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2016 Dallas Cowboys Roster: The Great Pet Cat Reckoning

Pet cats have been a part of BTB ever since Bill Parcells originally introduced the term to Dallas. How good were your pet cat picks this year?

Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

Shortly after the draft, in what has become an annual tradition here on Blogging The Boys, we ask the front-page writers and BTB members to commit to their pet cats for the season.

The "Pet Cat" is a Parcells-ism, a term Bill Parcells popularized in Dallas when he was the head coach for the Cowboys. The term initially referred to a prospect whom a coach, scout or owner had taken a particular liking to, often based on little more than a whim, and whom they would then try to draft, regardless of what the scouting consensus was.

Among Cowboys fans, the term usually refers to a bubble player commonly found at the bottom of the roster. Some people pick pet cats that are late-round draft picks; that is usually frowned upon as even mid- to late-round draft picks face good odds of making the roster. The purest pet cats are down-roster pet cats, usually undrafted free agents or even street free agents, and for those pet cats to simply make the practice squad is often considered a great success.

The pet cat is often - and preferably - chosen without the slightest factual or quantifiable basis, and that choice then stands in such monolithic grandeur that any criticism of the player bounces off the pet cat owner into inconsequential nothingness like little pebbles flung at Ayer's Rock.

But there comes a time when all the pet cat-ism in the world can't help a player, and that's during final roster cuts. Over the last two days the Cowboys finalized (sort of) their 53-man roster and have signed the following seven players to their practice squad:

OG Jake Brendel, TE Rico Gathers, WR Andy Jones, LB Deon King, WR Vince Mayle, DE Ryan Russell, TE Austin Traylor. There's a good chance that QB Jameill Showers will make the practice squad once he clears waivers, so for now he's awarded honorary practice squad status.

Your pet cat either made it or didn't make it and it is now time for The Great Pet Cat Reckoinng.

We'll start off with a look at which pet cats the BTB writers picked this year, and how that worked out for the pet cats involved:

Writer 2016
Dawn Macelli
Andy Jones (UDFA) Practice Squad
OCC Jake Brendel (UDFA) Practice Squad
Joey Ickes Rodney Coe (UDFA) cut
DannyPhantom Antony Brown (6th Rd) 53-man roster
Tom Ryle
Darius Jackson (6th Rd) 53-man roster
Dave Halprin Rico Gathers (6th Rd) Practice Squad
Michael Sisemore
Dak Prescott (4th Rd) 53-man roster
Jim Scott
Charles Tapper (4th Rd) 53-man roster

When we published our pet cats in mid May, many BTB readers submitted their pet cats in the comments thread. A quick scan of the comments shows the following players as pet cat favorites among the BTB commenters at that time (excluding a few stray votes for veteran players or high draft picks):

Votes Players
19 Darius Jackson
13 Ed Eagan
10 Rico Gathers
9 Charles Tapper, Kavon Frazier
7 Andy Jones, Rodney Coe
6 Dak Prescott
5 Anthony Brown, Jason Neill
4 Jake Brendel, Caleb Azubike, Chris Brown, Terrance Mitchell
3 Deon King, Jeremiah McKinnon
2 Maliek Collins, Arjen Colquhoun, Mike McAdoo, Boston Stiverson
1 Vince Mayle, Derek Akunne, David Hedelin, Rolan Milligan, Matt Wile

I tallied a total of 130 votes for 28 different players. Some of them left the Cowboys early, some didn't make the roster over the weekend, some wouldn't strictly qualify as pets cats anyway, and some ended up making the team.

Tell us about your pet cat. Who did you pick at the time?

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