I've said a couple of times on twitter (@BloggingTheBoys) over the last few weeks of camp, that fans need to watch the cut down day activity in three cities to find opportunities for the Cowboys to improve their depth along the defensive line, especially at the Right Defensive end position. Those three cities are Seattle, St Louis, and Cincinatti. So I decided to reach out to a few guys who know those teams just as well as we know the Cowboys, and get some insight about who might become available on August 30th.
Thinking about the Seahawks there is a lot to like about the idea of adding players who have been a part of that team and culture, the team plays a similar scheme as the Cowboys, especially in Nickel situations, and happen to be the best defense the league has seen in several years, making them an easy target for potential defensive help. When I reached out to Danny Kelly (@fieldgulls) from BTB's sister site, Field Gulls, he gave me two names to watch. Both are LEO/SAM players in defensive coordinator Dan Quinn's scheme who would be right defensive ends here in Dallas, and are locked in a battle for the final spot at that position on Seattle's roster.
O'Brien Schofield - 6' 3" 260lbs
When a failed physical caused Schofield's 2 year $8 Million contract with the Giants to be voided this off season, he returned to Seattle were he was a part of their Super Bowl championship team in 2013. In Seattle's most recent pre-season game against the Chargers, Schofield recorded 3 Tackles, 1 Sack, 1 TFL, and 4 QB hits. Following the game Seattle's coach Pete Carroll praised the edge rusher, saying he was "All over the place."
Benson Mayowa - 6'3" 252lbs
Mayowa is a 2nd year player who went undrafted in 2013, and surprised many by making the 53 man roster, although he only played in the first 2 contests. He came to Seattle from the University of Idaho, bringing pass rush skills, but concerns about his weight, (230's in 2013) and ability to play the run, however after putting on ~20lbs in the Seahawks off-season program, he has put himself in position to challenge for the final spot and earn solid snaps in Seattle or elsewhere in the league.
The Rams have provided Defensive Coordinator Gregg Williams with plenty of toys to play with on the defensive front. Robert Quinn, Chris Long, Michael Brockers, Kendall Langford, and BTB draft crush extraordinare Aaron Donald give Williams a formidable group to dial up his devious pressure schemes, however, with that kind of quality through the top and middle of the depth chart, there is a roster battle brewing at the back end as well. According to Ryan Van Bibber (@turfshowtimes) of another sister site, Turf Show Times, there are two names, familiar to BTB'ers, who we should keep an eye on.
Michael Sam - 6'2" 261lbs
By now we all know the back story, and I'm not here to discuss that. Sam is a player who doesn't have elite measureable explosiveness or speed, but he rushes with good technique and has the ability to get low and turn the corner on his rushes. He recorded his first sack in the 4th quarter of the Rams game against the Packers, and came close to another, winding up with 2 Tackles, 1 sack, and 2 QB hits in the contest.
Ethan Westbrooks - 6'4" 267lbs
This name should sound familiar to all BTB readers because of our departed but not forgotten friend KD Drummond (@kdp10for10) and his pumping up of the West Texas A&M prospect. Thus far in his rookie pre-season campaign, he has not disappointed compiling 11 total tackles, 1 sack, 3 QB hurries and 2 QB hits, according to the St. Louis coaching staff.
Even with former Cowboys defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer leaving the same role with the Bengals to become the head coach in Minnesota, the Bengals will play a similar scheme to the one played by the Cowboys, especially with the emphasis on disruptive DLine play. Under Zimmer, the Bengals defensive line seemed to always possess a plethora of pass rushing prowess, so I reached out to Joe Goodberry (@JoeGoodberry) from our good friends at Cincy Jungle, and he mentioned one guy immediately.
Dontay Moch - 6'2" 257lbs
Moch is listed as the fourth right defensive end on the Bengals depth chart, making him a prime candidate to be released in the next couple of weeks as cuts come and go. In spite of this fact, Joe believes he can help someone in a reserve pass rushing role. He shared with me a couple of clips of Moch getting pressure on the edge from the RDE spot, the likes of which would be a welcome sight for Cowboys fans (Moch wears #92).
There will surely be pass rushers available when the rosters get cut to 53 who can help the Cowboys in their situational pass rush for at least the first half of the season as they await the return of Anthony Spencer and DeMarcus Lawrence from injury. These guys could all be waiver wire pickups, or potential trade candidates if Will McClay and company really have their collective eye on a particular player.