The start of free agency in the NFL is officially a week away as the new league year begins on Wednesday, March 16th at 4:00pm ET. When the clock strikes midnight on the offseason there will be a bevy of deals happening left and right.
Par for the course, as far as the Dallas Cowboys are concerned, has been to sit out the initial wave of free agency in favor of prioritizing deals that the franchise thinks are more cost-effective and value-based, and those typically happen in the third wave of things. Whenever Dallas does decide to get onto the dance floor this year might they reunite with someone whom they’ve done the tango with before?
Four years ago the Cowboys saw one of their linebackers leave for greener pastures as Anthony Hitchens defected to the Kansas City Chiefs. Ever since arriving with the former Dallas-based franchise, Hitchens has experienced nothing but conference championship games (his arrival was timed beautifully with the emergency of Patrick Mahomes) and was a part of the team that won Super Bowl LIV.
The Chiefs have already released Hitchens this offseason and it appears that he might want to return to the team that drafted him in the fourth round back in 2014. According to The Dallas Morning News, Hitchens “has a desire” to return to the Cowboys.
Former Cowboys LB Anthony Hitchens has a desire to return after spending 4 years in KC. Cowboys seek a LB in FA or draft. Can Hitchens and Parsons work together?— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) March 8, 2022
Last season was a notable one for the Cowboys as their defense became not just a bigger part of the show but the main attraction. Obviously a huge reason for this was the development of then-rookie Micah Parsons who starred at linebacker among other places.
What makes Parsons unique is his ability to float along the defense to places where he can make the most impact. If the Cowboys move on from DeMarcus Lawrence as some expect them to, then it will create a more dire need at pass rusher and potentially increase Parsons’ responsibility there. If that is the case, it weakens the linebacker group that Hitchens could help fortify.
Anthony Hitchens was a leader for the Chiefs throughout his tenure there and was relatively healthy. As someone who has a Super Bowl win under his belt he could serve as a leader of a different kind for a Cowboys team that needs an example set, similar to the way Mike McCarthy envisioned Gerald McCoy doing so when the Cowboys signed him in 2020, a la Charles Woodson on Mike McCarthy’s Green Bay Packers teams.
At the risk of sounding exactly like the Cowboys brain-trust, this is a deal that could work, but only if the money is right. The Cowboys are already in a difficult salary cap position and don’t need to get crazy dropping serious cash on a linebacker who will be on the wrong side of 30 when the season begins.
Would you want to see Anthony Hitchens return to the Dallas Cowboys?
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