and keep balance.
Had a nice sack against the Falcons where he defeated the double team with power, collapsed the pocket on Matt Ryan.
Was very impressed how he battled Max Unger from the Seahawks. In the plays he had, never allowed him to control him in the running game.
There were some snaps where I thought he could have played better with his hands, and when he didn’t that got him in trouble. Would help him shed blockers better.
LINEBACKER SHAMBLES AND GAMBLES: Bruce Carter expected to return; Rookie may start at MLB | Cowboys Cross-Training
IRVING, Texas – There isn’t a spot on the team more in shambles than at linebacker.
Earlier in the season, it was the defensive line, a position that has seen nearly 20 different players take the field at some point.
But it’s never been as bad as it was, or is right now, at linebacker.
What the Dallas Cowboys finished with Sunday against the Packers should be worse than what they will play with this week in Washington. The main reason for that is the availability of Bruce Carter, who all but guaranteed he will play this Sunday, despite missing last week’s game with a hamstring injury.
Not only playing, but Carter is expected to wear the defensive headset in his helmet, something the Cowboys played most of the second half without last week against the Packers. Carter will make the defensive line calls despite staying at weak-side linebacker.
That means DeVonte Holloman, a rookie who had missed five straight games until last week with a neck injury, and a player who played both outside linebacker and safety in college, will be the Dallas Cowboys starting middle linebacker this week.
Holloman has played other positions before in his collegiate and high school days, but never in the middle. He’ll get that shot Sunday with perhaps the season on the line for the Cowboys.
So what’s the hardest thing for Holloman?
“Knowing what to look for before it happens. Guys have been in the fire before, they can see things coming a lot faster than guys that are just thrown out there or their first time out there,” he said. “Just seeing a couple things before they come at you.”
Holloman was thrown into action last week after both Justin Durant and Ernie Sims left the game against the Packers. And because both players had the headsets, it left Holloman having to get relayed signals from the coaches on the sideline.
“Hopefully we’ll have a guy with a microphone this time and we won’t have to do too many signals,” Holloman said. “Bruce will have the mic to start, and I’ll be the backup with it.”
Durant has been placed on IR with a hamstring injury and it’s unlikely Sims (hip/groin) will play. The Cowboys signed Orie Lemon to the roster and will get rookie Cameron Lawrence ready as well. Lawrence had to play most of the second half on the outside.
They certainly can’t afford any more injuries at linebacker. The team is preparing to play again without Sean Lee, who is dealing with a neck injury that likely keeps him out the rest of the regular season.
As for Carter, who missed one game already due to his hamstring, he knows both time and linebackers are running out.
“We understand we don’t have really any depth right now at linebacker, so if we can get guys back healthy like me, try to get Ernie there, he’s been banged up,” Carter said. “We just need to get anybody, really.”
And while Carter’s season hasn’t lived up to the high expectations set for him in the offseason, he knows he has a job to do, especially if he’s the only experienced starter out there, with Kyle Wilber on the strong side.
“My job is to try to lead the defense to a victory and just play as good as we can. When things get out of hand, try to get everybody to calm down and just try to get back to our game plan and play sound,” Carter said. “I’m up for the challenge. I know what’s ahead of me. We’ve just got to go out there and execute.”
And facing the Redskins won’t be easy, simply because of the way they run the football. Washington ranks third in the league at 140.9 rushing yards per game. Even with Kirk Cousins now in for Robert Griffin III, the Redskins will still rely on Alfred Morris, who ranks fifth in the league at 1,125 rushing yards.
RELATED: Cross-Training allows the Cowboys to shift linebackers during roster crisis
IRVING, Texas – To the Cowboys, the term “cross-training” means learning multiple positions to be ready at a moment’s notice.
They’ve put that term to full use this year. Head coach Jason Garrett said it was essential particularly in training camp to cross-train the linebackers, and that could pay off now with all the mixing and matching to adjust for injuries.
“Sometimes you do it out of necessity in training camp to get through a practice or get through a preseason game,” Garrett said. “But you always want to cross-train your guys because it’s a long season. We understand that injuries happen.”
DeVonte Holloman’s getting set to start at middle linebacker for the first time in his career. Next to him on one side will be Bruce Carter, who many thought would shift to the middle after Sean Lee’s injury, considering he’s gotten experience there before.
Next to Holloman on the other side at strong side linebacker is Kyle Wilber, who began the year as a defensive end. Justin Durant, who played middle linebacker last week, had started the year as a strong side linebacker.
