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Cowboys News: Roger Goodell's kangaroo court vs. Ezekiel Elliott

Roger Goodell's mishandling of yet another DV case further damages NFL's credibility.

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NFL: Washington Redskins at New York Giants Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Zeke and the Salvation Army kettle, together again. ( : jonmachota/Twitter)

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Ezekiel Elliott about to become victim of NFL’s confused domestic violence agenda - Myles Stedman, RealSport
When mock trial meets football, things go bad, Stedman explains.

If the NFL’s reported plans for Ezekiel Elliott are true, which would involve a “short suspension” for a crime he was not found guilty of, then they have truly lost sight of the meaning and responsibility to their own punishments.

Perhaps it’s too late for the League. After all, they’re already frequent victims of their own stupid precedents, and, if ESPN’s Adam Schefter is correct, they’re about to play themselves for fools again.

No. There is never a wrong time to achieve justice, and the only way that will be found here is by the NFL dropping their investigation and letting an innocent man play. If they’ve found anything, hand it over to the police.

Let’s hope the League’s redundant, self-righteous, kangaroo court ends when Ezekiel Elliott’s punishment is unjustly handed down. This is an organization so scared of its horrific history of domestic violence, and the criminal potential of its partners, that it would punish a man with no conviction of his wrongdoing. That is so sad, on so many levels.

Cowboys News: NFL's “bizarre” handling of Ezekiel Elliott case under increasing scrutiny - OCC, Blogging The Boys
In yesterday's news links, we took a detailed at the reporting surrounding the Elliott case, including this take from Mike Florio of PFT, who writes that Roger Goodell's mishandling of yet another investigation further damages the NFL's credibility.

So what happens with Elliott? It’s possible that Friday’s report from Adam Schefter of ESPN was the product not of an exasperated Elliott camp accepting the inevitable but a deliberate leak from the league office aimed at gauging public opinion (along with the possible wrath of Jerry) before making a final decision. Whatever the motivation, a decision must come ASAFP if the league hopes for its internal investigation process to preserve any credibility whatsoever.

Why Alfred Morris should back up Ezekiel Elliott if he gets suspended - Danny Phantom, Blogging The Boys
Phantom makes the case for Alfred Morris.

Morris is a player that does well in a bell-cow role. He gets better as the game goes on as he finds his rhythm. His three straight 1,000 yards seasons weren’t a fluke. He didn’t suffer some game-altering injury that has effected his performance. In fact, he’s the anti-McFadden when it comes to durability. The guy is always available.

Prediction: McFadden would win my vote as the RB to spell Elliott on a series or two a game, but if the Cowboys need a 20+ carry player, Morris is the guy. The Cowboys can contract out someone else for third-down duties, but they need a workhorse like Morris to drive the running game.

Babe Laufenberg: 'Most ridiculous thing' from Dak's rookie year; - SportsDay Staff
Laufenberg recently talked Dak Prescott on 105.3-FM The Fan.

As I said last year, every hurdle that Dak faced, he just leapt over it comfortably. He hadn't beaten this team , he hadn't done this, he hadn't won on the road - can he go to Green Bay and beat Aaron Rodgers at Lambeau? He did that. He just passed every test last year. So, to me, there's just going to be a natural progression.

That being said, he's not going to have as good a statistical year. I can tell you that right now. You are not going to go through an entire season like he did last year, and finish with 23 touchdowns and four interceptions. It was the most ridiculous thing I had seen in terms of just those numbers that you post. I don't care who you are, but for a rookie? ... I still marvel at what he did last year.

Mailbag: Who Can Get Double-Digit Sacks? - Bryan Broaddus & Rob Phillips, Dallas Cowboys
A reader wonders whether the Cowboys have a double-digit sack guy on the roster, despite Rod Marinelli's philosophy of constantly rotating players.

Rob: A true rotation does limit a player’s snaps and thus the number of chances he has for sacks. But I’m fairly certain Marinelli would adjust the rotation if he found a “war daddy,” a guy that defense’s must account on each play, each game, each season. He hasn’t had that type of player since DeMarcus Ware, but Plan B is to find solid production from a large group of contributors. If the defense can cobble together six, seven sacks from six, seven guys, those results sound pretty good.

Bryan: If someone is productive that won't keep these coaches playing that guy despite a rotation. DeMarcus Lawrence comes to mind as that guy who could be a double digit guy. Maybe David Irving as well. They have guys that have the potential; it's a matter of those guys finishing.

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Cowboys' secondary revamp won't happen all at once - Todd Archer, ESPN
Archer counsels patience with the revamped 2017 secondary.

Could these rookies make that type of impact this year? That would surprise me a ton. Orlando Scandrick, Nolan Carroll and Jeff Heath will have something to say about it. Scandrick was moving better in the spring than he did a year ago. Carroll had a solid season in Philadelphia last year and had moments in the spring, too. He could face discipline from the NFL for an offseason DWI arrest, but I would expect him to start. And Heath has the inside track to start next to Jones.

There have been some comparisons between the Cowboys' youth movement and what the San Francisco 49ers did in 1981 when they drafted Ronnie Lott, Eric Wright and Carlton Williamson in the first three rounds. The Niners had a terrible pass defense in 1980 and started all three rookies in 1981 and began their march to greatness.

