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Cowboys news: CeeDee Lamb looks to build on last year’s performance

Plus other Cowboys news and free agent signings from around the league.

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CeeDee Lamb looking to be a better version of himself in 2021 - Josh Alper, Pro Football Talk

Ceedee Lamb was able to step in as a rookie and produce right away, but he believes there is another level he can reach.

Lamb wore No. 2 at Oklahoma, but followed in the footsteps of previous star receivers like Dez Bryant, Michael Irvin, and Drew Pearson by donning No. 88 in Dallas. He said the new number “is definitely it for me.”

While Lamb will look the same, he wants to make a bigger impact on the field. He had 74 catches for 935 yards and five touchdowns as a rookie, but is looking to top that in his second season.

“I want to focus on me being better for the team and definitely want to be as impactful on the team as I possibly can,” Lams said, via Calvin Watkins of the Dallas Morning News. “Naturally, the team will get better. We started a whole new system if you will. We got a new defensive coordinator. Offensively, we got everybody back. It’s a whole new role. I’m looking to be a better version of myself. To be better than last year and if everyone has that mind-set as a collective group we’ll be better.”

Dallas Cowboys: Free agent signing Brent Urban to transform the defense - Reid Hanson, sportdfw.com

Brent Urban looks to come in and help turn around a struggling defensive unit.

Brent Urban may be the Dallas Cowboys most impactful free agent signing of the offseason

Urban, rated by Pro Football Focus as the 3rd best DT run-stopper in the NFL last year, will be a huge addition to the Cowboys interior. He and Woods will combine to form quite the 1-2 punch as rotational 1-technique defensive tackles and should be able to do what no one could do last year – stabilize the D-line.

Brent Urban alone isn’t the magic elixir. The biggest element to the Dallas Cowboys newfound ability to stop the run lies in the scheme itself. Under Mike Nolan the Cowboys dabbled in more middle-of-the-field-open looks and 2-gap fronts. This made the Cowboys front more reactionary and less aggressive in the gaps and had a trickle-down effect to the second level.

Dan Quinn comes to Dallas with a familiar scheme: the single high safety. Playing more single high (Quinn is not exclusive to single high) will move an extra defender into the box and feature more one-gap principles employed in those Rod Marinelli years.

Rule change could help Cowboys bring back throwback jerseys - Mitch Larson, thelandryhat.com

We soon could be seeing the Cowboys wearing throwback uniforms on Thanksgiving again.

This offseason the NFL has already made one big change by adding a 17th game onto the schedule. Another rule change is on the table as the league mulls a proposal that would loosen some of the restrictions around players’ jersey numbers.

However, one change that could be debated this offseason that would quite literally be great to see, would be the elimination of the NFL’s so-called “one helmet” rule. This change would allow the Dallas Cowboys to bring back their old fan favorite throwback jerseys, the ones they used to break out on Thanksgiving Day for the better part of a decade.

The one helmet rule has been in effect since 2013 and was designed to limit the number of helmets that a team uses in a given year. The thought behind it was that since new helmets can be dangerous before they’re properly worn in, players and teams were safer by sticking to one helmet.

While the rule doesn’t stop teams from slapping a new decal on an existing helmet, it does prevent them from using a new helmet shell. Ultimately, as many team’s throwback jerseys include helmets that are largely different from their current ones, the rule ended up preventing many teams from wearing their fan’s favorite retro uniforms.

Aldon Smith expected to sign with Seahawks - Rob Phillips, Dallascowboys.com

After one year with the Cowboys, it looks like Smith has found a new home.

FRISCO, Texas – It appears Aldon Smith will continue his comeback story in Seattle.

After playing the 2020 season with the Cowboys, Smith has agreed to a one-year deal with the Seahawks, according to NFL Media and reports. The Seahawks have not yet announced the move.

Smith became an unrestricted free agent in March. Reinstated by the NFL last spring after nearly five years out of football, he started all 16 games and ranked second on defense behind DeMarcus Lawrence in sacks (5) and quarterback pressures (33).

The Seahawks were believed to have interest in Smith at last year’s trade deadline, but he stayed on the Cowboys roster for the remainder of the season. Smith had a season-best three sacks in the Cowboys’ Week 3 loss at Seattle.

Cowboys: 3 prospects to avoid in the 2021 draft - Garrett Ballard, withthefirstpick.com

We hear all the time about what prospect the Cowboys should draft, but who are some of the players they should avoid?

1. Rashawn Slater, OT, Northwestern

Rashawn Slater is a phenomenal prospect; truly. The reason the Cowboys should not draft him is that his name isn’t Penei Sewell. Picking at 10 overall, there is a chance that Rashawn Slater is on the board, and Penei Sewell is not. With an offensive line that is basically all returning from injury, it might make sense to draft someone for the future and in case the injuries return.

The issue with that is the Cowboys would be ignoring who is returning. In 2021, the Cowboys will have La’el Collins, Tyron Smith, and Zack Martin all back from injury. The Cowboys don’t need to draft an offensive lineman in the first round, they need depth, and spending a top ten pick on depth is not a good strategy.

This changes if the player is Penei Sewell, however. If Sewell lasts until ten, it might be hard for Dallas to pass up on him. He’s the best offensive tackle in this class and is also one of the youngest. At 20 years old, he will be signing his second contract by the time he’s 24 most likely. Tyron Smith is still phenomenal, but if the ability to draft a top-three player in this class presents itself, it’d be hard to not take him.

Cowboys players had a Wednesday video conference on OTA boycott - Mike Florio, PFT

The Cowboys players held a meeting to discuss their approach to offseason activities.

One team, the Cowboys, recently had a players-only Zoom video conference to discuss the recommendation from the union that players not attend. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, it happened on Wednesday, April 14 at 5:00 p.m. CT.

To date, the Cowboys have issued no statement that they’ll join in the boycott. They still could, literally at any minute. Or maybe they won’t. Really, will any team that decides not to do so issue a statement through the union? It’s highly doubtful.

The situation invites curiosity, however. How many teams have held a similar call, but have decided not to proceed with a boycott? How many teams have actually had a vote among the players on the subject, and what was the outcome of that vote?

The NFLPA continues to recommend that players stay away. If they plan to work out somewhere in advance of training camp, there continues to be every good reason to do so in a place where they’ll have access to better equipment and facilities — and more importantly financial protection against injuries that may happen.

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