“Sometimes you can’t just simply put the next guy in,” Garrett said. “You have to find the next best guy from somewhere else. So we have done that in the past and it’s benefiting us now.”
That goes to show just how much versatility has been necessary for a defense searching for any possible answers at the tail end of the season.
Holloman said he’s been learning middle linebacker all season, but he never played the position before coming to the Cowboys. He was used to playing more of a hybrid safety/linebacker role in college.
“Coming from a safety to a hybrid guy and then finally playing linebacker, I’ve been learning since I got here, so it’s not much different,” Holloman said.
Holloman was forced into action last week after injuries to Durant and Ernie Sims. That was a tough circumstance for Holloman, but the brief experience he had earlier in the year helped out some.
“We all cross-train each others’ positions, so I was familiar with it, but I hadn’t done it,” Holloman said. “It was going out there and just learning on the fly.”
Garrett hopes Holloman can take what he learns from this experience moving forward.
“He’s a smart guy, he cares about football and he works very hard at it,” Garrett said. “Like some of the other young guys we’re talking about, he’ll learn from the experiences. When you get a chance to play Mike for the first time in the NFL, he’ll go back and reflect on those 60, 70 plays that he was in there and he’ll learn from them because he goes about it the right way. I think it was a good experience for him. He did a lot of good things, and hopefully he can build on that.”
Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said earlier this week he can’t worry about what personnel is on the field for the Cowboys, because in the NFL it’s such a common occurrence for one player to go down and another to have to step up and that everyone’s in the league for a reason.
With his band of backups, defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin said he still has confidence in his group with only two regular season games remaining to turn things around.
“You go in your defensive room and split up and away you go,” Kiffin said. “You ain’t walking, get your heads up, let’s go. That’s the way it works. There ain’t no pouting around. We’ll be ready to play.”
DALLAS COWBOYS INJURY UPDATE: Several key players not practicing today | Terrance Williams pulls hamstring | Special Teams veteran added to roster | Dallas Cowboys vs. Washington Redskins | 2013-2014 NFL Game 15 of 16
IRVING, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys returned to practice at Valley Ranch with several players not in attendance, as expected.
In fact, there were a handful out on the field working with strength coaches and the athletic trainers.
Among those players included DeMarcus Ware, who has been slowed by a quad strain this year, although he has played the last five games.
Terrance Williams (see below), the latest player to suffer a hamstring injury, was on the field going through stretches, along with Morris Claiborne (hamstring) and Ernie Sims (groin/hip). Wide receiver Dwayne Harris was also in that group as he is recovering from a hamstring injury as well.
Defensive end George Selvie was in uniform but standing to the side. He might get limited work when the team turns in the official report.
For some good news, the Dallas Cowboys did have Bruce Carter out there practicing. The team was in full pads and Carter was participating. The defense could certainly use his experience and leadership for a linebacker corps that has been derailed by injuries. Sean Lee was not practicing or on the field because of a neck injury he sustained against the Bears.
If Carter can play, he will likely join rookie DeVonte Holloman and Kyle Wilber as the starters, although Orie Lemon has been re-signed and practiced today. Rookie Cameron Lawrence is an option as well.
On offense, Michael Spurlock (see below) was practicing at receiver, wearing No. 15. He will also help in the return game, especially if Williams is out this week.
RELATED: Rookie WR Terrance Williams suffers latest hamstring injury
IRVING, Texas – Terrance Williams may not be available for the Dallas Cowboys Week 16 game against Washington, coach Jason Garrett said today.
Garrett said at his daily press conference that injured his hamstring during the team’s loss to Green Bay last weekend. He said Williams “may or may not be available” to play.
“Terrance has a little bit of a tweak to his hamstring,” he said.
That news adds another name to the list of hamstring injuries the 2013-2014 Dallas Cowboys have suffered since the season started. For those keeping track, Sean Lee, Justin Durant, Morris Claiborne, Dwayne Harris, Bruce Carter, Barry Church, Miles Austin, Danny McCray, Lance Dunbar, Dez Bryant, Gavin Escobar and now Terrence Williams have all dealt with hamstring problems for varying amounts of time.
Garrett also said that Harris’ injury status is also undetermined for the Redskins game. The loss of both players would be a blow to the Cowboys’ depth at receiver, but it would also leave the team without its preferred punt and kick returners.
The Dallas Cowboys are looking into “contingency plans” in the event neither receiver is able to go, including signing of veteran return man Michael Spurlock (see below).
