Adrian Peterson To Dallas Rumors

Could this be the new face of the Cowboys running attack come next season?

The biggest story for the Dallas Cowboys this offseason is what will the Cowboys do regarding Des Bryant and Demarco Murray? We can’t afford both, and without one we will not be the same next year. The debate is which will be easier to replace? My opinion is that it is harder to replace a down field threat and playmaker like Dez. I believe that with our offensive line we can put any competent running back in our offense and be successful. With the most likely scenario being Murray becoming a free agent, we need to look at other options. One of the bigger rumors that is picking up steam is involving a running back that almost broke the single season rushing record.

There have rumors swirling about the possibilities of Adrian Peterson coming home to Dallas in order to replace Demarco Murray. This had been one the more popular rumors because of Peterson’s comments about wanting to return to his home state of Texas to play for the Cowboys. Last offseason rumors picked up after word got out that Peterson talked to owner Jerry Jones about the possibilities of Peterson eventually joining the Cowboys, and Jerry Jones liked the idea. The only way that this deal would be possible is if Peterson were to be cut and we signed him, or if the Cowboys were to trade for Peterson. Both of these scenarios however involve Peterson taking a pay cut, but the hope is that Peterson would give the Cowboys a hometown discount in order to bring the two together.

A Bleacher Report post said that the Cowboys have some interest in Peterson. When I saw this report I got excited with the idea of this happening. With more rumors suggesting that Murray is on his way out this looks like a serious options for the Cowboys to replace Murray. If the Cowboys do not think Joseph Randle will be able to fill the void that Murray will no doubt leave, the best option for the Cowboys to look at is free agency. There is no doubt that the Cowboys will take care of Dez Bryant first which leaves the Cowboys with question marks at running back. We should look at Adrian Peterson as a possibility especially if he is willing to take a pay cut. With one of the great running backs in the past couple of seasons, and combine him with arguably the best offensive line in football, the Cowboys will be an even more devastating offense come the 2015 season.

Cowboys Likely To Restructure Romo’s Deal to Get Cap Space

Tony_Romo

In an effort to create more salary cap space, the Cowboys are expected to restructure Tony Romo’s contract at some point this offseason, Drew Davison of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports.

That’s how the Cowboys designed their six-year, $108 million contract for Romo two years ago, a deal that has $55 million guaranteed. Essentially, the Cowboys will convert his base salary into a signing bonus to create cap room.

Romo is scheduled to make $17 million in 2015 with his cap number coming in at $27.7 million, something that will be significantly reduced assuming the Cowboys restructure his deal for the second consecutive offseason. Last year, the Cowboys created about $10 million in cap space by doing so.

That decision gives them more flexibility to re-sign their own free agents, as well as pursue others on the market. The Cowboys can clear additional space by doing a similar thing with left tackle Tyron Smith’s contract.

“We all realize that anything you push forward that if you don’t use it it’ll cost you cap space that you could use for other players,” owner Jerry Jones said this week at the Senior Bowl. “On an older player, the farther you put it out in the future the less likely you are to use it. That’s the point. That is the trick.

“On the other hand, the effort is to right now put together the best value we can using those dollars and that’s the art of the deal. I will tell you when I look at Tony I certainly do see four or five more years, so nothing scares me four or five years out.”

“This was carefully thought out when we made our agreement with Tony,” Jerry Jones said. “We knew that as we moved along there will be reallocation is the best way to say it with his salary, moving it around so that at a given time we could put the best group together with his supporting cast.”

NFL Draft 2015: Possibilities for Dallas

The Cowboys have some glaring needs at defense. The draft is their best shot at upgrading at these positions. Free agency will be a hard process because we have to worry about Dez and Demarco. There have been some rumors that the Cowboys could be looking to make a splash with Ndamukong Suh, but that is a wish list item, and to even think about that we have to determine what happens between Dez and Demarco. Since our season is over, and it is officially draft season, I thought what a better time than now to do a little draft preview. Now I am not a draft expert in the slightest, but I can see where our needs are, and by looking at different highlight and game videos, mock drafts, scouting reports, and stats I compiled a short list of players I think will be names to remember when it comes draft time. Without further ado, these are the prospects I think the Cowboys should be looking at when they are officially on the clock.

