Profile: Gerald Sensabaugh - New Safety Makes Sense

[Note by Grizz]: Continuing our discussion of our new free agents. Gerald Sensabaugh is spotlighted below by Jim Vance. Sensabaugh was brought here to play safety after the release of Roy Williams. Is Sensabaugh the starter we've been looking for? Is he more than a one-year stop-gap? Can Michael Hamlin or someone else beat him out for playing time this year? Read Jim's profile then discuss how Gerald Sensabaugh will fare this season. [End Note]

We all knew we needed help at safety, we knew it even when we still had Pro Bowler Roy ‘Thong' Williams.

Gerald Sensabaugh may not be a sensational player, but he was a sensible FA acquisition for the Cowboys this offseason. He provides them with a young, athletic talent at safety and on special teams. He has played for Joe DeCamillis and Dave Campo who both spent time on the Jacksonville Jaguars staff and no doubt they vouched for him when the negotiations were taking place.

He started his college career at East Tennessee State University switching to North Carolina in 2003. Here's a clip from the North Carolina Tarheel Official Site-

(Sensabaugh) Enrolled in January 2003 after playing three seasons at East Tennessee State University • Came to Carolina after ETSU eliminated the football program following the 2003 season •Started three years at ETSU at safety • Two-time first-team All-Southern Conference selection and was named third-team I-AA All-America by The Sports Network in 2003 • Earned "Super Ram" status in the weight room this spring • Set UNC record for vertical jump (41.5") by a defensive back.

Gerald Lind Sensabaugh was selected in the fifth round by the Jaguars in the 2005 draft. He started 24 games for the Jags, and was credited with168 tackles and six interceptions.

Prior to joining the Cowboys, Sensabaugh took free-agent visits to New Orleans and Kansas City. Our colleagues from the SB Nations New Orleans Saints Blog did a nice write up on him before he decided to become a Cowboy. A quote from the summary reads;

Believe it or not, the Jaguars defense actually ranked worse than the Saints in passing yards per game and passing yards per play last season. Sensabaugh's play, however, was one of the few bright spots. His character issues notwithstanding, Gerald Sensabaugh will be sorely missed in Jacksonville. 

Some rumors have surfaced that Jacksonville did not want to resign him because he had some highly publicized off field issues. There were those who felt he was the lone bright spot on the defense.

His first problem with the law is described here in his hometown newspaper. He was pulled over for driving BMW going 84 in a 55 mph zone. During the stop he informed the officer he had a pistol in the glove compartment and admitted he did not apply for the carry permit. It was a misdemeanor, he was fined and obtained the necessary paperwork.

Though he played in Jacksonville, he still resided in Kingsport Tennessee and would drive his Bentley home for visits. I've never owned a Bentley myself but apparently it has a smooth ride and it's hard to tell how fast you're going, because Sensabaugh racked up a couple more speeding tickets. Somewhere in this time frame he was also charged with reckless driving because he was caught doing a wheelie on his motorcycle.

His most recent and sensational charge was also in his hometown of Kingsport. Here is a clip from the article and you can see the complete story here.

At about 1:41 p.m., Kingsport Police Officer Amanda Lunsford said she saw a black Bentley drive west on Center Street, turn onto Dale Street and circle the block.

Suspicious of a Bentley in the vicinity of Kingsport's public housing, the officer said she ran the tag and found the car was registered to Sensabaugh. The Bentley pulled up outside Crew Cut Barber Shop, 806 E. Center St., and Sensabaugh went inside.

Lunsford then checked Sensabaugh's driver license and discovered he'd been suspended for "multiple violations" and failure to satisfy a citation.

He has a history of speeding, she said, which could have resulted in a suspension due to the points accumulated on his license -- although she added that his failure to satisfy a citation alone could have been what led to the suspension.

Lunsford then went into the shop and arrested Sensabaugh on a charge of driving on a suspended license.

Sensabaugh reportedly was allowed to finish getting a haircut before he was taken into custody.

- Snip -

According to police, he had a Bersa 380, an International Arms AK-47 and a Glock 22 in the car. But jail officials say this time Sensabaugh was not charged for having guns in his car.

According to Lunsford, he had a carry permit this time.

His real issue was not taking care of his speeding tickets because the state suspended his license for his failure to do so. When I read the article I wondered why there was a mention of any guns since he was completely within the letter of the law.

In my opinion, he is not a bad character. When I was younger and would make a bad purchase or waste money my Old Man would say to me, "You have more dollars than sense (cents)" - meaning that I wasn't thinking things through. That's how I see Gerald Sensabaugh. More dollars than sense. He's not a bad guy, he's young and doesn't think things through.

As far as his on the field activity he looks like he is turning into a solid performer. The 6'0 / 205 pound safety had a shoulder injury in the second game of the 2007 season causing him to miss the rest of that season. He returned in 2008  playing in every game and starting in 13.

Season Team Games Solo Tackles Asst. Tackles Total Tackles Ints.

2005

J'Ville

16

19

5

24

0

2006

J'Ville

16

37

7

44

2

2007

J'Ville

2

3

0

3

0

2008

J'Ville

16

59

11

70

4

Career

 

50

118

23

141

6

 

Gerald Sensabaugh will improve our talent at the safety position. A sensible addition, indeed.

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