Just when you thought the Cowboys had enough edge rushers, they surprise us by adding another one. On Sunday, the Cowboys traded a 2018 conditional seven-round pick for the fourth year outside linebacker (Green Bay runs a 3-4 defense), Jayrone Elliott.
After a 16 sack career at the University of Toledo, Elliott went undrafted in 2014 and signed with the Packers. Hustle Belt had this to say about him coming out of college:
Elliott may not be the biggest name out of the MAC, but he anchored the league, and one of the nation's, best pass rushes in 2013. The outside linebacker/edge rusher totaled 70 tackles in 2013 and 14 tackles-for-loss to go along with nine sacks, while earning first team All-MAC. He also forced five fumbles.
Elliott really took a leap in his senior year. Before that he was an average defensive lineman. As a junior the Cleveland native recorded six sacks and seven tackles for loss. As a freshman and sophomore, the former 3-star OLB prospect, saw limited success.
Here is what our sister site, Acme Packing Company shared when he signed with the Packers:
Position: Outside Linebacker
Weight: 255 pounds
Elliott recorded 70 tackles, including 9 sacks in his senior season with the Rockets and earned All-MAC honors. His measureables don't really jump out: 4.7 forty-yard dash, 31-inch vertical jump, 18 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press, but his production on the field does.
Elliott looks like a natural fit to be an edge rusher from the outside linebacker position. From his film against Northern Illinois, he displayed great pursuit of the ball carrier, decent hand placement and rush moves, and was a firm tackler. He had to bring down Jordan Lynch in the open field a few times in that game, and was up to the task. Obviously, Lynch isn't nearly as elusive as the talent at the NFL level, but Elliott appears to be able to stand his ground against blocks, shed the blocks, and wrap up the ball carrier on a regular basis.
Elliott made a great first impression for Green Bay, tearing it up in the preseason of his rookie season where he recorded five sacks. It was enough to earn a spot on the Packers roster. He has played 38 games for Green Bay over his three seasons in the league, but hasn’t started in any of them.
Green Bay fans were hoping for a breakout season for Elliott this season.
In the last two seasons, Elliott has played in 310 snaps, so he has averaged one sack per 77.5 snaps. That's right where Peppers was when he was with the Packers (75.1 snaps) and that is a much better average than Matthews (127.4 snaps).
Packers head coach Mike McCarthy talked about Elliott this week during the NFL annual meetings and he said Elliott has a chance to do some big things this upcoming season.
He’s been quiet so far this year as he’s been dealing with back spasms.
With two of the Cowboys defensive ends starting the season suspended, Elliott could serve as an extra body to fit into Rod Marinelli’s rotation. He’ll also come in handy on special teams as he’s been a key contributor on ST for the Packers.
Check out his body of work so far in the NFL.
Do you like this move by the Cowboys?