Greg the Leg will reunite with John Fassel in Dallas.
The move for Zuerlein reunites the 32-year-old with John Fassel, his special-teams coach with the Rams who was hired by Dallas in January. NFL Network was the first to report the agreement.
The Cowboys had already re-signed Kai Forbath to a one-year deal this offseason. Forbath started the final three games last season, going 10-for-10 on his attempts after the Cowboys cut Brett Maher, who missed 10 attempts in 13 games.
Zuerlein has converted 201 of 245 field goal attempts in the regular season (82%) and is 264-of- 270 on extra-point attempts since being selected by the Rams in the sixth round of the 2012 NFL draft.
Zuerlein has booted 33 field goals of 50 yards or more, which is tied with Adam Vinatieri for fourth in the NFL over that span — behind Matt Prater (41), Justin Tucker (39) and Matt Bryant (34). His reliability over his eight NFL seasons has earned him the nicknames “Greg the Leg” and “Legatron” among teammates and fans.
It’s official, Dontari Poe is a Cowboy.
FRISCO, Texas – If anyone needed a signal that the Cowboys are in a different era, it doesn’t get much clearer than this.
Continuing their efforts to revamp their defense under first-year head coach Mike McCarthy, the Cowboys have agreed to terms with veteran defensive tackle Dontari Poe after spending part of the week finalizing language in the deal.
Poe still must take a physical and sign a contract for the deal to become official, but he’s expected to big part of the Cowboys’ defensive front in 2020.
For those unfamiliar with his work, Poe isn’t just a defensive tackle. The eight-year veteran is a nose tackle in every sense of the word, tipping the scale at an impressive 6-3, 346 pounds – the type of space eater the Cowboys haven’t employed in quite some time.
McCarthy has hinted for months that he and his staff, with Mike Nolan at defensive coordinator, prefer a larger mold of defensive tackle. Even still, this is quite a departure from previous years, as former defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli preferred smaller defensive tackles who could get up the field faster.
GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS! GOOD NEWS!
Williams tore his ACL during the Cowboys’ Thanksgiving Day matchup against the Buffalo Bills and missed the rest of the 2019 season. Xavier Su’a-Filo, who just left the Cowboys for the Cincinnati Bengals, and Joe Looney filled in for Williams for the remainder of the year.
Williams a second-round pick for the Cowboys in 2018 has played in 24 games for Dallas, starting in 21, since joining the team. It appears he is on track to be ready for the start of the 2020 season.
After losing Frederick, the Cowboys only have 8 offensive linemen on the roster and will surely be looking for depth players during the rest of the offseason.
Williams also gave his thoughts on Travis Frederick. “Trav took it beyond the game,” Williams said. “He knew more than he needed to, and definitely at center, you have to be a smart guy. But I think Trav definitely surpassed that. Just the brightest guy. He knew all the plays. He knew all the defenses – what to see.
“He just could so easily call it out and so quickly, he always called out what was coming for us. And to be able to have that extra edge on the players just helps so much.”
Film room: 3 pre-draft trade targets the Cowboys should consider, including a former first-round pick at CB - John Owning, Dallas Morning news
Bring us William Jackson III.
William Jackson III, CB, Bengals
Given all the high-priced additions in free agency, the Cincinnati Bengals are the perfect team to try to entice into a trade. The position they have targeted most is cornerback, having signed Mackensie Alexander and Trae Waynes.
According to The Athletic’s Paul Dehner Jr., William Jackson III may not be with the Bengals much longer because of those additions and the fact he’s entering the final year of his contract.
If that’s the case, the Cowboys would be wise to immediately pick up the phone and gauge Cincinnati’s interest in trading the 27-year-old cornerback.
Jackson, the Bengals’ first-round pick in 2016, has dealt with some injury issues since entering the NFL. He missed his rookie season because of a torn pectoral muscle and a shoulder injury last season sent him to injured reserve in December.
Nevertheless, Jackson is an extremely talented player who makes some absurd plays in coverage.
This might be surprising to some after all the talk this offseason.
From an on-the-field sense, the idea of a Crawford-less defensive line is in fact a little shaky. We are all rooting for Randy Gregory, but he is an unknown in terms of present football skill. The next man up along the edge would be Dorance Armstrong. That’s hardly reliable.
Off of the field is where Tyrone Crawford might hold his biggest impact. It was reported late last season that the young Cowboys sorely missed his leadership and entering a season without former captains like Jason Witten, Travis Frederick, and Jeff Heath, not to mention with a new head coach in town, there is a line of thought that having Crawford at the front of the room is a good idea.
Over The Cap currently has the Cowboys with about $20M in salary cap space so it’s not like they are in sore need of the flexibility that Crawford could provide. This late into the free agency game it’s hard to see them doing something that would require that switch being flipped, but, as always, anything is possible.
Whose laughing now?
While stereotyped as a team that only makes big splashes, the Dallas Cowboys ducked under the global radar and got a steal with Ha Ha Clinton-Dix.
Swapping out the struggling Jeff Heath with Clinton-Dix is a big win regardless, but it sure doesn’t hurt that the Dallas front office did so at one year and $4 million.
Clinton-Dix clearly wants a prove-it deal in a good locale before trying to earn more money on the market next year. And that could certainly happen. He’s only 27 years old and coming off a season in which he graded at a 74.2 at Pro Football Focus, finding some stability in his career after splitting 2018 between the Green Bay Packers and Washington Redskins.
A first-round pick in 2014, Clinton-Dix settled down with the Chicago Bears last year and allowed only 26 catches on 44 targets while posting 78 tackles, missing just nine over 99 percent of the snaps.
If the Cowboys get this sort of production at such a cost, it will go down as one of the offseason’s biggest steals.
DeMarcus Lawrence or the linebackers to benefit most from the Cowboys defensive line signings?
There’s a common misconception out there about Defensive End DeMarcus Lawrence among many Dallas Cowboys fans. You know what I’m talking about. The idea that Lawrence didn’t play good football in 2019. His sack total of five on the season disappointed many fans, but the truth is that basic stat doesn’t tell the whole story. Lawrence was one of the league’s leaders according to more advanced stats such as ESPN’s Pass Rush Win Rate. He also excelled in run defense consistently.
However, there might be some truth to the fact that he didn’t shine as much as he did in 2017 and 2018. With the Cowboys’ recent additions of defensive tackles Gerald McCoy and Dontari Poe, improvement should be in order.
It’s fair to point out the Cowboys’ defensive line didn’t look as dominant last season in general, though. Despite quality play from Lawrence and Robert Quinn, issues in the trenches were a constant headache in the team’s 8-8 campaign.
This week we had one of the newest Dallas Cowboys on the BTB podcast feed. Tight end Blake Bell joined The Ocho to discuss everything that led to him joining America’s Team.
Make sure that you never miss an episode from Blogging The Boys by subscribing to the Blogging The Boys podcast feed!
Also make sure to subscribe to the official YouTube Channel from Blogging The Boys. We’ve got big plans coming there throughout the offseason and you don’t want to miss a thing!