 

Eli Harold

Eli Harold #7 UVA

 

Eli Harold from the University of Virginia is a defensive end that has come on strong this season. He has had quite the career at Virginia with 36.5 TFLs which is good for 10th in UVA history, 141 tackles, 4 fumbles, 17.5 sacks, and was a 2nd team All-ACC selection this year. He is 6’4” 250 lbs., so he is a little on the small side, but he is quite the athlete. From what I saw watching some of his highlights I noticed that he is fast, and very quick off the ball. He ran a 4.6 40-yard dash, and is very good at chasing down the ball carrier. He does a great job of using his hands to get off of blocks. He’s a tall guy, and can get his hands up in the QBs face, and bat down balls. I think he can be a great guy to add to our defensive line, and can be a great upgrade to our pass rush. He’s a speed guy, and if he can add some muscle, and weight to him he will be a force against offensive tackles. Harold is rated as the 8th best outside linebacker on Mel Kiper Jr.’s board, and that can be another role that Harold can fill for Dallas. He is a raw talent so his technique needs some work, but in the hands of Rod Marinelli, I think Harold can become a great pass rusher, and great defensive player.

 

 

Senquez Golsen

Senquez Golsen #21 Ole Miss

 

From Ole Miss this defensive back is a player who’s stock is currently on the rise. He is a small player, and that is his major drawback. At 5’9” 176 lbs. scouts think that Golsen will have an issue when it comes to defending the taller receivers in the league. I will say that having a smaller corner is something to be weary about, but after watching him play, and reading scouting report he is a guy that should be judged off of his play rather than his size. He is only an inch shorter than Orlando Scandrick, and I think once he is in an NFL strength & conditioning program Golsen can get his weight up. He is projected at a 2nd round pick, and his stock is rising. He could benefit from the combine, and shoot up higher. I hope the Cowboys could pick him up in the 2nd round because I think our first round pick should be spent on defensive line, but if Golsen proves to be a much better player, and shows great improvement he could be a solid pick at 27. He does a great job of sticking to the opposing receiver, and has great ball skills. He has good footwork, and fluid hips that make breaking on the ball easy for him, which is apparent by his 16 picks this past season. He is currently ranked as the 9th best corner on Mel Kiper Jr.’s board, was a unanimous All-American pick, and helped close out the win for Ole Miss against Alabama with a game ending pick. He is a playmaker that I think can seriously upgrade our secondary, which has been suspect for the past couple seasons. The addition of Golsen would allow Scandrick to play outside more, and possible move to safety. I will be for sure keeping an eye on Golsen throughout the draft process, combine, and pro days because if his stock continues to rise we could see Senquez Golsen holding the Cowboys jersey on the first night of the NFL Draft.

 

Xavier Williams

 

Xavier Williams #98 UNI

This big boy from Northern Iowa is flying under the radar, but after looking good all week at the East-West Shrine Bowl, looking unblockable during practice, he is getting some attention. Williams is 6’2” 309 lbs. and is a force at the 1-technique. This past season Williams had 66 tackles, 12 TFLs, 8 sacks, 3 pass break ups, and a blocked kick. I watch some plays of Northern Iowa vs. North Dakota State University, and Williams did a good job of creating pressure, getting in the backfield, and getting to the ball carrier. For being a bigger guy, he is quite fast, and has some better than average lateral movement. He was a former wrestler, and that background is quite the extra skill to have playing in the trenches.. He has a great low center of gravity, which allows him to create penetration, and cause havoc amongst the offensive line. There is nothing more frustrating to an offense than to have a defensive player constantly being in the backfield, or getting push on your offensive line, and that is what Williams does. He has natural grown-man strength, and being 6’2” and playing with such great center of gravity he is able to gain leverage on offensive linemen. Now the drawback for Williams is that yes he played at Northern Iowa, so the talent drop off is significant. However, with better competition and better talent he will be able to improve his play. What he definitely needs to work on is his explosion off the line. In the NDSU game it seemed like he was slow off the snap count, which in the NFL will get you demolished. He is the 7th rated defensive tackle on Mel Kiper Jr.’s board, so he is making some noise and getting his name out there. He is projected as a 4th round pick for now, and could be a steal for Dallas if we were to pick him in the 4th round. I think his stock will definitely rise during the draft process, and we could see him move up to the 3rd round. Being from a small school he has no pressure on him to be something his is not, so if he goes into the combines, pro days, and interview process he can truly make a name for himself.

 

Za’Darius Smith

Za’Darius Smith #94 UK

Za’Darius Smith (new favorite name I might add) is a defensive lineman out of the University of Kentucky who has also been a name to look for at the Senior bowls. A 6’4” 273 lbs. defensive end Smith was a force for Kentucky’s defensive line. He plays with a sense of urgency, and with great power at the point of attack. He is a bigger defensive end so his speed is not much to brag about, between a 4.7 and a 4.9 40-time, but he is quick. He is 273 lbs. though, which at defensive end is a big boy. I watched some highlights from 2013 against Fresno and what I noticed was he definitely read blocks well, and did a good job of getting up field, but it was getting off those blocks and bending to the ball carrier that he needs to improve on. He does a good job of setting tackles up with an outside rush, and counters back inside. What Smith has working for him is that he can shed some weight and work on his speed and technique to become a faster more technically sound defensive end, or he can gain some muscle and move inside. Dallas has been rotating guys in and out at the defensive line, so a guy like Smith can be one of those guys that can fill in at both defensive end spots and 3 technique.

