COMPREHENSIVE COWBOYS' CATCH-UP
By mark rogers
April 2, 2009
For all of you out there who can't spend your days keeping up with Dallas Cowboys' offseason news...here's the happenings in a nutshell:
In an offseason that will see America's Team transition from Texas Stadium to JerryWorld, the new stadium has been the least newsworthy story in the last few months.
It all started with Anthony Spencer being arrested in Indianapolis for public intoxication and disorderly conduct. That was January. He was cleared of the charges in late March. No one else notable was arrested but former Cowboy Terry Glenn did have a mug shot taken.
Mike Shanahan was close to signing some sort of deal with Dallas, but it fell through at the last minute. Dan Reeves was also at Valley Ranch for a few days and the rumor was he was to be some sort of glorified consultant, but a deal fell through apparently involving Reeves and a time card.
Zach Thomas isn't coming back. Neither is Kevin Burnett who signed a free agent deal with San Diego. Coming in to try and replace them are former Atlanta linebackers Keith Brooking and Matt Stewart. Brooking is a well-known player although a little older. Stewart hasn't played since 2006. Both played under Cowboys' coach Wade Phillips in Atlanta.
Adam Jones was released...no surprise there although many of his teammates were caught off-guard. Much like they were when just days after Cowboys' owner Jerry Jones hinted that Terrell Owens would remain in Dallas, he was released...the SAME day long-time safety Roy Williams was released.
We let Brad Johnson go (thank goodness gracious), Jerry and Company were talking to former California star Kyle Boller but ended up having to give up play-making corner/safety Anthony Henry to get a washed up, chubby Jon Kitna from Detroit. This all before rumors swirled around saying that Jerry wanted unhappy QB Jay Cutler - who ended up being traded to Chicago today.
Speaking of Detroit, Jason Garrett was once again rumored to be involved in many head coaching searches including Detroit, Denver and St. Louis. He's staying in Dallas.
But his counterpart, defensive coordinator Brian Stewart, was fired. His replacement? Already on the payroll...head coach Wade Phillips.
We also have a new special teams coach in Joe DeCamillis.
Replacing Roy Williams will be Jacksonville safety Gerard Sensabaugh. A good move in my opinion.
Emerging superstar Chris Canty proved to be worth more than the Cowboys could give. He ended up getting a 6-year, 42 MILLION dollar deal to join the hated Giants. But not all was lost on that deal because the Cowboys signed free agent, pass-rushing specialist Igor Olshansky from San Diego...another player familiar with Phillips' system. And he's only costing us 18 million over four years.
On the injury front Terrence Newman and Patrick Crayton both had ankle surgery early in the offseason and are expected to fully recover. Both players also had some things to say to the media that garnered quite a bit of negative attention...Newman talked about Tony Romo and Jessica Simpson - Crayton talked about Romo and Jason Garrett.
Speaking of talking to the media, head coach Wade Phillips was under a rumored "gag order" at the end of the season which was apparently lifted last month when Phillips finally began talking to the media. He denied the "gag order" rumors.
Several big name free agents said publicly that they'd like to play in Dallas: Ray Lewis, Julius Peppers and Larry Johnson. None will be in Dallas next year.
The Cowboys have 11 draft picks. One in the second and third rounds, two in the fourth, three in the fifth, two in the sixth and two in the seventh. WR and safety seem to be the big targets.
And it wouldn't be a typical Cowboy offseason without DE Greg Ellis whining about his future with the club. He's at it again.
The Cowboys' first preseason game in JerryWorld will be August 21 against Tennessee. The regular season schedule will be released very soon.
Those are the big things.
Now that you're all caught up, you can rest easy and wait for training camp to begin. The good news? TO, Roy Williams, Pacman Jones, Brad Johnson and Brian Stewart are gone. The bad news? Cowboys' fans can't help but anticipate another season full of high hopes and huge expectations that leave us frustrated and demoralized in December.
Maybe this will be the year we return to true greatness...maybe...please...for the love of Tom Landry.
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