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Cowboys Sign LB Johnson

With the lack of depth at linebacker due to the injury bug that has struck the Cowboys in recent weeks, the Cowboys signed OLB Curtis Johnson on Tuesday. Johnson, a former defensive end with the Colts who was waived/injured because of a hamstring injury, is hoping to convert to an outside linebacker in the Cowboys 3-4 scheme.

The transition has been done by both Dallas’ starting outside linebackers Anthony Spencer and DeMarcus Ware. At 6’3, 237 lbs, Johnson has the size to play the position. The only question is will he be able to make the transition from DE in a 4-3 system, where you do not play in coverage, to a 3-4 OLB who will be forced to cover tight ends and play zone coverage.

While the Cowboys need depth at linebacker, the primary concern has to be special teams. With so many players injured, including the top half of this years draft stock, the Cowboys have very little special teams depth. Johnson will help fill in the gap left by injured backers: 3rd round pick Jason Williams (ankle sprain), 4th round pick Brandon Williams (torn ACL), and sixth round pick Stephen Hodge (knee).

To make room on the roster, the Cowboys release guard Greg Isdaner. Isdaner is a rookie free agent who was an extreme long shot to make the roster. The Cowboys will have to cut the roster down from 75 to
53 by Saturday to get ready for the season opener against Tampa Bay on September 13th.


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