“We have to make sure we have some options. Joseph Randle is certainly in the mix there – someone who has done that before,” Garrett said. “We signed Michael Spurlock to come in. He’s been a returner in this league – both a punt returner and a kickoff returner. He also helps with our depth at receiver. Those are all the factors involved.”
The continued theme of hamstring injuries is something that has drawn more attention as the season has gone on. With such an inordinate amount of players sidelined with hamstrings, Garrett said it’s something the team is actively trying to address.
“It’s an ongoing thing. It’s not like we’re saying ‘Hey, we’ll figure that out.’ We’re talking about it now – what we can do a better job of,” he said. “We’ll see. We’ll evaluate what we’re doing, what other teams are doing, who’s doing it best, who’s not doing it well – see if there’s some common ground there.”
Spurlock should be able to help with wide receiver depth, should Harris and Williams sit out. Garrett said the availability of Escobar and James Hanna at tight end may offset the need to add other receivers to the roster.
RELATED: Dallas Cowboys sign special teams veteran receiver Michael Spurlock
IRVING, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys need all the confidence they can get this week as they head to Washington in a game they need to win to likely keep their season alive.
And while they’ve already defeated the Washington Redskins 31-16 back in mid-October, the Dallas Cowboys probably won’t have the star of that game this week.
Dwayne Harris has been ailing with a nagging hamstring injury that has forced him out of two of the last three games. He’ll likely miss this week’s game in Washington as well and with that, he might not be back for the rest of the regular season.
So in an attempt to add a veteran presence who can at least try to fill in for the do-it-all Harris, the Cowboys have signed veteran Michael Spurlock, who reunites once again with special teams coach Rich Bisaccia.
Spurlock has played for Bisaccia in both Tampa Bay and San Diego, although he played nine games in Detroit this year.
Like Harris, Spurlock has experience as a punt returner, kick returner and also covers kicks. For his career, he has 80 punt returns for a 9.0 yard average and 104 kickoff returns, averaging 24.5 yards a return. He has five career touchdowns returns on punts (two) and kickoffs (three).
Losing Harris will be a big blow for the Dallas Cowboys. Harris ranks sixth in the NFL with a 30.5 kick return average. And his 14.0 yard punt return average would rank second in the league if he had enough returns to qualify.
Against the Redskins back in October, Harris was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week when he returned a punt 86 yards for a touchdown and later had a 90-yard kickoff return that led to another touchdown.
Spurlock is one of three players to be signed to the roster, along with linebacker Orie Lemon, who was with the team but cut last week to make room for Edgar Jones. The Cowboys are also expected to add defensive tackle Frank Kearse, who was on Tennessee’s practice squad but has played six games in his career with the Panthers.
IRVING, Texas — Defensive end Edgar Jones rejoined the Dallas Cowboys active roster today after an eight-week absence. The team released linebacker Orie Lemon to make room for Jones on the 53-man roster.
Jones suffered a groin/abdominal strain in the Cowboys’ Sept. 29 loss to San Diego, and he was placed on the reserve/injured list in October with a designation to return. NFL rules allowed Jones to resume working with the team after six weeks, but this weekend’s game against Green Bay was his determined date to be eligible for return to the roster.
“With the rules, I feel like I could have come back earlier than the rules were set for. I kind of felt like, around week six, I was feeling back to myself,” Jones said Wednesday. “The good thing about that rule, though, there wasn’t any rush on it. That was the thing I had to be careful about – not trying to rush it and getting hurt.”
The Cowboys traded their 2014 sixth round draft pick to Kansas City in return for Jones and a 2014 seventh round pick after the preseason. Jones played in all four games during the first month of the season and tallied five tackles.
Lemon joined the team from Arizona’s practice squad following the bye week. He played in five games for Dallas during the 2012 season and notched five tackles, which prompted the Cowboys to sign him while Sean Lee and Justin Durant recovered from hamstring injuries.
During that time span Lemon appeared in two of three games and didn’t record a tackle.
IRVING, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys have filled out their practice squad by signing two players.
Tight end Jameson Konz, who played at Kent State, and running back George Winn, who played collegiately at Cincinnati.
Winn will likely take some of the scout teams reps of Phillip Tanner and Joseph Randle, who will likely be used more in the offense with Lance Dunbar (knee) now out for the season. Winn was recently with the Steelers and Raiders’ practice squads. He also spent time this offseason with Houston and New England.
Konz was released off Seattle’s practice squad earlier this year. He’s also played some defensive end in the past with the Seahawks, who originally signed him in 2010.
The Cowboys waived Andre Smith two weeks ago and hoped to retain him on the practice squad. But he was claimed off waivers by the Browns, who also plucked quarterback Alex Tanney from the squad that same week.
