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Cowboys news: Giants safety Xavier McKinney is holding a grudge against the Cowboys

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NFL: Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Xavier McKinney: ‘I take it personal every time I play the Cowboys’ - Mark Inabenitt. AL.com

The New York Giants safety has beef with the Cowboys.

McKinney had thought the Cowboys were going to pick him at No. 17 in the 2020 NFL Draft. Instead, Dallas took Oklahoma wide receiver CeeDee Lamb, and McKinney fell to the second round, where the Giants got him with the 36th selection.

“I think everything came full circle for me,” McKinney said during an appearance on the “All Things Covered” podcast with Patrick Peterson and Bryant McFadden. “That was the team that was supposed to come get me. The team talked to me a lot, and they liked me when I was interviewing and all that stuff. … Having that pick against the Cowboys was great because going into that game, I knew what we needed to do to have a chance to even make the playoffs. I knew it was a big game going in. …

“For me, I take it personal every time I play the Cowboys for the rest of my career. That’s just how I feel about that situation.”

McKinney missed the first 10 games of the 2020 campaign because of a foot injury. But with the New York Giants needing a victory in their regular-season finale to have a chance to make the NFL playoffs, the former Alabama defensive back picked off Dallas Cowboys quarterback Andy Dalton in the end zone with 1:15 to play. McKinney’s first NFL interception sealed a 23-19 victory.

Former Cowboys WR rips Amari Cooper for ‘lack of effort’ - Mike Fisher, Cowboys Maven

Amari Cooper’s laid-back style doesn’t sit well with former NFL receiver Jimmy Smith.

But, Smith says, “I just wish there was a little more effort on Amari Cooper’s part. He is a guy who is so talented, but the lack of effort really, really gets under my skin.’’

Smith speaking recently on FanSided’s The Matt Lombardo Show podcast, is saying Amari Cooper is “lazy’’?

This much is true: Cooper is “laid-back.’’ Some in Dallas have criticized him for not being more vocal in “demanding the ball’’ - but those same critics have called other receivers who do just that “divas.’’

Maybe Smith - who failed in Dallas after a dangerous and controversial intestinal illness and surgery but went on to become wildly successful with the Jacksonville Jaguars, where he developed into a five-time Pro Bowler while forging a 13-year NFL career - should be viewed as someone who knows what he sees. And what he sees is Cooper “not trying hard enough.’’

Or maybe, as it often is with players from previous generations (Smith is 52, Cooper 27) it’s about the money. Indeed, Smith says that Cooper should do more, “Especially for what he’s getting paid,’’ and adds of second-year receiver CeeDee Lamb, “He’s going to make guys who are making more money than him expendable. That’s what’s going to happen.”

Five NFL bets you need to make right now, from Cowboys over to Bears under - Sam Panayotovich, Fox Sports

Get your bets in for the Dallas Cowboys…

How ‘bout that Dak Prescott contract?! Shouldn’t the highest-paid player in the NFL be able to lead his team to 10 wins? … Bueller?

America’s team made a handsome commitment to Prescott, and it made sense. Jerry Jones wanted no part of Andy Dalton – there he is again – or Ben DiNucci playing quarterback ever again.

Moreover, Prescott’s ability to sustain long drives improves a Dallas defense that certainly has some questions. It felt like all the Cowboys did down the stretch was go three-and-out or six-and-out, and the D was huffing and puffing all over the field. It’ll be easier this year, when they’re playing with leads more often.

I like Dallas to win the division, but I’m hesitant to get any more invested until I see if the Cowboys’ defense can get off the field. They’ll be notably better with rookies Micah Parsons and Kelvin Joseph in the fold.

If Michael Gallup is in the long-term plans, Cowboys can’t wait to extend him - John Williams, Inside The Star

A contract extension for Michael Gallup and the Cowboys could be now or never.

If the Cowboys don’t do a contract with Gallup this Summer, the likelihood becomes that he walks in the free-agent market of 2022. With a healthy Dak Prescott and another season of training in the offseason, Gallup is on the verge of a career year, just in time for free agency.

Even as the third option in the Cowboys’ passing attack, he’s going to have a great shot at surpassing 1,200 yards receiving in 2021 with the 17th game. In addition to the additional game, Gallup will get plenty of opportunities in Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore’s vertical-based passing attack.

The year that Gallup and the passing offense is about to have would likely price him out of the Cowboys market if he were to head toward free agency. That’s why they should pursue something a little more team-friendly now. Much like they did with La’el Collins a couple of seasons ago, getting in the room with Gallup and his representation to agree to a deal that both sides would be happy now makes sense if the two parties want to keep the relationship alive in Dallas.

Dan Quinn gushes over Micah Parsons pass-rush acumen - Matthew Lenix, Cowboys Wire

Micah Parson sounds like he could be a versatile defender in 2021.

“The pass-rushing part of him, he has really picked up where he left off,” Quinn said of Parsons’ play now and the last time he was on the field in 2019, via ESPN. “He really had good speed off the edge. That part of the game is intact. Now we are working on behind the ball things: Man to man, playing zone, blitzing from off the ball. Those are things we can feature and assess.”

Quinn wasted no time using Parsons in the DPR role (designated pass rusher) during minicamp as the former Nittany Lion was seen coming off the edge at the first practice. He’s still in the learning process of perfecting that on the professional level, but Parsons is eager to be a difference-maker when called upon.

“Just creating havoc, creating disruption,” Parsons said. “Being able to create that excitement, momentum change, a chance to get the ball out and get it back to our explosive offense. That’s kind of what I like about pass rushing.”

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