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Cowboys news: Keanu Neal signing free agent contract with the Buccaneers

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NFL: Las Vegas Raiders at Dallas Cowboys Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Keanu Neal set to sign with Bucs - Josh Alper, PFT

Keanu Neal will try his conversion back to safety with Tampa Bay.

The Buccaneers are set to add another veteran player on defense.

The agents for Keanu Neal announced that their client agreed to a deal with Tampa. No terms of the deal were disclosed.

Neal played safety for five seasons in Atlanta after joining the team as a 2016 first-round pick, but moved to linebacker in Dallas last season. He had 72 tackles and a sack in 14 appearances for the Cowboys and has 410 tackles, two interceptions, two sacks, and four fumble recoveries for his career.

The Bucs signed safety Logan Ryan to go with Antoine Winfield Jr. earlier this offseason and have linebackers Lavonte David and Devin White back, so Neal’s exact fit on the defense will likely be determined in the coming months.

5 Second-Year Players To Watch For The Cowboys - Rob Phillips, DallasCowboys.com

Cowboys players looking to make that ‘second-year leap’.

Jabril Cox

Cox, a fourth-round pick last year, only played seven games and nine total defensive snaps before tearing the ACL in his right knee on Halloween night against the Vikings. His injury rehab is going well, and it sounds like the Cowboys have larger plans for him in 2022.

“Should be a big plus for us this year. Will fill right in where Keanu (Neal) left off,” Cowboys chief operating officer Stephen Jones told reporters last month. “A good offseason will be good for him. Really like his upside.”

Neal, a converted safety who played about 50% of the linebacker snaps last year, is an unrestricted free agent. There’s opportunity for Cox to replace his production. The Cowboys like his coverage skills and range, and one of his nine defensive snaps last year was a terrific goal-line play that stopped Giants quarterback Daniel Jones’ scramble to the end zone.

Dallas Cowboys 2022 7-Round Mock Draft: Dallas trades back and surprises - Reid Hanson, Sport DFW

This name has shown up a few times recently in Cowboys mocks.

With the 24th pick in the 2022 NFL Draft the Dallas Cowboys TRADE their first round pick to Detroit for Picks 32 and 66…

Dallas Cowboys Pick 32: Bernhard Raimann, OT/OG

Central Michigan

PFF Ranking: 13, Brugler Ranking: 29, TDN ranking: 67

Berhard Raimann doesn’t rate very high on many Dallas Cowboys fans’ wish lists so this is immediately going to ruffle feathers. But the front office’s interest in the Austrian born tackle is real and cannot be disregarded (he’s a 30-visit).

The former TE turned OT has gone through a tremendous transformation and thrived every step of the way. He appears to have only scratched the surface on his potential and should be a top-end talent in the NFL in no time.

The Dallas Cowboys have indicated they want to address the offensive line early in the draft and with the absence of a viable left guard on the roster, it’s the interior offensive line most think will be targeted. But as we explained yesterday in “Why offensive tackle may be the Dallas Cowboys true target in the Draft,” drafting a tackle who can temporarily play guard could be the highest value approach the Cowboys can make.

NFC Roster Reset: Biggest signings/losses, burning question for each team ahead of the 2022 NFL Draft - Kevin Patra, NFL.com

A look at roster moves and the big question going forward.

Biggest additions/signings: Michael Gallup, WR; DeMarcus Lawrence, DE; Dalton Schultz, TE

Biggest losses: Amari Cooper, WR; Randy Gregory, LB; La’el Collins, OT

2022 draft picks: 9

BURNING QUESTION: What’s the plan on the offensive line?

Much of the offseason in Dallas has focused on the receiver shuffle, but the bigger question in my book is the offensive line. The group struggled with consistency last season and has yet to receive significant upgrades. Right tackle La’el Collins was cut, and Connor Williams signed in Miami. Williams wasn’t going to be retained after his struggles, but the Cowboys now have a glaring hole. For years, Dallas boasted a talented O-line that allowed Dak Prescott to operate unscathed. Now attrition and age have set in, and it’s a unit on the verge of teetering. I’ll be stunned if the Cowboys don’t use at least one of their first two picks in the draft to fill a hole and/or add depth up front.

How 1989 Draft Shaped The Cowboys’ Dynasty - Jeff Sullivan, DallasCowboys.com

A trip down memory lane.

For three decades, the Dallas Cowboys dynasty of the 1990s has been attributed for the most part to the Herschel Walker trade, a.k.a. “The Great Trade Robbery,” and the subsequent draft picks that came along with it. That’s partly accurate, too. No one is disputing that Emmitt Smith, Russell Maryland, Kevin Smith and Darren Woodson, all selected with picks from the deal, didn’t help win three Super Bowls.

However, somewhat lost to history is the 1989 NFL Draft, the one before the most memorable and lopsided trade since the Louisiana Purchase.

This was the first under Jimmy Johnson, less than two months after Jerry Jones purchased the team. The upheaval for the Cowboys and the NFL during the seven weeks between the sale in February and the draft that April is simply mind boggling. Jones buys the Cowboys, fires Tom Landry, hires Johnson, Pete Rozelle announces he will soon step down as league commissioner after 29-plus years, Ring of Honor and Hall of Famer Randy White retires after 14 seasons with Dallas, and Cowboys President Tex Schramm, either the first or second most powerful man in professional football for 30 years, resigns.

Whew. Quick breather.

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