 

Cowboys Re-sign Jason Garret and Rod Marinelli

After their devastating season ending loss Sunday, the Cowboys have decided to bring back both Jason Garret and Defensive Coordinator Rod Marinelli. There had been some speculation that Marinelli would join old coaching partner Love Smith in Tampa, but the Cowboys managed to lock him up for 3 years. I was generally concerned that Marinelli would leave because he put together a relatively successful defense given a team with a depleted linebacker core, a secondary with a horrible reputation, and a defensive line that was mediocre at best. I think going into the offseason the Cowboys need to lock up their important players (Dez, Demarco, McClain) and somehow make a splash defensively. It is out main weakness that has killed us during the season. As much as everyone (myself included) wants to blame the Des non-catch on why we lost, look at what our defense did. Aaron Rodgers on 1 leg was 24/35 for 306 yards. The Packets ran at will. 30 rushes for 119 yards, and it looked as if Eddie Lacy could have ran double that. Poor tackling, and no pressure on the QB was the true story of this game. I think Marinelli is what we need to continue building on a relatively successful year defensively. I think if we give Marinelli some more weapons, and definitely add pass rushers to take some pressure of our secondary we can become a top defense in the league. It has been the same story for the past couple of years, but seeing how our team ran this year with very little pass rush when it mattered, it is clear we need to add someone through free agency if we can, or through the draft.

We also locked up Jason Garrett for five years, and to me I could not be any happier. Before the season started I wanted Garrett gone. I was sick of the same old 8-8 season and I did not think Garrett would do anything to deserve to be back. And thankfully I was wrong. Garrett and his staff seemed to put it together to have the best season in a while, and a playoff win which is something Cowboys fans have been waiting for for a very long time. Garrett’s number one concern should be to lock up our coaches, because it made a difference this year. For the Cowboys this is not a season that is lost or a failure. Yes our ultimate goal is the Super Bowl, but going from being predicted at 3-13 to finishing up with the NFC East title, finishing the regular season 12-4, and beating the some very good teams. I am for one very excited to see how the off season goes, and what we will do to build on this season, so we can get our way to the goal of a Super Bowl Championship.

Garrett Doesn’t Put Overturned Call As the Reason To Why Dallas Lost

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said it looked to him like Dez Bryant had made a season-saving catch on his fourth-down grab in the fourth quarter that was later overturned on replay, but his team’s loss to the Packers wasn’t due to officiating, ESPN reports.

Bryant’s leaping, bobbling catch at the Packers 1 on fourth-and-2 was reversed by referee Gene Steratore after Green Bay challenged. Instead of first-and-goal for Dallas, the ball went over to the Packers, who went on to run out the clock on the ensuing drive in the 26-21 victory.

Garrett told Fox Sports after the game that he thought going for it on fourth down “was what we had to do in that situation.”

“It was fourth-and-two, and obviously they ruled it a catch on the field. This game wasn’t about officiating at all. That certainly was a big play in the ballgame. It looked to me like Dez had two feet down and made a move common to the game, which is a thing they talk about a lot.

“We’ve seen him a number of times this year reach out and score touchdowns making that same thing. It seemed like he had the ball at the end of the play as well, so all those things factor into it. But this wasn’t about officiating. We had 60 minutes to prove that we’re the better team, unfortunately we didn’t get it done today,” he said.

Head Official Gene Steratore Explains Dez Bryant Game-Changing Call

A week after being the beneficiary of a controversial call, the Cowboys were the victim of one.

After the game, a pool reporter spoke with head official Gene Steratore about the fourth down play in which it appeared Dez Bryant made a catch that would have made it first and goal.

“Although the receiver is possessing the football, he must maintain possession of that football throughout the entire process of the catch,” Steratore said. “In our judgement he maintained possession but continued to fall and never had another act common to the game. We deemed that by our judgement to be the full process of the catch, and at the time he lands and the ball hits the ground, it comes loose as it hits the ground, which would make that incomplete; although he re-possesses it, it does contact the ground when he reaches so the repossession is irrelevant because it was ruled an incomplete pass when we had the ball hit the ground.”

