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[UPDATE]: Andrew Whitworth clarifies nobody from the Dallas Cowboys reached out to him

A veteran tackle said that the Cowboys have contacted him.

NFL: Super Bowl LVI-Los Angeles Rams Championship Parade Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

We are about two weeks away from the regular season beginning for the Dallas Cowboys and right now it is hard to see how the team is prepared for it given this week’s injury to left tackle Tyron Smith.

The all-everything Smith suffered an avulsion fracture that is believed to keep him out until at least December. He is one of the best players on the Cowboys so the team being without him for any stretch of time is troublesome, let alone a majority of the season.

There are a number of ways in which the Cowboys can choose to go about replacing Smith, and the most sensible seems to be adding a veteran option whether by way of free agency or the draft. We have discussed a list of names that are options in the past, but one has usually been left off since he retired this past offseason.

We are referring to Andrew Whitworth who was a part of the Los Angeles Rams team that won the Super Bowl last season. Whitworth is now a part of Amazon’s Thursday Night Football broadcast and Thursday night (shocker) featured the first one of the season.

During the game Whitworth was asked if his phone has been ringing lately, and he noted that it has while specifically bringing up the Cowboys and the situation involving Smith.

Near the end of his answer he joked that his wife Melissa and their family is ultimately in charge of making the call on whether or not he will return to professional football. He may be extremely happy in retirement or interested in playing for Dallas, the fact that he noted this publicly is certainly very interesting.

There is no question that Whitworth would be among the best possible ways that the Cowboys could navigate a Tyron-less life. Maybe they can convince his family to let it all happen one more time for him.


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Update: 10:50am ET

On Friday morning Andrew Whitworth took to Twitter to denounce the idea that the Cowboys called him. He noted that Dallas reporters and journalists were the ones who reached out.

Whitworth doesn’t explicitly say in the clip that the Cowboys called him, but he certainly makes it sound like he had an interaction with the team. That is open to interpretation though and as noted he did not expressly say that the Cowboys had reached out.

One of the things that Whitworth did mention was his wife. He playfully said that she and their children were the ones who would make the call on whether he played football again. For what it’s worth she added that he did not specifically say anything about the team calling him.

Just for the record the preface to this question was about whether or not the Rams (Whitworth’s most recent team) had called him and he brought up the Cowboys on his own. Obviously the Tyron injury is massive news around the NFL, but it was for that reason that the story took off.

Speaking of the Rams they do technically still hold his rights. While Whitworth retired he did so still under contract with the team. ProFootballTalk noted that the Cowboys reaching out to him would technically be deemed as tampering.

At a minimum, Whitworth was cheekily trying to create the impression that the Cowboys have been calling him when, in reality, they haven’t been. At worst, the Cowboys were calling him — and also were committing a blatant tampering violation.

That’s the best reason for Whitworth to now claim that he wasn’t being called by anyone from the Cowboys. Because he’s on the Rams’ reserve-retired list, he’s off limits to any other team, absent express permission form the Rams. And given that the NFL smacked the Dolphins and owner Stephen Ross three weeks ago or rampant tampering with Tom Brady and then pointedly reminded all teams two weeks ago to knock off the tampering, it wouldn’t be good for the Cowboys to be caught with both hands in the Andrew Whitworth cookie jar.

Maybe Friday morning’s activity was all about quieting things in the name of avoiding a tampering charge, or maybe what Whitworth said on Thursday night was just a thing that he said.

We will see what happens as the Cowboys look to address their need at left tackle.

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