DeMarcus Lawrence reports to camp.
Defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence, the highest-paid defensive player in Dallas Cowboys franchise history and arguably the team’s most important player on that side of the ball, reported with other veterans to the official start of training camp, a source said.
That became the expectation over the past few days after Lawrence expressed last week some hesitation due to the uncertainty of the testing and the dangers the coronavirus presents to his pregnant wife.
Cowboys veterans reported to The Star for the first of three COVID-19 tests. They are required to pass all three before being permitted inside the facility.
Report: Dallas Cowboys rookie WR Stephen Guidry intends to opt out of the 2020 NFL season - RJ Ochoa, Blogging the Boys
With Tank opting-in, a rookie opts-out.
Rookie wide receiver Stephen Guidry is opting out of the 2020 NFL season
The Dallas Cowboys have what is arguably the best wide receiver group in the National Football League, and while it is no doubt extremely talented, the end of the depth chart does feature some room for challengers.
Part of the reason that Dallas has a great group of receivers is one of their rookies is CeeDee Lamb. While the Cowboys took Lamb in the first round, they obviously added more rookies by way of other picks and as undrafted free agents, and one of those UDFAs is wide receiver Stephen Guidry out of Mississippi State. He is opting out of the 2020 NFL season.
A primer on the opt-out situation.
David Helman: This is going to bear some close monitoring over the next week or so. Players have until Aug. 3 to opt out of this season, and we’ve already seen that many will be doing just that. There are two types of opt-out – the high risk and the general. Players who qualify for the “high risk” category have been diagnosed with a condition from the CDC’s risk factors list – think heart conditions, cancer and the like. They get a $350,000 stipend from the league, and they get credit for an accrued season – but their salary tolls over to next season. Meanwhile, a general opt-out gets $150,000 and they don’t get credit for an accrued season. Let’s simplify this by applying it to the Cowboys. Veteran cornerback Maurice Canady took a voluntary opt-out earlier this week. The front office will pay him $150,000 out of the value of his own $1.2 million contract, which he signed in March. That one-year deal will also roll over into next season, so he is now set to become a free agent in 2022, rather than 2021. And if he does make the team next season, his deal will be $150,000 smaller due to his current stipend. In the case of an undrafted opt-out, such as wide receiver Stephen Guidry, there is no stipend and the team retains his rights into next year. What will be interesting is to see if any bigger players, with bigger contracts opt to sit out the season. We’ve already seen it happen in places like Minnesota and New England.
Nick Eatman: While Dave broke it down rather nicely there, the one thing I’ll be looking at here in the next few days, is how many other roster long shots such as Guidry will opt to do the same. It’s not really beating the system, it’s just giving yourself the best chance to make the team. Guidry is a wide receiver trying to make the team that already has Cooper, Gallup and CeeDee Lamb. It’s not exactly an easy group to join, especially if you don’t have preseason games to show off your skills. So for a guy like that, it just makes sense for him to get a fresh start next year. Remember, he won’t have any contact with the team in 2020. He won’t be in meetings, watching film and won’t be around the facility. When the 2020 season is finished, he will re-join the team with three years on his contract. Now, when I see this might be a better situation for Guidry, it’s without knowing where he stands on the entire COVID situation. He might have concerns and/or a perspective that I don’t know. I’m just saying it makes sense for guys that have a hard time making the roster, to go this route. We might see more of that in the next week.
Cowboys WR Jon’Vea Johnson ‘feeling good’ after landing on NFL’s Reserve/COVID-19 list - Calvin Watkins, DMN
An update on the Cowboys wide receiver who tested positive.
Fletcher Smith, the agent for Cowboys wide receiver Jon’Vea Johnson, said Monday his client is “feeling good” after he was placed on the NFL’s Reserve/COVID-19 list last week.
Smith said Johnson isn’t sure how he contracted the coronavirus, but a player is placed on the list if he tests positive or comes in contact with someone later discovered to test positive.
Cowboys’ veterans are required to report to The Star on Tuesday for their first round of COVID-19 testing. Smith said he’s not sure if Johnson will get tested Tuesday considering he’s already tested positive and is in quarantine.
“We’re just trying to figure it out,” Smith said. “This is fairly new for me. We have more questions than answers.”
According to the NFL, players must have three negative COVID-19 tests over a four-day period. Once that occurs, players would be tested on the fifth day and then be allowed into a team’s facility.
Cowboys begin cutting from 90 to 80 ahead of camp.
The Dallas Cowboys, like all 32 NFL franchises, have a new roster cutdown date added to their offseason calendar. After the last several seasons have had teams moving from the 90-man offseason roster to the 53-man regular season version following the final preseason game, Covid-19 has changed this as well as many other aspects of the roster composition.
Now, teams will need to be down to 80 players ahead of the start of training camp practices on August 17. The Cowboys have had 89 players on their roster for the last few months, and as discussed in our roster and practice squad projections, will need to release nine men to get down to the limit. On Tuesday they began the trimming by releasing two players who we identified would likely be in the first wave. RB Jordan Chunn and DT Garrett Marino have been let go, per Clarence Hill Jr of the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram
With a new coaching staff, and plenty of young additions, Cowboys training camp will need to be productive.
Among NFL teams, the Cowboys have had one of the more unfortunate breaks during the pandemic. When the NFL nixed the entire offseason program, save for video conferencing, it took away McCarthy’s opportunity to work on the new offensive and defensive installations.
While the scrapping of the preseason appears to be a complementary disadvantage, the loss of the exhibition schedule impacts rookies and down-roster players more so than it does McCarthy’s preparations.
With the preseason slate eliminated, the coaching staff can focus on developing cohesion with their roster that hasn’t played together enough. Sure — quarterback Dak Prescott has chemistry with receiver Amari Cooper. However, how does rookie wideout CeeDee Lamb fit into the Cowboys’ new offense?
It’s another season where Jason Witten isn’t the Cowboys’ starting tight end, but Dallas platooned at the position with Dalton Schultz, Geoff Swaim, and Blake Jarwin in 2018, not simply turned the keys over to Jarwin as they are likely to do in 2020.
So you’re telling me there’s a chance?
I’m completely flabbergasted the Seahawks would give up so much draft capital and not have some kind of long-term extension worked out with Jamal Adams prior to completing this trade. Now they only control his rights through the 2021 season. He will become a free agent after that and as such is free to sign with any team of his choosing.
Enter the Dallas Cowboys.
Jamal Adams hasn’t been shy about naming the Dallas Cowboys as his preferred team to play for. He did just about everything within his power to force the Jets to trade him with the hope the Cowboys would somehow be able to swoop in to save him from the purgatory that is New York. Sadly, that’s not the way things worked out.
Adams’ and the Dallas Cowboys dream of uniting isn’t quite dead just yet though. It might be prolonged for a few more seasons, but there’s still a very real possibility this is one of those scenarios where the dream actually becomes a reality.
We have been building a 53-man roster all week on the BTB podcast network. Check out the latest episode of The 75O as 2-Time Super Bowl Champion Tony Casillas helps us put together the defensive line.
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