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BREAKING: Cowboys Release LB Jaylon Smith After Failed Trade Efforts

The Cowboys have surprisingly released Linebacker Jaylon Smith. Reports have Dallas trying to trade the veteran but with no takers, leading to today’s release.

Smith’s release comes as Keanu Neal returns from the COVID-19 list, necessitating a roster move to make room.

Adam Schefter on Twitter: “In-season surprise: Cowboys released LB Jaylon Smith, per source. / Twitter”

In-season surprise: Cowboys released LB Jaylon Smith, per source.

Todd Archer on Twitter: “The Cowboys have decided to release Jaylon Smith, as Adam Schefter said. Smith is owed the remainder of his $7.2 million base salary this year. Jerry Jones spoke with Smith today about the decision, according to sources. / Twitter”

The Cowboys have decided to release Jaylon Smith, as Adam Schefter said. Smith is owed the remainder of his $7.2 million base salary this year. Jerry Jones spoke with Smith today about the decision, according to sources.

Jane Slater on Twitter: “Can confirm. My sources tell me the #Cowboys tried unsuccessfully to trade Jaylon Smith. “He did everything we asked him to” but ultimately the play of guys like Keanu Neal, Leighton Vander Esch and I’m told perhaps increased use now of Jabril Cox led to the move bc of ⬇️ https://t.co/2YkPjxS6Ij / Twitter”

Can confirm. My sources tell me the #Cowboys tried unsuccessfully to trade Jaylon Smith.

A 2nd-round pick in 2016, Jaylon overcame a career-threatening injury at Notre Dame and enjoyed early success in Dallas. He deserved to go to the Pro Bowl in 2018 and finally went the following season.

However, 2020 saw a sharp decline in Smith’s play and public questioning of then-Defensive Coordinator Mike Nolan’s scheme. But while the team did move on from Nolan this year, they also did a lot to upgrade their talent at linebacker and pushed Jaylon into a reserve role.

Smith only appeared on 25% of Dallas’ defensive snaps in Week 1. The numbers went up in Weeks 2-3 with Micah Parsons playing more DE and then Keanu Neal hitting the COVID list. But with Neal back and rookie Jabril Cox to get on the field, the Cowboys have decided to end their relationship with Jaylon.

What do you think?

Jess Haynie

Written by Jess Haynie

Cowboys fan since 1992, blogger since 2011. Bringing you the objectivity of an outside perspective with the passion of a die-hard fan. I love to talk to my readers, so please comment on any article and I'll be sure to respond!

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  1. Sad for him. For me? Less screaming at my tv set is good for the environment. Seriously though, he was a progress stopper. Not happy that he wasn’t cut or traded before March. That $ could have been used towards Gilmore or something similar,maybe even packaged Jaylon up in the deal with a restructure.
    These are missed, pretty obvious opportunities that help win championships. I just don’t understand why they are missing the obvious.

  2. Moving Smith was rumored during the offseason. Now with the addition and high level of play by MP, and Cox and Neal waiting in the wings, it was enough to supplant JS. Too bad we couldn’t have gotten a trade partner though. I respect his intestinal fortitude to come back from that devastating injury in college. Wish him well, unless, if and when, he plays against us..

  3. Interesting he couldn’t come up with a sudden injury and not be stashed on IR, in order to buy them more time for a trade attempt? Unless you cannot a player currently on the IR?

  4. Everyone knows that the NFL stands for not for long and that goes for coaches and players. There all expendable assets because it’s a business and when they don’t need you anymore they move on from you just like everyone else in the working world, but the one thing with them they make great money while there working.

  5. No more watching his weird gallop across the field late to an assignment, or trying to get back to where he should be after guessing wrong again.

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