Without Smith, the Dallas Cowboys have just Jason Witten, Gavin Escobar and James Hanna on the roster. Konz will likely the scout-team reps at tight end.
With Tanney no longer around, veteran Kyle Orton handles all of the scout team snaps at quarterback.
The addition of Wynn and Konz fills up the squad back to eight players. The Cowboys have three receivers on the practice squad with Tim Benford, Jamar Newsome and Lanear Sampson. Defensive end Caesar Rayford and offensive lineman John Wexler and guard Ray Dominguez.
IRVING, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys now have a true fullback on their roster.
The Cowboys signed Tyler Clutts after he was among five running backs to work out for the team. To make room for Clutts, running back Lance Dunbar, who had knee surgery Tuesday, was placed on injured reserve.
Clutts, 6-2, 254 pounds, played in four games earlier this season for the Miami Dolphins before his release. He has played for the Houston Texans and Chicago Bears. He caught eight passes for 48 yards for the Bears in 2011.
The Cowboys did not carry a fullback on their active roster this season and parted ways with veteran Lawrence Vickers on July 12. They had used tight ends Jason Witten and James Hanna and linebacker Kyle Bosworth at fullback in different situations this season.
With a cold weather game coming Monday night at Chicago and another one possible on Dec. 22 at Washington, the Dallas Cowboys could be forced to run the ball more, but coach Jason Garrett does not believe the signing would be a shift from what they have done this season.
“You certainly want to be able to run the ball and be physical in bad weather games,” Garrett said. “Sometimes you’re not able to throw the ball as well as you’d like because of the conditions and the next best thing to do is run it. Being physical, being able to run downhill would certainly help you in those kinds of environments.”
RELATED: Scouting Report – New Dallas Cowboys fullback Tyler Clutts
Tyler Clutts | 6-2 | 254 | 4.94 40-Yard Dash | Fresno State
Game film viewed:
Miami regular season 2013: Cleveland, Indianapolis, Atlanta, New Orleans
Clutts was a defensive end at Fresno State before being converted to fullback when he made the transition to the professional game. He got his start in the Canadian Football League with Edmonton.
He then made stops in the NFL with Cleveland, where he played with current Dallas Cowboys running backs coach Gary Brown. Clutts was with the Browns in 2011, then Chicago 2011-2012. He played for Houston in 2012, where he worked in a zone running scheme, before finally heading to Miami for the first four games of the 2013 season.
- Plays as a true fullback in “I” formation; will also line up offset and on the line as a tight end or wing (Editors note: Think Jason Witten’s usual spot or sometimes DeMarco Murray).
- Good path to search out defender. Can locate the correct man on the move.
- Shows a good initial pop and strike, but I thought he needed to do a better job with overall sustain. Likes to grab and hold for control.
- Needs to be careful in the way he uses his hands. Didn’t see any holding calls, but they were always on the outside of the frame work of the body.
- Will try and dig linebacker out of the hole. He had times where he was square to strike at the point, then others where he was on the edge and got him knocked off.
- Thought he needed to do better job of running through his man when inside at the point of attack. Needs to keep his feet working once he is engaged.
- Thought he was a much better blocker when he was leading the play on the outside or to the edge. Just played more comfortably when he could work to the outside, find his man, then try to secure his block. Did a better job of staying with his man this way.
- Will strike his man, then work up the field or into the flat. I did not have the opportunity to see him use his hands catching the ball for the Dolphins (Editors note: Because he didn’t have any with Miami. Only receptions were with Chicago in 2011. 8 for 48 yards with 6 yard average. Included his longest catch of 10 yards). Appeared to be good in getting into his route, really saw no issues here.
- Played on special teams for the Dolphins as the right back in the second line working on the two-man wedge. Was able to work to his spot to execute his assignment. Would like to have seen him do a better job of attacking his man, then catch the block to control. Was told that in the workout for coaches, he worked as a deep snapper but really just an emergency option at best.
- Has the bulk and square build to be a dependable blocking full back, but I would have liked to see more nasty play when he got the opportunity. Didn’t see a guy that just hammered defenders with his play. Will be interested if we see that from his play now that he is on this roster.
THE NEXT MAN UP: Jason Garrett’s 2013-2014 Dallas Cowboys find a way to win, even without centerpiece Sean Lee on the field
The Dallas Cowboys are 2-0 without Sean Lee in the middle of the defense, but it’s not like his influence has not been felt.
