Stephen Jones admits Cowboys mistake, should’ve ‘Signed Dak the first time around’ - Todd Brock, Cowboys Wire
Hind sight is always 20/20.
There have been “euphoric” moments, like the team’s landslide 52-17 win in Super Bowl XXVII. There have been crushingly low moments, like the 1994 NFC Championship loss to San Francisco despite having what was widely considered “the best team.” There have been draft pick busts, lost-cause seasons, players who slipped away, and personnel moves that tanked.
But ask Stephen Jones about his top regret in his time as executive vice president of the Dallas Cowboys, and the 57-year-old doesn’t need long to come up with an answer.
“Probably would have signed Dak the first time around,” he said with a big laugh, “and it would have been better for everybody.”
Jones sat down for a wide-ranging interview with KXAS-TV recently, and while Jerry’s oldest son touched on the larger-than-life Cowboys greats he’s been fortunate enough to be around, like former quarterbacks Troy Aikman and Tony Romo, most of the conversation revolved around things like legacy and family.
Health on the offensive line has been an issue of late. Can 2021 be different for the big guys up front?
FRISCO, Texas – Let’s be clear: getting Dak back healthy is a big deal.
Prescott’s return to the huddle as the starting quarterback is unquestionably the biggest addition the Cowboys could have made this offseason. But to fully realize their potential on offense, the Cowboys need a healthy season from left tackle Tyron Smith and right tackle La’el Collins.
Both players are on track to be ready for the start of the season, but how will the rest of 2021 go? Our staff writers debate.
4) Can The Offensive Tackles Hold Up?
They need to put more respect on Amari Cooper’s name.
The Dallas Cowboys were struggling offensively back in 2018 and needed a spark. At 3-4, they traded a 2019 first-round pick to the Las Vegas Raiders for Amari Cooper, and their offense took off. In nine games, Cooper caught 53 passes for 725 yards and six touchdowns and the Cowboys won seven of them to finish 10-6 and win the NFC East.
In Cooper’s first full season in Dallas, he set career highs in yards (1,189), touchdowns (8), and yards per catch (15.1). When ESPN did its top 10 rankings for wide receivers before the 2020 season, Cooper landed at No. 10 on the list. However, earlier this week, he failed to make the top 10 for 2021.
A legitimate case can be made for the first eight names on this list to be ahead of Cooper. When you get to the ninth and tenth spots, that’s where the head-scratching begins.
At number nine is where DK Metcalf of the Seattle Seahawks landed. He’s immensely talented without a doubt, but he’s only been in the league for two seasons and has only reached the 1,000-yard mark once. One spot after is where A.J. Brown of the Tennessee Titans came in. Much like Metcalf, Brown has only been in the NFL for two seasons, and although he’s reached 1,000 yards in both, he hasn’t consistently shown that he should be ranked higher than Cooper on any list for wide receivers.
Fehoko looks to be another weapon on the Cowboys offense, but how can they get him involved this year?
How He Got Here: Drafted in the fifth round by the Cowboys this past April, Fehoko arrives in Dallas with a rather unique path that included a two-year church mission to South Korea out of high school, followed by a career at Stanford that only included just 16 games over three seasons. But it was the 2020 campaign – a Covid-shortened season of just six games, that bolstered Fehoko’s stock. He earned All-Pac 12 first-team honors with 37 catches for 574 yards and three scores.
What’s Next: While it might help Fehoko to be a draft pick, he’s still entering a logjam of receivers all vying for one, perhaps two, roster spots at the end of the receiver depth chart. For all the stats he’s produced in college as a receiver, deep threat and route-runner, Fehoko might have to “tackle” his way onto the roster. In other words, proving that he can play special teams could be his ticket onto the 53-man roster. But it won’t be easy, considering guys like Cedrick Wilson and Noah Brown are proven special teams players. And the Cowboys also added a handful of undrafted receivers and like Fehoko, most of them hover into the 6-3, 6-4 and 6-5 range in height. But Fehoko was a drafted priority for the Cowboys and he’ll likely get several opportunities in the preseason games to make his mark.
Bet You Didn’t Know: Maybe Fehoko just needs to get back to southern California for the start of training camp. Because that was the site of his final collegiate game, and it’ll go down as one of the best in Pac-12 history. Playing at UCLA, which is about an hour away from the Cowboys’ training camp site in Oxnard, Calif., Fehoko torched the Bruins for 16 catches for 230 yards and three touchdowns.
You never know what you’ll get with rookies.
In the history of the NFL, there have been some tremendous seasons turned in by rookies. Two examples that quickly come to mind are the season put up by Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Randy Moss in 1998 and the mind-boggling performance by Los Angeles Rams running back Eric Dickerson in 1983. Obviously, there are many more, but these are two that I remember vividly. It’s time to see if the Dallas Cowboys can put a player on the list. On April 29, 2021, at the NFL draft, Commissioner Roger Goodell spoke the following words, which all Cowboys fans hope will foreshadow greatness,
With the 12th pick in the 2021 draft, the Dallas Cowboys select Micah Parsons, linebacker, Penn State University.
If hype and talent are any indicators at all, then Parsons has a chance to catapult his career this upcoming season as a rookie. At 6’3″, 245lbs, and running a 4.39 40 yard dash, Parsons has every physical took necessary to take the league by storm. He is also a product of “Linebacker U.”
The name was given to Penn State years ago for producing some of the most impactful linebackers in league history. Here are a few of the plays at Penn State that made many teams rate him as the best defensive player in the draft.
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