On Tuesday last week, the Cleveland Browns signed QB Alex Tanney off the Cowboys' practice squad to their 53-man roster. That left the Cowboys a little short at a position that they like to have some depth at. Here's Garrett from early September on how much the Cowboys value having a third quarterback.
"We absolutely value the quarterback position," Garrett said. "We feel like we have an outstanding starting quarterback and an outstanding No. 2 quarterback. We like to have a developing third quarterback, and Stephen McGee was that for us the last couple, three years, and was doing a good job, but at the end of the day, you have to evaluate the whole roster.
We like having three guys around. We've done that in the past. But at the same time, you have to manage the roster."
Yesterday, ESPN's Todd Archer wondered whether the Cowboys should try to "poach" a player from another team's practice squad and suggested that a third QB may be such a target. Well, there's a thought that could do with some follow-up. After all, the Browns stole Alex Tanney from our practice squad, so let's steal somebody back.
The only problem is, it's slim pickings on NFL practice squads if you're looking for a QB. At the time that Tanney was signed by the Browns, there were only 10 other QBs left on practice squads around the league, and this week that number is down to nine. But it's not just the quantity that's lacking.
Thanks in large part to Tony Romo's unlikely rise with the Cowboys, many Cowboys fans think that the next great quarterback is an undrafted free agent just waiting to get a chance to show his stuff. Most other NFL fans are under no such illusion.
Be that as it may, here's an overview of the 10 QBs left on NFL rosters last week, and down to nine this week:
|Scott backed up Nick Foles in Arizona for a part of his college career, and was signed as an UDFA by the Jaguars this year, who kept him on as their PS QB.
|Doege signed as an UDFA with the Falcons this year and has been on their practice squad the whole season.
|Aaron's little brother was signed by the Bucs as an UDFA this year and released before training camp, but the Bucs signed him to their practice squad in October.
|Daniels was drafted by the 49ers in the seventh round this year, was waived in October and claimed by the Seahawks, who in turn waived him in November before signing him to their practice squad.
|Despite a good college pedigree, McElroy fell all the way to the seventh round in 2011 over concerns about his arm strength. He started one game for the Jets late in 2012, was suffered concussion-like symptoms after being sacked 11 times. He was released after training camp this year and picked up by the Bengals for their practice squad.
|The 2013 fourth-round pick has been cut from the 53-man roster twice by the Raiders this season, the last time on November 27. He went unclaimed through waivers both times. Notably, the latest release came a day after the Browns signed Tanney off the Cowboys PS. If the Cowboys had any interest in Wilson, they'd have claimed him off waivers already.
|Stephens spent training camp with the Cowboys this year but was cut during final roster cuts. He was signed to the Baltimore PS on October 30.
|Kinne attended Dallas Day in 2012, but did not try out in Dallas beyond that, perhaps because the Jets offered him a contract. But the Jets released him before training camp and he then played for the Omaha Nighthawks of the UFL and San Antonio Talons of the AFL. He spent the 2013 training camp with the Eagles, was released during final cuts and re-signed to the Philly PS on October 22.
|Dixon was a fifth-round pick for the Steelers all the way back in 2008, and spent three years there before moving on to the Ravens, the Eagles and eventually to landing on the Bills PS.
|Bethel-Thompson, a UDFA in 2011, has spent time with the San Jose Sabercats, the 49ers, the Sacramento Mountain Lions, the Dolphins, the Vikings and the 49ers again, from where he was released on November 26 this year.
The Cowboys already know Stephens and Kinne, so their chances of landing on the Cowboys roster as developmental QBs is probably approaching zero. And I would think the Cowboys wouldn't wager on a journeyman suddenly seeing the light in Dallas. That leaves three UDFAs from this year's rookie class who are still with the team that originally signed them: Matt Scott, Seth Doege and Jordan Rodgers.
Would you be willing to free up a spot on the 53-man roster to take a flyer on one of those three guys - or any of the other guys for that matter?
There's a good argument to be made that the Browns chose well and picked the best QB left on an NFL practice squad last week.
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