Steratore was then asked about Bryant’s elbow hitting the ground before the ball did.

“When you’re still going through the process of the catch, elbows or knees are irrelevant, he must complete that entire process with the football, maintain possession throughout,” Steratore said.

Steratore is no stranger to controversy. In 2010, he overturned what would’ve been a game-winning touchdown by the Lions’ Calvin Johnson for the same “entire process of the catch” rule that was used to overturn Bryant’s catch on Sunday.

NFL Tells Cowboys They Missed Up to Seven Calls in Playoff Win Over Lions

While the Cowboys get ready for another playoff game this weekend, a road game vs the Green Bay Packers, the NFL world is still talking about the calls, or missed calls in Sunday’s Cowboys win over the Lions.

The Lions have received non-stop media attention for two blown calls by the officials in the team’s 24-20 loss to the Cowboys but according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the Cowboys submitted 10 questionable officiating decisions to the league and the NFL has admitted the officials failed to flag the Lions seven times, Justin Rogers of Mlive reports.

Only two specific examples were provided by reporter Clarence Hill Jr. The first, a missed hands to the face call that knocked offensive lineman Jeremy Parnell‘s helmet off.

The second, and far more relevant to the finish of the game, was a defensive holding committed by Lions safety James Ihedigbo on Dallas tight end Jason Witten on a third-and-8 play with 6:44 remaining in the fourth quarter.

The game of course ended with a lot of controversy, as the Lions were irate over the pickup of the flag during a late pass interference penalty that was picked up.

The Lions to this day are arguing the calls, while the Cowboys get ready for a Divisional Playoff game.

The Standard still has the Cowboys at 18/5 to win the NFC this season, and currently in terms of the Super Bowl, Dallas is listed at 7/1 to take home another Lombardi.

Lions at Cowboys Friday Injury Report

DETROIT LIONS
Status Report
OUT G Larry Warford (knee)
DOUBTFUL DT Nick Fairley (knee)
PROBABLE DE Ezekiel Ansah (toe), WR Calvin Johnson (ankle), DE Darryl Tapp (not injury related)
Practice Report
DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICE
Wednesday DT Nick Fairley (knee), G Larry Warford (knee)
Thursday DE Darryl Tapp (not injury related), G Larry Warford (knee)
Friday G Larry Warford (knee)
LIMITED PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
Wednesday WR Calvin Johnson (ankle)
Thursday DT Nick Fairley (knee)
Friday DE Ezekiel Ansah (toe), DT Nick Fairley (knee)
FULL PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
Thursday WR Calvin Johnson (ankle)
Friday WR Calvin Johnson (ankle), DE Darryl Tapp (not injury related)
DALLAS COWBOYS
Status Report
DOUBTFUL T Doug Free (ankle)
QUESTIONABLE DE Tyrone Crawford (illness), LB Anthony Hitchens (ankle)
PROBABLE LB Bruce Carter (knee), DT Nick Hayden (shoulder), S Jeff Heath (thumb), G Zack Martin (ankle), LB Rolando McClain (knee, illness), RB DeMarco Murray (hand), DT Josh Brent (calf), QB Tony Romo (back), S C.J. Spillman (groin), LB Dekoda Watson (hamstring)
Practice Report
DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICE
Wednesday T Doug Free (ankle), DT Nick Hayden (shoulder), LB Anthony Hitchens (ankle), QB Tony Romo (back), S C.J. Spillman (groin)
Thursday T Doug Free (ankle), DT Nick Hayden (shoulder), LB Anthony Hitchens (ankle), S C.J. Spillman (groin)
Friday DE Tyrone Crawford (illness), T Doug Free (ankle), LB Anthony Hitchens (ankle)
LIMITED PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
Wednesday LB Rolando McClain (knee, illness), LB Dekoda Watson (hamstring)
Friday DT Nick Hayden (shoulder), S C.J. Spillman (groin)
FULL PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
Wednesday LB Bruce Carter (knee), S Jeff Heath (thumb), G Zack Martin (ankle), RB DeMarco Murray (hand), DT Josh Brent (calf)
Thursday LB Bruce Carter (knee), S Jeff Heath (thumb), G Zack Martin (ankle), LB Rolando McClain (knee, illness), RB DeMarco Murray (hand), DT Josh Brent (calf), QB Tony Romo (back), LB Dekoda Watson (hamstring)
Friday LB Bruce Carter (knee), S Jeff Heath (thumb), G Zack Martin (ankle), LB Rolando McClain (knee, illness), RB DeMarco Murray (hand), DT Josh Brent (calf), QB Tony Romo (back), LB Dekoda Watson (hamstring)