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Cowboys news: WR Allen Hurns visiting Dallas, Cowboys fill the hole at fullback

Your Wednesday morning summary of the latest Cowboys news.

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers at Jacksonville Jaguars Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Source: Former Jaguars WR Allen Hurns set to visit Cowboys - Brandon George, SportsDay

Will the Cowboys make a move in free agency? Josina Anderson reported on Tuesday evening that former Jaguars WR will be visiting the Big D on Wednesday.

According to a source, Hurns will be in Dallas on Wednesday to meet with the Cowboys. He is also scheduled to meet with the New York Jets.

Hurns’ visit is just the latest in the Cowboys’ search for help at the wide receiver position. According to SportsDay’s Cowboys insider David Moore, former Charger Dontrelle Inman and former Titan Justin Hunter were both set to visit The Star as well, with Moore saying there was a decent chance that both could sign with the team.

Hurns’ visit gives them another option.

Will Allen Hurns interest Dallas given their pursuit of wide receivers this offseason? - Ryan Ratty, BTB

Earlier in the day, before the news of Hurns’ visit broke, our own Ryan Ratty pondered the idea of the Cowboys being interested in the ex-Jaguar receiver.

However, there are many qualities about Hurns that could interest the Cowboys. When he is on the field, he’s been a quality receiver. If he can stay healthy, he will be able to help a team upgrade their receiving corps. He is a guy who has caught nearly 200 passes and 21 touchdowns in his four-year career.

There is also his blocking ability. Similar to Jacksonville’s offense, the Cowboys’ focal point of their scheme is to run the ball with consistency to sustain drives. Hurns is an established run-blocker. Receivers who can block are valued in these types of offenses. It is one of the reasons why Williams is still trotting out there on a consistent, every-down basis.

With holes to fill across the board on the roster, signing Hurns would all but eliminate the Cowboys from using a Day 1 or Day 2 prospect at the receiver position. Again, he is not a superstar by any means, but he is the type of guy who would be a nice addition to an offense that wreaked of staleness and ‘vanilla’ in 2017. Of course, it’s all about the money in the end.

Cowboys acquire FB Jamize Olawale from Raiders - Todd Archer, ESPN

The Cowboys haven’t been active in free agency, but they did make a trade with Oakland for fullback Jamize Olawale on Tuesday morning. The move comes after Keith Smith inked with the Raiders last week.

The Cowboys sent their fifth-round pick (No. 173 overall) to the Raiders, while Oakland shipped its sixth-round selection (No. 192) to Dallas.

It is a reunion of sorts between the Cowboys and Olawale. After finishing his college career at North Texas, he joined the Cowboys as an undrafted free agent in 2012 and spent a good portion of the season on the practice squad.

For his career, Olawale has 55 carries for 206 yards and four touchdowns with 39 receptions for 425 yards and three touchdowns.

The Cowboys did not tender Smith as a restricted free agent at a price tag of $1.9 million, making him free to sign elsewhere. Olawale is in the final year of his deal and is set to make $1.54 million. He also has a $250,000 incentive if he makes the Pro Bowl.

Dallas Cowboys upgrade roster with Jamize Olawale trade - Steven Mullenax, The Landry Hat

Is Olawale an upgrade over Keith Smith? Mullenax believes so.

And Dallas needed one as the Raiders signed their lone fullback, Keith Smith, to a two-year, $4.2 million contract just last week. That signing is what made Olawale available for this trade. And it’s an upgrade for the Cowboys.

Smith was a converted linebacker who was a powerful run blocker as well as a key special teams player. Olawale was a former wide receiver who also played running back. He’s not only a capable run blocker and special teams player, but Olawale is also an outstanding receiver out of the backfield and a top-rated pass protector.

Cowboys lose another one as guard Jonathan Cooper signs with San Francisco 49ers - Clarence Hill, The Star-Telegram

After starting at left guard for the Cowboys in 2017, Jonathan Cooper is off to the west coast.

The Dallas Cowboys officially have an opening at left guard after 2017 starter Jonathan Cooper signed a free agent contract with the San Francisco 49ers.

The 49ers announced the one-year deal via Twitter Tuesday afternoon.

The Cowboys were already looking to upgrade the position, but now they have no choice with Cooper, who started 14 games in 2017, leaving in free agency and no other options on the roster.

A Fleming and/or Waddle’s addition could hasten Collins’ move back to guard. Both split time at tackle last year with the New England Patriots. The Cowboys also need a quality swing tackle to back up left tackle Tyron Smith and whoever plays right tackle if it is not Collins.

Cowboys could find ‘keeping their own’ even more problematic in 2019 - Todd Archer, ESPN

While the Cowboys haven’t been very active in free agency this year, Archer writes that next year could be an even bigger problem for America’s Team.

But if the Cowboys’ plan is to “keep their own,” then they could face a difficult task in 2019.

They could have as many as 12 players set to hit unrestricted free agency, including three massive pieces to their success: Pro Bowl defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence, Pro Bowl right guard Zack Martin and defensive lineman David Irving.

If Lawrence has another Pro Bowl-type season, his price jumps up to likely $20 million per year. If Martin waits, then his number only goes up as well, however, he has said he does not want to play anywhere else.

There is only one franchise tag to go around. Getting a long-term deal done for Lawrence might be more difficult than Martin, but if the Cowboys want to follow through on their “keep their own” plan they need to get something done.

Compensatory picks only matter so much.

Report: Cowboys like NaVorro Bowman, but prioritizing OL help - Sam Quinn, Cowboys 247

The Cowboys need help at LB. Could NaVorro Bowman end up in Dallas and reunite with Sean Lee?

