No one was signed by the Dallas Cowboys on Wednesday, but it looks like some things may be coming soon. With the way free agency has gone so far, we are all pretty hungry for something positive to happen.
The rationale is simple: They are tired of missing out on their targets.
Cowboys have taken some free agent hits on players they wanted. Prediction: club will sign a player or two in next 24 hrs to stem tide.— David Moore (@DavidMooreDMN) March 16, 2016
It looks like Moore was on to something. Based on multiple Twitter reports, the Cowboys are going after Benson Mayowa, as our Ryan Ratty summed up. He included a very key element many other reports skimmed past.
One thing to remember is that Mayowa is a restricted free agent. If the Raiders value him and the contract isn't that much, which is something the Cowboys have valued all offseason, then there is a possibility that Mayowa finds himself back on the Raiders, leaving the Cowboys with the same question mark they've had all offseason.
This was the last word on his situation.
Cowboys working to bring in DE Benson Mayowa for a physical, possibly as early as tomorrow, and hope to sign him if all goes well.— Charean Williams (@NFLCharean) March 17, 2016
Mayowa was not really on anyone's radar. Given the shrinking pool of pass rush talent, Dallas likely had to dig deep. They just need to sign him - or someone.
Now they are left wondering just how they will fill their holes.
They have taken a quantity-over-quality approach to their pass rush the last two seasons, hoping throwing waves of pass-rushers at a quarterback can make a difference. They had 31 sacks in 2015 and 28 sacks in 2014.
It is still very much a long shot, given word from various sources that Greg Hardy was seen to be a poison in the locker room, but still you have to ask.
The position is so picked over at this point it could force the Cowboys to reassess their desire to keep Hardy.
The article goes on to make some more palatable points, that the team needs to re-sign Jack Crawford and find a cornerback to open up all options with Brandon Carr and his contract. The team had Leon Hall in on Wednesday, but there was no word of an offer being made to him.
This long Q&A with David Moore of the Dallas Morning News touches on a lot of topics, but the one in the headline is chosen well, since the answer may not be obvious at first glance.
Jerry's indication on why he is leaning against taking a quarterback at No. 4 is because he believes that Tony Romo has four to five more years. Now, we joke because Jerry has said that for each of the last two to three years. So I guess that'd make it up to eight years when he said it. He knows the clock is ticking there. His point is you can't get a quarterback in here too early because you'll lose him. Brock Osweiler is an example. There is a guy who was brought in to be a quarterback of the future and gets to the end of his first contract and goes to Houston. Kirk Cousins is another. Here's a guy who is brought in, gets to the end of his contract and then the club has to franchise him because they want to see another year of him before they make the determination if they're going to bay the $100 million contract in order to keep him.
Lance Dunbar got out of San Francisco without a new contract, and continues his tour. Because he is still recovering from his injury, this may be more about generating interest for later, and the Cowboys can still try to bring him back as well.
This is all about Dallas' own free agents for next year, given that most of their work so far has been in re-signing their own. Two of the biggest names in 2017 are very familiar - Rolando McClain and Morris Claiborne, who just got one year deals.
McClain and Claiborne will be free agents again. Could the Cowboys finally do a multiyear deal with McClain, their middle linebacker, after three straight one-year deals? They did that with safety Gerald Sensabaugh a few years ago. Claiborne is on a make-good deal this year and the Cowboys have been extremely patient with him. If he makes it through a full season and produces, keeping a young cornerback makes sense.
Cedric Thornton is the one outside free agent the Cowboys have signed, and this is a video breakdown of him by Bryan Broaddus you may want to catch.
There is also news outside of free agency, including a couple of draft items.
Sturm looks at a name that may factor in after the first round for Dallas. Jonathan Bullard may be able to find a role, but he might also be a bit too much like players the team already has.
There is nothing wrong with Jonathan Bullard and there are times (like the Tennessee game from last season) where he takes over games and gets you fired up about his output. But, overall, he is the type of guy every team needs up front who can serve more of a utility role and can play both defensive tackle spots and the strong-side end. The question would be whether you would want to upgrade from him in two years because you covet someone who can actually beat NFL right tackles for sacks eight times a year.
The Baylor Bears, once an afterthought in the Big 12, have become a talent-producing powerhouse in recent years. They held their Pro Day on Wednesday, and the Cowboys were heavily represented at the school that is just down I-35 from Dallas. One player who has gotten little notice but that might be worth looking at is CB Xavien Howard.
Howard has the size the Cowboys covet at cornerback, and he displayed his speed on Wednesday with a 4.41 40-yard dash. The junior corner led the Bears with five interceptions in 2015, and he parlayed his first-team All-Big 12 honors into entering the NFL draft early. Howard told reporters that the NFL Draft Advisory Board recommended he stay in school, projecting him as a fifth or fifth-round prospect. Howard has a chance to make them eat those words, as his measurables are garnering him first and second-round consideration. The Cowboys just re-signed Morris Claiborne, but there's always a need for another big, talented corner.
First it was the Cowboys not being America's Team. Now they are coming after the Dallas offensive line's reputation as the best in the league. We will take this idea with a grain of salt.
This looks like some must-see TV.
In a recent episode entitled "The Gang Goes to Hell Part Two" the show took a shot at the Eagles with one character being so dejected with the team's lack of success that he owns a Tony Romo jersey. This of course causes his friends to lose their minds over the betrayal of rooting for the division rival.