Death, taxes, and “Muhammad Wilkerson to Dallas” talk.
Every offseason it’s the same old thing, Muhammad Wilkerson wants to leave the New York Jets (he’s reportedly expected to be released) for greener pastures, potentially the Dallas Cowboys.
Wilkerson is a defensive end in New York’s 3-4 defense, but he’d do the electric slide inside to tackle under Rod Marinelli in Dallas. There is a lot of uncertainty with the Cowboys interior defensive line, specifically in regards to David Irving.
Why David Irving is a defensive tackle is a whole conversation in itself, but the fact remains that that’s how the Cowboys have used him most recently. If he’s back in 2018, the Wilkerson talk is rendered unlikely, unless the Cowboys decide Irving should be an end. If Irving is gone, the conversation can at least be had.
There are many who want to see the Cowboys select an interior defensive lineman in the first round (something they traditionally don’t do) in Washington’s Vita Vea. Michigan’s Maurice Hurst has been the one mocked to them by many, but should they land Wilkerson in free agency, that would adjust what their needs are.
Wilkerson is a name that’s been tied to the Cowboys many times in seasons past. In fact back in 2016 the Jets reportedly called Dallas to see if a trade could be had. Obviously, no trade was had.
While some speculation remains, a lot has changed for the Cowboys defensive line as a whole since the 2016 trade deadline. DeMarcus Lawrence has emerged as a force on the outside and Maliek Collins was once an option at the 3-technique before being moved.
Muhammad Wilkerson, who will turn 29 in October, has been generally healthy across his career. He was once a dominant force on defense for the Jets, but now they are going to release him. That begs the question of why? This article suggests three reasons for his departure.
He’s consistently tardy to team meetings. He takes plays off. His stats have dipped in the past couple of years.
Would Dallas take the chance that Rod Marinelli could motivate Wilkerson to once again become a terror in the middle? Everyone knows Wilkerson has the talent to be a force, and the Cowboys could certainly use a player in the middle of their defense. But would it be worth it to consider another problem child that they hope to revive? They’ve tried it before and have had a mixed-bag of successes and failures.
Is it time that he ends up in Dallas where many have slotted him before? At the very least, the conversation will be had.
What’s your call, BTB ?