DeMarcus Ware said Lee remains a big presence everywhere except the field, continuing to work with his replacement, Ernie Sims, like a coach.
“When you have guys like Lee still in there, in the meeting rooms, still teaching Ernie what to do – everybody in this league is athletic – but if you can instill what you do mentally first, especially like Sean Lee, he’s showing them so many things and what to key on, and they’ve gotten better,” Ware said after the Thanksgiving Day victory against Oakland. “He’s still there, but just in another person’s body, of Ernie’s or whatever.”
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said Lee has been missed, but there have been benefits.
“It caused us to do some moving around a little bit,” he said. “It’s probably caused us to see Wilber, who was steady against the Giants and again tonight. That may be a blessing for us.”
Lee said the defense has played “fantastic” without him.
“I think it shows you have a lot of guys who have worked hard, who have stepped up – guys like Kyle Wilber and Ernie Sims, who put in a ton of work,” he said. “And you have to give them a ton of credit, because they’ve been a huge reason why we’ve been able to win these two football games.”
Sean Lee said he is on track to play in the next game, Dec. 9 at Chicago.
IRVING, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys have brought back a player that seemingly had a good training camp but has been on the street for the entire season.
Cornerback Sterling Moore rejoins the Dallas Cowboys this week and will likely play against the Raiders Thursday. Once again, Morris Claiborne has a hamstring injury and is expected to miss the Thanksgiving Day game.
To make room for Moore, the Cowboys have released tight end Andre Smith, who has been inactive eight of 11 games this year.
Claiborne had missed two straight games with a hamstring injury he sustained against the Lions on Oct. 27. He returned against the Giants and technically started the game as the Cowboys opened up in nickel. He played the first half but the injury occurred in the third quarter and he did not return.
The Dallas Cowboys continued with Orlando Scandrick shadowing Victor Cruz all over the field, and B.W. Webb played on the outside, opposite of Brandon Carr.
Moore, who joined the Dallas Cowboys last season off the New England Patriots practice squad, was cut just before the start of the regular season when the team trimmed the roster down to 53 players.
Since Moore was not practice-squad eligible, the Cowboys kept Micah Pellerin on the squad and eventually called him up to the roster two weeks ago. Pellerin was waived Thursday to make room for linebacker Orie Lemon.
Moore was among the Cowboys’ final cuts on Aug. 31 when they made the somewhat surprising decision to go with only four cornerbacks on the 53-man roster. Moore is not a stranger to having to play on a quick turnaround for the Cowboys. Last year he officially had one day of practice before playing against the Philadelphia Eagles on Dec. 2 after he was signed off the New England Patriots’ practice squad.
He finished with six tackles and two pass breakups in six games.
Tight end Andre Smith could return to the practice squad if he clears waivers.
The Dallas Cowboys had hoped cornerback Micah Pellerin would clear waivers last week, but he was claimed by the Tennessee Titans. If Pellerin had returned to the practice squad, the Cowboys would have called him up to the active roster for the second time this season.
Without Claiborne, the Cowboys could use rookie B.W. Webb outside and keep Orlando Scandrick in the slot when they play their nickel defense.
IRVING, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys will add a player they’re familiar with as they enter the weekend with some uncertainty about the health of their linebackers.
Orie Lemon, who signed with Dallas after going undrafted out of Oklahoma State in 2011, will rejoin the Cowboys from the Cardinals’ practice squad. The move bolsters a linebacker spot in need of some depth.
Sean Lee and Justin Durant both haven’t practiced this week after hamstring injuries sustained against the Saints.
The move could also be protection for DeVonte Holloman, who’s been battling a neck injury and just went through contact for the first time since the spinal contusion. The team was going to see how the rookie responded to that.
Lemon was with the Chiefs and Cardinals this year after playing in five games for the Dallas Cowboys in 2012. He registered a combined five tackles with Dallas last year before going on injured reserve after hurting his hamstring while playing special teams in the Nov. 4 tilt against the Falcons.
NFL PRO SCOUTING REPORT: A closer look at your newest Dallas Cowboy – DT Corvey Irvin | DE Caesar Rayford brought back
Corvey Irvin DT, Georgia 6-3 301 4.96 (40 time)
Selected by Carolina Panthers in 3rd round of 2009 NFL Draft
The Dallas Cowboys have added another defensive tackle to the roster, by signing tackle Corvey Irvin, a former third-round pick of the Panthers in 2009. Former NFL scout Bryan Broaddus checked a few of his recent games this past preseason as a member of the Chicago Bears.
