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Are Cowboys Defensive Triplets As Bad As They Say?

The Triplets. A term cemented in Dallas Cowboys lure forever because of the success of the 1990’s and three Hall of Famers on offense. Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith, and Michael Irvin. After the selection of Ezekiel Elliott in the 2016 NFL Draft, Cowboys fans are hopeful that the dawn of a new Triplets is right around the corner. Tony Romo, Ezekiel Elliott, and Dez Bryant.

Kevin Brady



Cowboys Blog - Want Hope? Look At The Defense

The Triplets.

A term cemented in Dallas Cowboys lure forever because of the success of the 1990's and three Hall of Famers on offense.

Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith, and Michael Irvin.

After the selection of Ezekiel Elliott in the 2016 NFL Draft, Cowboys fans are hopeful that the dawn of a new Triplets is right around the corner.

Tony Romo, Ezekiel Elliott, and Dez Bryant.

Cowboys Blog - Don't Stop Believing: Cowboys Scenarios To Winning NFC East Title

Dallas Cowboys Tony Romo, left, demonstrates the holding call he wanted on teammate Dez Bryant during the first half against the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium on September 13, 2015 in Arlington, Texas. UPI/Ian Halperin

Cowboys fans are not the only ones who expect these three to be great together, however. The entire NFL world is scared of what Dallas can do offensively, and Bill Barnwell of is no different.

Barnwell ranked the top offensive triplets in the NFL, with the Dallas Cowboys slated as the sixth best trio. I would even go as far as to argue that sixth is too low for this group, who may be on tap to overtake the Pittsburgh Steelers as the best set of triplets in the entire league.

It is not often, however, that we think of a teams defensive set of triplets. That is, the three best players and leaders on a particular defense.

Bill Barnwell also decided to rank these trios, slating the Cowboys as only the 29th best in the NFL.

In other words, Barnwell believes the Cowboys are the league's fourth worst defense in terms of triplets.

Yeah, that's bad.

While we all agree that the Cowboys defense has to answer a ton of questions this season, and that the defense is the weaker of the two units, it is hard for me to think they are the fourth worst.

In fact, I believe they are far from it.

I believe the Cowboys would have faired much better in the rankings had Barnwell put the right three players together to form this triplet.

Cowboys Headlines - Are Any Of The Cowboys Defensive Players Irreplaceable? 2

Dallas Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee (50) drops back into coverage during an NFL game against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday Sept. 15, 2013 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, MO. (AP Photo/TUSP, Jay Biggerstaff)

Defensive linemen Tyrone Crawford and DeMarcus Lawrence join linebacker Sean Lee to serve as the Cowboys triplets in Barnwell's rankings. But how did he come up with these names?

Yes, Sean Lee is obviously the man of this group and must be included, and Tyrone Crawford is not only the Cowboys best defensive lineman but also seems to be somewhat of a leader for the group.

But I would say that if we are naming three players to the "triplets," cornerback Orlando Scandrick must be considered; especially instead of DeMarcus Lawrence, who is currently facing a four game suspension.

Lawrence is the only pass rusher on this roster who has produced so far in his career, but I certainly wouldn't name him a leader of the defense, or even as one of the three "best" players on the defense as a whole.Cowboys Blog - Orlando Scandrick Suspended 4 Games, So Now What?

While Sean Lee is the brains behind the operation, Orlando Scandrick has shown that he brings the attitude and drive to this group. He is the one who gives the Cowboys defense their edge, an edge we didn't see for much of 2015 because of his absence.

With Scandrick back, that edge and that (for lack of a better word) swag will be back. With Scandrick back, the turnovers may start to come back. And with Scandrick back, this defensive triplet is much better than 29th in the entire NFL.

Barnwell also calls Byron Jones a "second-tier starter," a term which will never be used again with Jones after the show he will put on in 2016.

Maybe I sound a bit too much like a rabid fan here, but in my mind, there is no way the Cowboys defensive triplets deserve to be ranked this low. And if you are going to rank the triplets, at least include the right three guys.

Barnwell's entire list can be read here, on

Ranking the NFL's defensive triplets from 32-1

Jun 22, 2016 Bill BarnwellESPN Staff Writer Close Bill Barnwell is a staff writer for Last week, spurred by the quietest weeks of the NFL schedule, I ran through the NFL's offensive triplets and ranked them, 1-32. The Steelers finished first and the Browns last.

