Broken Promise: Randy Gregory Fails Again, Should Cowboys Walk Away?

    “The saddest thing in life is wasted talent.”
    – A Bronx Tale

    has failed another drug test. Currently serving a combined 14-game ban for a previous offenses, Gregory is now subject to a year-long ban from the NFL.

     - Randy Gregory, #94
    AP Photo/Alix Drawec

    Gregory's drug issues and personal baggage cost him millions of dollars in the 2015 . He could have been a Top-15 pick or better, but the dynamic pass rusher fell to the because of these concerns. They have cost him nearly all of his second season, and now they may cost him his career.

    Clearly, Gregory hasn't learned any lessons. Now, the question is if the Cowboys have learned theirs.

    The debate about use and how much the NFL should be policing it is a separate issue. Regardless of your politics or personal opinion, the simple fact is that there are a set of rules right now for being an NFL player. You either care enough to follow them or you don't.

    With Randy Gregory showing he doesn't care enough about being a football player, the Cowboys have to decide if he's worth their trouble. Does this young team, currently a contender and seemingly on the cusp of staying there for some time, need a guy like Gregory in the locker room?

    You don't need to look far for an example of how a team's faith can go unrewarded. is probably sitting somewhere along on the Chattahoochee River, waiting for a fish to bite while his football career goes to an early grave.

    Cowboys Headlines - Rolando McClain and Randy Gregory: A Tale of Two Lockers 1

    That isn't to say all risks fail. There have been many NFL players who overcame whatever personal problems caused a stumble and became productive, even superstars.

    The risk factor on Randy Gregory wasn't just from personal problems, either. Although he was 6'5″ as a rookie, his lean 235-lb frame led to concern that he could be put on the weight to hold up as a . While his athleticism and burst worked well in the 2015 , Gregory was not effective when he played during the real games.

    Now, unfortunately, Gregory's behavior and choices are making the physical issues a moot point.

    By all accounts, Gregory is not the kind of selfish, lazy player that Rolando McClain has proven to be. Not only did he go to rehab for the drug issues but he's reportedly been with the team while suspended.

    The difference between Gregory and McClain was also evident in how the Cowboys have talked about and handled them during their . Dallas clearly still believed in Gregory and thought he was capable of turning things around.

    Even if marijuana isn't an addictive substance, there's something about its effects that Gregory is clearly addicted to. If there really is some internal pain that he's trying to escape from with his drug use, you can't help but feel sympathy.

    Unfortunately, that doesn't mean he deserve to play in the NFL. None of us could use that excuse in our own jobs.

    had a great quote earlier this year about how availability is more important than ability. Whether its drug suspensions, chronic , or whatever else keeps a guy off the football field, his talent and potential don't amount to much when he's in streets clothes.

    Assuming this latest and the one-year stick, Randy Gregory would not be eligible to play football again until the Cowboys last few regular season games of 2017. They have two options now:

    Cowboys Blog - Super Bowl MVP Von Miller Gives Randy Gregory Hope 21. Cut Gregory Loose

    For the last few seasons, the “Right Kind of Guy” mantra that preaches has been kicked squarely in the crotch. This latest failing from Gregory may not find much room for mercy.

    was the glaring contradiction, but the issues with Rolando McClain and Gregory haven't helped. 's spree of craziness, though he didn't last long with the Cowboys, hasn't helped the perception. Even the teams loyalty to after his DUI was brought into question.

    Dallas could simply end their relationship with Gregory immediately or after the season. The two remaining years on his rookie contract would be a wash on the ; the dead money and cap relief are almost equal in 2017.

    You only make this move if you believe one of the following:

    • Your locker room needs to see that you will only tolerate so much from any one player, no matter where he was drafted or how much potential you think he has.
    • You've truly lost faith that Randy Gregory can turn his life and career around.

    2. Wait and See

     - Randy Gregory, #94With Gregory suspended and not counting against their roster limit, the Cowboys don't necessarily have to do anything. If he started now, Gregory would have almost six months until the Cowboys post-draft camps and . Perhaps a more extensive or intensive rehab stay, as opposed to the few months he did this past summer, would be fruitful.

    Two of the NFL's most notorious marijuana offenders, wide receivers and Justin Blackmon, remain under contract with their teams. The difference between them and Gregory is that they've both displayed league-leading potential when they've played, whereas Gregory has barely played enough to do so.

    Dallas doesn't get that second-round pick back if they Gregory. He counts very little against the salary cap and doesn't impact the roster while suspended. Knowing all that, how much does it really cost to keep him around?

    If you're confident in your locker room and don't see Gregory as a bad influence or precedent, there's really nothing to gain by releasing him. You'd only be appeasing angry, disappointed fans.

    ~ ~ ~

    In the midst of so much good in this 2016 Cowboys season, a story like this almost feels out of place. Randy Gregory, as absent as he's been the last two years, has never seemed less a part of this team's culture or direction as right now.

    The organization's momentum hasn't been this strong in some time, nor its future so bright. It's sad that Gregory doesn't appear capable of being part of the youth movement.

    Even if it's not in Dallas, I just hope he finds some answers soon.


    Jess Haynie
    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!


    Are the 2022 Cowboys better than the 2021 Cowboys?

    This topic should be interesting. I know that the...

    Do the Cowboys really need Odell Beckham Jr?

    Free agent WR Odell Beckham Jr. is set to...

    How the NFC East went from Least to Beast

    The NFC East has been considered the worst division...

    Cowboys penalty problem might cut their season short again

    The Dallas Cowboys have put themselves in a spot...


    Daily Cowboys News in Your Inbox
    Your email address:*
    Please enter all required fields Click to hide
    Correct invalid entries Click to hide

    Trending Now

    Cowboys Reveal New Uniforms for Week 17 vs Titans

    Another uniform emerges for the Dallas Cowboys to wear...

    Why are the Dallas Cowboys Considered “America’s Team?”

    The Dallas Cowboys are one National Football League team...

    Brett Maher continues to kick with confidence

    A topic of conversation throughout the offseason was who...

    Diggs Island – Trevon Diggs is entering elite status

    It’s hard to find a cornerback that is under...

    The Star: Getting Inside the Dallas Cowboys New Home

    The Dallas Cowboys star logo is one of the...

    Cowboys Nostalgia: Before Jerry Jones

    25 years ago Jerry Jones bought the Dallas Cowboys...

    Cowboys vs Commanders: Week 4 Injury Report

    The Dallas Cowboys (2-1) clash with the Washington Commanders...

    Like it or not, it’s time to give the front office credit

    All of a sudden the Cowboys have won three...

    How far Dorance Armstrong has come with his football career

    Defensive End Dorance Armstrong was drafted in 2018 by the Dallas Cowboys. Armstrong has been a name that a lot of Cowboy fans have...

    Basham activated as Cowboys prepare to face NFL’s top running backs

    Defensive end Tarell Basham has been activated from injured reserve after missing seven games due to a knee injury suffered during the Cowboys' Week...

    The history of Micah Parsons

    Time to get to know another Cowboy a little bit better. Linebacker Micah Parsons is up for a detailed look at his entire football...


    Newest Most Voted
    Inline Feedbacks
    View all comments
    chrisp tovar


    David Garcia

    Last sentence on the 8th paragraph doesn’t make sense. I think you need the word “when” instead of on. Loved the Bronx tale quote to start the read.


    Let him and McClain hit the road, you don’t need that sort of negative chemistry around your locker room. The guys who are busting their tails every day in practice and doing it right will look at the coaches with some side eyes if they keep these guys on the roster..