Games Viewed: Chicago Bears (Preseason 2013) vs. Carolina & San Diego
- Played both as a one and three technique in a 4 – 3 scheme, would say that he is better suited to play as the three.
- Really nice initial quickness off the snap but needs to win on that first move.
- Tends to play high and upright, when he gives up his chest, he struggles to get off the block.
- When he is free, can get up the field and make things happen, keeps moving and working, did a nice job of working down the line.
- Thought he was a bit hit-and-miss when it came to finding the ball, there were times where he was too tied up with blocker and by him.
- Better when he was on the move, twist, slant, will use pass rush moves to try and free himself, will even try to spin, active here.
- Thought he was much better as a pass rusher than he was as a run player, times where he got too high and washed on the play.
- Needs to do a better job of using his hands when it comes to getting off blocks when playing against the run, again needs to win on that first move.
- Fits the scheme because of his ability to quickly get off the ball, attacking the blocker, but needs to play with better stoutness.
ROSTER RELATED: Cowboys bring back DE Caesar Rayford to practice squad
The Dallas Cowboys added 6’ 7” defensive end Caesar Rayford to the practice squad today. Rayford was cut from the active roster Tuesday to make room for DT Corvey Irvin.
He had originally been acquired Sept. 3 in a trade with Indianapolis. The Dallas Cowboys sent a 2015 conditional pick to the Colts in exchange for him. Rayford appeared in seven games, playing 147 snaps. He made six tackles and contributed one quarterback pressure.
IRVING, Texas — Since May 16, the Dallas Cowboys have signed, traded, acquired, put on injured reserve or released 28 defensive linemen. They saw another, Josh Brent, retire on July 18.
Everett Dawkins and Hall Davis are the latest additions. Dawkins was signed off the Minnesota Vikings’ practice squad to the active roster, and Davis filled the final practice-squad vacancy.
There has been an incredible amount of movement on the Dallas Cowboys’ defensive line. If you remember the Travis Chappelear era consider yourself fortunate.
Check out these transactions by date involving only the defensive line:
May 16 – Signed Anthony Hargrove
June 5 – Waived/injured Robert Callaway
June 11 – Signed Jeris Pendleton
June 20 – Cut Hargrove
June 25 – Signed Jerome Long
July 18 – Josh Brent retired
July 26 – Signed George Selvie and Landon Cohen
July 31 – Cut Ike Igbinosun, signed Toby Jackson
Aug. 1 – Waived/injured Cameron Sheffield
Aug. 6 – Waived Monte Taylor, signed Jabari Fletcher
Aug. 12 – Signed Travis Chappelear
Aug. 13 – Claimed Thaddeus Gibson
Aug. 19 – Waived Chappelear, Jackson
Aug. 21 – Signed Jason Vega
Aug. 26 – Cut Pendleton
Aug. 31 – Cut Fletcher, Gibson, Long, Vega; acquired Edgar Jones from Kansas City
Sept. 1 – Traded Sean Lissemore to San Diego
Sept. 2 – Signed Vega to practice squad
Sept. 3 – Acquired Caesar Rayford from Indianapolis
Sept. 5 – Chappelear waived off injured reserve
Sept. 7 – Placed Ben Bass on injured reserve; re-signed Long
Sept. 17 – Cut Cohen, signed David Carter
Sept. 24 – Cut Long, signed Drake Nevis
Sept. 25 – Placed Anthony Spencer on injured reserve
Oct. 15 – Cut Carter, Signed Jarius Wynn
Oct. 16 – Released Ratliff off reserve/PUP
Oct. 18 – Signed Vega off practice squad; placed Jones on IR to return list
Oct. 21 – Signed Marvin Austin
Oct. 29 – Released Vega; signed Everette Brown
Oct. 31 – Signed Vega to practice squad
Nov. 5 – Cut Austin
2013-2014 COWBOYS ROSTER: Dallas Cowboys sign Everett Dawkins from Vikings practice squad | Manley and Davis fill practice squad
IRVING, Texas – Who’s next to join the Dallas Cowboys’ always-rotating defensive line carousel?
That would be Everett Dawkins, a rookie defensive tackle from Florida State who has been on the Vikings practice squad. Dawkins, a seventh-round pick (229th overall) in 2013, fills the spot vacated by Marvin Austin, who was placed on the waived/injured list on Tuesday because of a back injury he sustained in the last game against Minnesota.
Dawkins (6-2, 300) would be the 17th defensive linemen to play for the Dallas Cowboys this year, assuming he will be ready to get snaps this week against the Saints.