Die-hard Cowboys fan from the Northeast, so you know I am here to defend the 'boys whenever necessary. Began writing for a WordPress Cowboys Blog, and am currently a college student. Lets get going.

  • Freddie

    Barnwell, just like all the ESPN commentators are ALL full of CRAP. Seems like their Jon is ONLY to downgrade every aspect of the Cowboys as a whole. They're just a bunch of Negative commentators. That's why I dom't listen to them on ESPN. Don't be surprise if the Cowboys come out of nowhere and prove ESPN wrong (which I hope they do). Season hasn't even started yet and they are ranking teams with their STUPIDITY.

    • Kevin Brady

      Hopefully you're right, Freddie, because we are all looking forward to a great season! Thanks for reading and commenting.

  • K. Wade

    ESPN SUX!!

Player News

Dallas Cowboys to Re-Sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur for 2018

Sean Martin



Dallas Cowboys to Re-Sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladoucer for 2018 1

Continuity is the key to good special teams play in the NFL. Already losing long-time Special Teams Coordinator Rich Bisaccia to the Raiders - who promptly snatched ST aces Keith Smith and Kyle Wilber in free agency - the Dallas Cowboys have announced their intentions to re-sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur for the 2018 season.

Returning on a one-year deal, the fan favorite Ladouceur will be back to do what he does best in cleanly executing almost every special teams snap for Chris Jones or Dan Bailey to handle.

Todd Archer on Twitter

Long snapper L.P. Ladouceur will re-sign with the Cowboys on Monday, according to sources, on a one-year deal. He will be in his 14th season with the franchise. Only Jason Witten, Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Bill Bates and Mark Tuinei will have more years of...

While Jones has improved as the Cowboys' punter with each passing season, Kicker Dan Bailey actually enters 2018 as another question mark on this unit. With the general belief around the team being that Bailey will be just fine moving forward, the Cowboys will no longer have to worry about who handles long snaps next year either.

Dallas Cowboys to Re-Sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladoucer for 2018

Dallas Cowboys LS L.P. Ladouceur

L.P. Ladouceur is back in the silver and blue, and in this moment, everything can be alright with the world.

Tell us what you think about "Dallas Cowboys to Re-Sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur for 2018" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

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Player News

Report: Raiders Sign Former Cowboys LB Kyle Wilber

Kevin Brady



Cowboys Headlines - Dallas Cowboys Re-Sign Linebacker Kyle Wilber

A Free Agency period filled with departures continued for the Dallas Cowboys today, as the Oakland Raiders have reportedly signed the now-former Cowboys LB Kyle Wilber.


The Raiders have signed LB Kyle Wilber:

Wilber has been with the Cowboys since 2012, and has played in all 16 games four of the past five seasons. Most of his time has come on special teams, but he did provide solid linebacker depth for the Cowboys since joining the team.

Dallas has now lost both Wilber and Anthony Hitchens, depleting their linebacker depth even further over the last couple weeks.

The Raiders have now signed two key special teams contributors for the Cowboys in Keith Smith and Kyle Wilber this offseason. Hopefully Dallas can replace these types of "replacement level" players throughout the rest of the offseason, especially during the NFL Draft.

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Player News

Report: Cowboys Officially Release CB Orlando Scandrick

Kevin Brady



Orlando Scandrick

After requesting his release from the team just a few days ago, Cowboys cornerback Orlando Scandrick has gotten his wish. According to ESPN's Josina Anderson, Scandrick has officially been cut by the Dallas Cowboys.

Josina Anderson on Twitter

I'm told the #Cowboys have informed CB Orlando Scandrick he will be released, per source.

This move will reportedly save the Cowboys roughly $1.4M against the salary cap, as we hope they finally look to make some moves during the Free Agency period.

Scandrick's release comes after an offseason in which the Cowboys totally overhauled the back end of their defense, specifically their cornerbacks. With the emergence of young, promising players such as Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis, and the health issues of the aging Scandrick, the move makes a lot of sense.

In fact, after the Cowboys drafted Awuzie in the second round of last year's draft it was rumored the Cowboys were looking to move Scandrick for extra draft picks. Instead, one year later, they have cut him to save some cap room.

Orlando Scandrick should have a market to find a new team elsewhere, but his time in Dallas has now come to a close.

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