NaVorro Bowman is one of the biggest names left on the free agent market this offseason, but he hasn’t drawn the sort of offers one would expect for a player of his caliber. The three-time Pro Bowler and four-time All Pro has an offer on the table from his former team, the Oakland Raiders according to Dave Halprin of Blogging the Boys, but the fact that he hasn’t taken it yet indicates that he isn’t satisfied with what the Raiders are willing to give him. That could open the door for other teams to steal the veteran linebacker, especially in the wake of Jon Gruden re-shaping the Raiders roster so drastically this offseason.

Could the Dallas Cowboys be that team? They have a hole at linebacker in the wake of Anthony Hitchens signing with the Kansas City Chiefs. Mike Fisher of 105.3 The Fan reports that the Cowboys do like Bowman, but he isn’t their top priority at the moment. They are focused on shoring up the offensive line with a new right tackle. So far, they have hosted two former New England Patriots to that end: Cameron Fleming and LaAdrian Waddle. The idea would be to move La’El Collins back to left guard where he is most comfortable, stabilizing a line that struggled mightily without Tyron Smith for stretches last season.

Bowman would serve two primary purposes for the Cowboys if he were to join the team. He is an excellent run-defender even as he prepares to enter his 30’s. The Cowboys could slot him in at middle linebacker and let Sean Lee focus more on pass-coverage duties. Jaylon Smith would have more room to grow in that scenario as well, as Lee and Bowman would provide so much security at the other two spots in the linebacking corps.

Why Tyrann Mathieu wouldn’t have fit with Cowboys, and what Taco Charlton’s trade value is now - Dane Brugler, SportsDay

While many fans wanted the Cowboys to make a move for Tyrann Mathieu, would the former LSU Tigers superstar have fit in Dallas? Dane Brugler isn’t so sure.

Were you surprised that the Cowboys couldn’t even get the Honey Badger in town considering the small amount he signed up for in Houston?

Dane Brugler: I am surprised Tyrann Mathieu didn’t take more visits and try and drive up the price. But the fit in Houston seems to be what he was looking for. He is finally healthy and wanted to sign a one-year “prove it” deal so he can cash in next offseason as one of the top free agents available. I didn’t think he was the best fit in Dallas because he’s basically a nickel player so it wasn’t too surprising that he didn’t have any serious discussions with the Cowboys.

Xavier Woods, the Real Reason Cowboys Didn’t Pursue Tyrann Mathieu? - Brian Martin, Inside The Star

But is the development and promise of Xavier Woods the real reason why Dallas didn’t go after Mathieu? That’s an interesting thought.

It may sound crazy, but I think the real reason the Dallas Cowboys didn’t show much interest in Tyrann Mathieu is because of Xavier Woods.

I honestly believe Xavier Woods and Tyrann Mathieu have a similar skill set. Both players are little undersized to be a full-time safety in the NFL, but each of them have the versatility to play several different roles in the secondary.

As a rookie, Xavier Woods showed his versatility with the Dallas Cowboys by playing a variety of different roles in the secondary. His versatility was one of the reasons the Cowboys decided to trade up in last year’s draft to acquire his services.

His name might not carry the same kind of weight as Tyrann Mathieu right now around the league or amongst NFL fans, but I don’t think Xavier Woods is that much of a drop off talent wise.

Top players the Cowboys might directly replace in the NFL Draft - Patrik Walker, Cowboys247

With Anthony Hitchens, Keith Smith, and Jonathan Cooper leaving town, Walker gives some names that the Cowboys could target to replace the players departing.

Other needs must be accounted for as well, so Hitchens finds himself the odd man out, so it’s time to look at grabbing an impact linebacker in this year’s draft.

Keep your eyes on the consensus top dawg (pun) in Roquan Smith (Georgia) in Indianapolis, who should put on a show. Considering Smith is likely to go top 10 in April, barring the quarterback-heavy draft pushing him downward, the Cowboys will also be sure to look closely at both Tremaine Edmunds (Virginia Tech), Rashaan Evans (Alabama) or a sleeper like Micah Kiser (Virginia), to name a few.

And if they’re watching them, so should you be.

NFL draft analyst: Cowboys should ‘at least look at the trade options’ with No. 19 pick - Dane Brugler, SportsDay

Could the Cowboys trade back come draft day? Brugler says they should at least weigh their options.

“I look at my board and I’m looking at corner. There’s a good bet there’s a corner you’re going to like that’s going to be there. Guard. Our boards in that 15-25 range are probably pretty similar, and that leads me to believe they should at least look at the trade options, either up or down. If you have a chance to go up and get a Roquan Smith, a Derwin James then you go and do that. We know that free agency is going to shape what you do in the draft, and to this point it’s been all quiet on the Cowboys front. But we’re going to have to see in the next few days what happens. To my knowledge, they haven’t been talking to any guards. Are they looking for a stop gap option?

“Are they really heavily considering an Isaiah Wynn or a Will Hernandez at 19? I don’t think that’s a bad pick because those are good players. But I don’t think you’re allocating your resources to the fullest extent if you’re going to take another first-round offensive lineman. It’s not a bad pick, I’m just not sure I agree with that.”

The Ringer’s 2018 NFL Mock Draft, Version 2.0 - Danny Kelly, The Ringer

But if a talent like Marcus Davenport is still on the board, perhaps the Cowboys roll with picking at 19.

19. Dallas Cowboys: DE Marcus Davenport, UTSA

Dallas still needs to add teeth to its defensive line, and Davenport, while raw, could do exactly that. Put him in a pass-rushing subpackage with Demarcus Lawrence, David Irving, and Taco Charlton, and the highly athletic pass rusher could make an impact in year one.

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