Last week, the Dallas Cowboys signed Everette Brown, a defensive end off the street who came right in and played meaningful snaps. He even had a key sack and forced fumble late in the game against the Vikings.
Currently at tackle, the Cowboys have starters Jason Hatcher and Nick Hayden, both of whom have been dealing with injuries. Hatcher left the game last week with a neck stinger that has plagued him for several weeks. Hayden had to miss a few plays with a lingering back issue but returned and scored his first career touchdown.
Drake Nevis has been in the rotation as well along with Austin, who suffered the back injury in pre-game warm-ups and didn’t play in the game.
In college, Dawkins played 54 games for the Seminoles in four years, playing mostly the three-technique. He only had five career sacks and 11 tackles for loss.
But coming out of the draft, he was considered a high-motor player that would get picked in the middle rounds, but fell to the seventh. However, the Dallas Cowboys had a third-round grade on him.
The Cowboys also signed a pair of players to the practice squad. Guard Phillip Keith Manley (Atlanta Falcons), from Toledo, and Cleveland’s defensive end Hall Davis (Louisiana-Lafayette) were added to fill out the eight-man squad.
Everett Dawkins: Height: 6-2 Weight: 300 Age: 23 College: Florida State
Phillip Keith Manley: Height: 6-5 Weight: 309 Age: 23 College: Toledo
Hall Davis: Height: 6-4 Weight: 270 Age: 26 College: Louisiana-Lafayette
IRVING, Texas – A fourth-round pick in 2011, David Arkin never played an offensive snap for the Dallas Cowboys.
Now it seems as if they never will. The Cowboys officially waived Arkin on Saturday to make room for rookie safety Jakar Hamilton, who was signed off the practice squad. Hamilton will travel to Detroit and likely make his NFL debut with starter J.J. Wilcox (knee) ruled out for Sunday’s game with the Lions. Jeff Heath is expected to make his first career start while Hamilton and veteran Danny McCray will serve as the backups.
The Cowboys are high on Hamilton, who even had a fifth-round grade on their draft board. When he went undrafted, they immediately signed him as a priority rookie free agent. He has spent the first seven weeks of the season on the Dallas Cowboys practice squad.
If it works out of the Cowboys, Arkin could likely take Hamilton’s place there. Arkin has practice-squad eligibility and could get re-signed if he’s not claimed off waivers.
The Cowboys have been patient with the development of Arkin, who played various positions in college at Missouri State. Arkin came to Dallas and has played both guard and center.
During training camp last year, he started three preseason games at center. He started two games at guard this year.
But when it came to playing in the game, the Cowboys have not put him out there on offense. Through the first seven games this year, he was inactive in all but one week.
Without Arkin, the Cowboys are down to just nine offensive linemen. They’ve usually been keeping only seven active for the games with Mackenzy Bernadeau serving as the backup at guard and center and Jermey Parnell as the backup tackle. Last week, Phil Costa was active in Philly but has typically spent game days on the sidelines with Arkin and reserve tackle Darrion Weems.
2013-2014 COWBOYS ROSTER: Veteran guard Brian Waters officially signs; injured Eric Frampton waived by Dallas
IRVING, Texas – More than 14 years after he signed with his hometown as an undrafted rookie fullback, Brian Waters as returned home … again.
Waters has officially signed a one-year deal with the Dallas Cowboys, the team he grew up idolizing as a native of nearby Waxahachie and later a standout at North Texas in Denton.
To make room for Waters, the Cowboys will put safety Eric Frampton on the waived/injured list and likely give the veteran an injury settlement for his calf injury. The Cowboys initially kept Frampton as one of six safeties but he wasn’t expected to play this week against the Giants.
Waters, who hasn’t played a snap since 2011 with the Patriots, officially signed his contract late tonight at Valley Ranch. The deal is worth 1.5 million in base salary. However, Waters can earn up to $3 million total based on play-time incentives.
Wearing a T-shirt and gym shorts, Waters arrived to the Cowboys’ complex to sign the deal, then immediately went to the coaching offices, where he met with assistants Bill Callahan and Frank Pollard for what was expected to be a long night of film session.
However, Waters is not expected to play Sunday night against the Giants, and that appears to be the Cowboys’ call. However, he’s no stranger to quick turnarounds. When he signed in New England, Waters joined the team on Sept. 3 and played in 85 percent of the Patriots’ offensive snaps in a win over Miami.
A six-time Pro Bowler who spent the first 10 years of his career in Kansas City, Waters is still expected to practice with the Cowboys on Wednesday. While he likely won’t play Sunday, count on Waters being ready for the Sept. 14 game with the Chiefs, a team he spent a full decade with.
