Update: 4:30pm ET
We have updated this story to reflect news of Za’Darius Smith’s signing. The original story can be read after the break.
Za’Darius Smith is signing with the Baltimore Ravens, not the Dallas Cowboys.
Former Packers’ pass rusher Za'Darius Smith is signing a four-year, $35 million deal that has a max value of $50 million with the Baltimore Ravens, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 16, 2022
The Dallas Cowboys seem to be losing steam in the Von Miller sweepstakes. Anything can happen, but you might want to hold off on ordering any sort of jersey with his name on it.
There is still a need at edge rusher in the aftermath of Randy Gregory leaving the Cowboys at the last second in favor of the Denver Broncos. This year’s draft is deep at edge rusher, but it never hurts to have options, especially in an NFL where depth is often tested. Just look at this past year’s group of Cowboys defensive ends as an example.
If we are to assume that Von Miller is, in fact, off of the table, then who is left? Chandler Jones is headed to the Las Vegas Raiders so that means there are fewer options, but they exist.
The Dallas Cowboys are interested in veteran Za’Darius Smith and re-signing Dorance Armstrong
With no disrespect intended towards Dorance Armstrong the bigger news here is obviously Za’Darius Smith. While it is notable that the Cowboys have interest in one of the “bigger names” on the market, there is also a reason for it.
Cowboys doing due diligence on plenty of players but there is legit interest in LB Za'Darius Smith, a source said. Had back issues and it's something that will be looked at. @dmn_cowboys— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) March 16, 2022
The Green Bay Packers finally got off of the couch relative to free agency in their first year without Mike McCarthy (2019) and among the players they signed that offseason was Za’Darius Smith. He made them look like geniuses by turning in 13.5 and 12.5 sacks in his first two seasons with the team, respectively, but he only played the season opener before undergoing back surgery related to an injury that he suffered in training camp. For what it’s worth he did return for their playoff matchup as well. Putting it bluntly, he is available at a bit of a discount in the way that past Cowboys signings sort of have been.
While that is the case, there is no denying that Smith could be a legitimate force along the Cowboys defensive line if he is brought onto the team, especially opposite of DeMarcus Lawrence. You need a platoon of pass rushers, though, and the Cowboys seemingly have multiple plans as they are also interested in re-signing Dorance Armstrong.
Cowboys still have interest in re-signing DE Dorance Armstrong. Retaining their own talent has been big priority this offseason, as everyone knows.— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) March 16, 2022
Jerry Jones has always spoken glowingly of Armstrong whenever he has discussed him publicly. Bringing him back would also be a vintage Cowboys move in the theme of keeping a guy who they like around. He is a fine player, but trusting him as the primary rusher along the right side for an entire regular season might be too big of an ask.