The Niners' success is more the outlier than the predictor of success. The Cowboys like Awuzie, Lewis, Woods and White, and they have shown a willingness to play younger players in recent years.

They won't go all-in with the rookie defensive backs in 2017, but that doesn't mean these players can't make contributions.

Five keys to the Dallas Cowboys’ Super Bowl dreams - Drew Davison, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Davison's five keys are Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, team health, the pass rush, and the emergence of second-tier players in position battles. Here's his take on team health (and suspensions).

There’s a steep drop-off from Prescott to Kellen Moore; from Elliott to Darren McFadden; from Dez Bryant to Terrance Williams. The Cowboys have elite players on the offensive side, and any significant injury could be devastating to their championship dreams. Plus, they’re already hurting on the defensive side with David Irving suspended for the first four games and Nolan Carroll (DWI) and Damien Wilson (aggravated assault) facing punishment from the league.

Having Returned Home, Bell Now Learning The Cowboys OL System - Kurt Daniels, Dallas Cowboys
Veteran free agent addition Byron Bell is looking to find a spot on the Cowboys O-line and will have to earn a new system as he competes against Jonathan Cooper and Chaz Green for the starting left guard position.

“It’s a whole new system for him,” said offensive line coach Frank Pollack. “He hasn’t really been in our scheme, so a lot of it is new to him. He’s learning the way we do our technique here.”

“Some of it’s just learning the language,” said Pollack. “I tell guys, you speak Italian; we speak French. We kind of know that we want to order a piece of pizza, we know what it looks like, but this is how we talk and order it.”

“It’s different everywhere I’ve been, but it’s unique here how they do things,” said Bell. “It’s a beautiful thing how they run the offensive line room. By just implementing the things I’ve learned throughout the years and then the things Coach Pollack and Coach [Marc] Colombo are teaching, it’s going to help my career further. I think these techniques will help me to up my game.”

“Every team is going to coach it different,” Bell said, “but power is power, zone is zone. Just go out there and run it. I’ve just got to come in and learn the techniques that Coach Pollack and Coach Colombo are teaching, and I think I’ll be fine.”

“I’m here to work,” he said, “and I’ll just let my play do the talking. They’re going to play the best five. I’ve just got to do my best to be one of those five.”

NFL business - Will disempowerment of Goodell happen by 2020?
A change in Roger Goodell's power over the NFL? Not happening any time soon, Seifert explains.

Ha! (Sorry.) Players hate the closed-loop authority commissioner Roger Goodell maintains over most aspects of discipline, as prescribed in the 2011 CBA. This "judge, jury and executioner" lament has fueled countless public dust-ups and legal disputes. Goodell ultimately has prevailed in most of them. This authority allows Goodell to address what he considers matters of NFL integrity as he sees fit, even in a union environment. Why would he give it up? Owners might convince him to take a personal step back, leaving the work to designated staff members. But that's much different than submitting discipline to neutral arbitration, as players would prefer. To negotiate it out of the next CBA, players would have to give up something significant, and all for an issue that impacts a statistical minority of them. There is no reason to expect change here in the next three years -- or ever.

Verdict: Won't happen

Eli, Ben, Rivers all poised to join the 50,000-yard club - Michael Smith, ProFootballTalk
Another example of how meaningless volume stats are. Sure, Eli, Ben, and Rivers will all likely surpass 50,000 passing yards this season, and join an elite club of six other QBs who've passed that mark. The implication here is that because the three are joining a very select club, they themselves must be some of the very best QBs to have played the game. But you know what else those three QBs have in common? In 39 combined NFL seasons, none of them made All Pro even once. Not even second-team All Pro.

Big Names in Sportswriting Are Joining The Athletic - Ryan Glasspiegel and Kyle Koster, The Big Lead
Big names in sportswriting are joining The Athletic, a subscription-based sports website group that is looking to disrupt the web content business model.

The Athletic costs $5.99 per month for a subscription, or $39.99 if you commit to a year. There are often special promotions that make it a tad cheaper. In a letter to readers this past February explaining why the site charges subscription prices, Toronto editor-in-chief James Mirtle described that the traditional CPM model for written web content was irrevocably broken:

In the (recent) past, you could attempt to make money online by going for scale – a high number of clicks – but that is becoming increasingly difficult. Even a very high-end website, like the New York Times, has online ad rates of about $8 CPM (cost per thousand impressions). Most newspapers and websites are much lower than that – and the number seems to be falling every year.

Even very well read stories for large outlets may only generate $75 or $100 in revenue online. Not enough to pay a writer for a day’s work, let alone add in an editor, or any other costs associated with a large company producing content. And those are the ones that hit relatively big. Others about more niche subjects, or that require a high level of sophistication, research and time, would generate even less revenue relative to the cost to produce them, in that click-per-penny model.

The Athletic will need to sell A LOT of subscriptions both locally and nationally to recoup the prodigious costs from not only assembling a staff of established writers, but also sending them all over the place to report on the teams or sports they cover. It is quite an ambitious undertaking, but anyone who works in this industry or is turned off by an endless series of video pivots should rooting hard for this economic disruption to succeed.

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