So what does this mean for the Cowboys’ offensive line this season, or even this week against the Giants?
It seems like that could be two different answers.
The Cowboys will likely prepare to get both Ron Leary and Mackenzy Bernadeau ready to start. Leary hasn’t practiced since early August when he underwent a minor knee scope that kept him out of the final three preseason games.
Leary is expected to practice Wednesday at left guard.
Assuming Waters won’t be ready, Bernadeau will likely start. But after that is up in the air. Leary has never started an NFL game so it’s not a given he would keep his role. The Cowboys would obviously prefer for Leary to win the job, but it will have to be earned.
This move also allows the Cowboys to keep veteran Doug Free at right tackle. The club experimented with Free at guard the last few weeks when they were unsure about the status of Leary.
IRVING, Texas – Ex-Cowboys Scout takes a look at newly-acquired defensive end Caesar Rayford from the Indianapolis Colts:
Caesar Rayford DE (6-7, 265) Rookie Washington
Games Viewed: Preseason 2013: Buffalo Bills, New York Giants, Cleveland Browns
Played as a 3-4 outside linebacker in the Colts scheme. Has a different build physically in that he is so long. On tape he looks like he has a short upper body and all legs. Extreme arm length at 36” and you see him use them to his advantage. Majority of his work was seen with his hand on the ground. Has a nice initial take off. Showed some quickness for an inside move against the Bills for a tackle for loss.
When he gets his hands inside, he can buy himself some separation. Was able to keep Justin Pugh of the Giants off his body and beat him around the corner. On the play he brought down David Carr with one hand. In the same game, he was able to get push up the field with one arm extended in the chest of guard James Brewer who is still is on the Giants active roster. Like his quickness for a player so tall. When he wants to get a jump off the line, he can do it. Was able to break down Joe Thomas of the Browns twice, which surprised me. Was able to physically hold up at the point of attack but needs to get rid of the blocker quicker as well. When he stays down, is when he does his best work. When upright, he is no good to anyone.
Will attempt to use pass rush moves as he goes. There were not too many times where he didn’t use moves. Swim and rip were his two best ones. Where he does get in trouble is if he rushes down the middle. I have seen him get push this way but the majority of the rushes that were like this, had nothing to them and he ended up stuck along the line of scrimmage. Had a sack against the Bills where he was able to counter back inside after going up the field. Able to work back to the quarterback slapping the ball out of his hand which allowed his teammate to recover for a touchdown. If he gets near the quarterback in the pocket, you see him reaching for the ball. Has beaten tackles for sacks and pressure but has also had production against tight ends and “H” backs that have tried to block him.
His effort and motor are outstanding but when he got tired, his technique really suffered. He played a ton of snaps in these games so it happened to him often. He didn’t look like the same player when he was tired. Because of his height, he doesn’t appear like he is moving well or is that fluid but there were a couple of plays where he was in space chasing the ball and he was moving well. Can see why the Colts kept him in the first place because of his production but really not a great fit in their 3-4 scheme at outside linebacker. Has a chance here as a rotational defensive end and kick blocker on special teams with his height. Can work with guys like this because of their physical traits and effort. Low risk, high reward type of player that was productive against everyone he played.
HOLD YOUR HORSES: Veteran guard Brian Waters remains in the mix after reported workout with Dallas Cowboys
IRVING, Texas – Veteran guard Brian Waters is apparently still in the picture for the Dallas Cowboys this year.
According to multiple reports, the club worked out Brian Waters on Tuesday and are in the process of working out a deal for the veteran guard. In fact, some reports are suggesting the deal is done.
As of Tuesday evening, the Cowboys have not confirmed Waters worked out, much less agreed to a deal.
The 36-year-old veteran, who last played in 2011 with the Patriots, likely would not be ready to play this Sunday against the Giants. However, it’s more realistic he would get himself ready to play in Week 2 against in Kansas City, where he spent the first 10 years of his career.
Waters is a six-time Pro Bowler, making five with the Chiefs and one with New England.
The Cowboys remain confident Ron Leary will be ready to start Sunday’s game with the Giants at left guard. Mackenzy Bernadeau is expected to start at right guard.
If signed, Waters would likely replace Bernadeau, who would then move to a versatile backup role at both guard and center.
And that scenario would also suggest Doug Free would get to move back to right tackle and Jermey Parnell would be the game-day swing tackle.
Excellent graphic courtesy of Lindsay Meares (Dallas Cowboys) …
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