The Cowboys led the NFL with nine All-Pro selections.
The Associated Press released its NFL All-Pro teams on Friday morning, and nine players from the Dallas Cowboys landed on the two teams with CeeDee Lamb, DaRon Bland, Zack Martin and Brandon Aubrey earning first-team honors and Dak Prescott, Tyron Smith, Tyler Smith, Micah Parsons and Bryan Anger earning second-team nods.
Lamb earns his first AP All-Pro first-team honor after a career season that saw him haul in a league-leading 135 receptions for 1,749 yards and 12 touchdowns. His receptions and receiving yards totals set franchise records, breaking marks set by Michael Irvin back in 1995. Lamb was a second-team All-Pro in 2022, but jumped up to the first-team in 2023.
Bland earns his first AP All-Pro first-team honor after leading the NFL with nine interceptions including setting an NFL record with five interception returns for touchdowns. After a season-ending ACL injury to Trevon Diggs in week three, Bland stepped in and provided elite coverage as a boundary corner as he pairs his Pro Bowl nomination with his first career All-Pro honor.
Report: Cowboys VP of Player Personnel Will McClay to stay despite interest from other teams - RJ Ochoa, Blogging The Boys
McClay is too essential to the success of the Cowboys to let him go elsewhere.
This has been quite the week for the Dallas Cowboys.
With staff changes happening all across the NFL they have seen two of the most important members of their staff garner interest from other teams. Defensive coordinator Dan Quinn has been requested to interview for various head coaching positions, and while he has not technically been requested to interview for this one specifically, it feels inevitable that he will wind up taking that position with the Seattle Seahawks.
On top of Quinn, the Cowboys have seen Will McClay field requests from other teams to interview for general manager and/or head of football operations positions. Defining McClay’s role with the Cowboys can be tricky, he is technically the Vice President of Player Personnel but he is effectively the General Manager. But these are Jerry Jones’ Cowboys after all.
Whatever and however you want to slice this pie (shout out to another staffer in Stephen Jones), McClay’s portion is not going anywhere. It was reported on Friday by ESPN’s Todd Archer that McClay will not interview with any teams and that he is staying put.
Cowboys’ Micah Parsons extra-motivated for playoffs: ‘I’m going to be phenomenal’ - Todd Brock, Cowboys Wire
Parsons is ready to wreak havoc in the postseason.
Parsons and Quinn came to Dallas within months of each other in 2021, with the first-round draft pick speaking of Quinn as almost a father figure more than a coach. So there’s extra urgency for Parsons to make this Cowboys postseason trip count, in case Quinn leaves.
“He means a lot to me because it’s not just about football,” Parsons said. “It could possibly be my last ride with Q. And if it is, we’re going to make sure it’s a damn good one.”
And now there’s the All-Pro Team. Friday saw the Associated Press release its list of 2023 honorees, and Parsons has missed making the first team for the first time in his short career. Garrett and T.J. Watt took those first-team edge rusher spots this year; Parsons and Crosby were relegated to the second team.
For the ultra-competitive Parsons, that likely won’t sit well. We’re talking about a guy who takes it as a personal affront when he’s not the best at anything, be it “Madden” or chess or locker-room hamper-basketball or sparring in the gym.
“I’m going to be phenomenal,” he said. “[Expletive] phenomenal.”
Cowboys’ Jerry Jones: ‘I Haven’t Slept’ Due to Excitement over 2024 NFL Playoffs - Adam Wells, Bleacher Report
Jones is very anxious for the Cowboys to start their playoff run.
Sleep is very essential, especially if you are 81 years old, but it’s apparently hard to come by if you own an NFL team getting ready for the postseason.
Appearing on The K&C Masterpiece on Audacy’s 105.3 The Fan (starts at 43:30 mark), Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones revealed he hasn’t been getting a lot of rest this week leading up to Sunday’s game against the Green Bay Packers.
“I can’t stand it and I haven’t slept,” he said. “I feel like I was 7/8/9/10 when Santa Claus was coming. ... If you asked me what I wanted [then] I’d almost pee down my leg.”
Jones isn’t necessarily someone every fan roots for, but it is kind of endearing that even after all these years and having been through so many postseason runs with the Cowboys gets nervous.
There are also legitimate reasons for Jones to have nerves about this game. The Packers may be the No. 7 seed in the NFC with a 9-8 record during the regular season, but Jordan Love’s play down the stretch makes them very dangerous.
Love has thrown for 2,150 yards, 18 touchdowns and one interception over the final eight games. He’s thrown at least two touchdown passes in each of the past four games.
Playing at AT&T Stadium has been a true advantage for the Cowboys this season. They were the only team to go undefeated at home (8-0). Their average margin of victory in those games was 21.5 points, though two of their last three wins were by a total of seven points.
Iron is sharpening iron when it comes to McCarthy and Prescott.
Mike McCarthy needed Dak Prescott. Prescott needed McCarthy.
Their first year together as Dallas Cowboys playcaller and quarterback has been an unqualified success. Prescott led the NFL with 36 touchdown passes. The Cowboys led the NFL in scoring with 29.9 points per game. Prescott completed a career-high 69.9% of his passes. The Cowboys were fifth in yards per game (371.6).
As the Cowboys enter the playoffs Sunday against the Green Bay Packers (4:25, p.m. ET, Fox), McCarthy and Prescott are tasked with being their best when the stakes are the highest or else the regular-season numbers will seem hollow.
“Being able to work with him hand-in-hand each and every day — about the game plan, about the playcall, the playcaller purpose — I know what he’s thinking. He knows my strengths, what I’m trying to get to,” Prescott said. “We know the strengths of this offense and the players around me. It’s been fun.”
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