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Looking for Byron Jones: Keeping Busy in the Cowboys’ Secondary

Sean Martin



Cowboys Blog - Byron Jones, Where Have You Been? 1

It is a question many Cowboys fans, including myself, have been asking in the early stages of this season - what impact has first round pick Byron Jones had on this defense?

Jones has been relatively invisible and has not gotten the chance to show off his freakish athletic ability. However, for a defensive back, attention can be the last thing you want.

As someone that aspires in broadcasting, I can confirm that mentioning a defensive back's name is often out of necessity - when they make a great (or, more times than not, negative) play.

The speed of the game is simply too fast to consistently notice a corner that is locking somebody down unless it is a top wide receiver.

Jones has not gone up against top receivers with the resurgence of Morris Claiborne. Rather, he has seen most of his snaps lined up against the opposing tight end. Knowing that, it's time to take a deeper look at his performance this season and evaluate the impact the rookie has had.

The Cowboys allowed the most receptions to tight ends last season by a mile. This season, they have allowed just 16 receptions - better than or on par with 20 teams around the league.

Giants' tight ends Larry Donnell and Daniel Fells combined for six receptions against Dallas in week 1, but neither found the end zone.

The following week, Jones was a big part of the Cowboys defensive domination in Philadelphia - blanketing Zach Ertz for three receptions.

Two Falcons' tight ends combined for two receptions in the team's week 3 loss and New Orleans had similar struggles at the position.

Josh Hill did score the first TE touchdown the Cowboys allowed for the Saints, but Jones was not on the coverage.

This week, Jones may actually make headlines - for better or worse - against the league's premier tight end Rob Gronkowski.

There is no question that Gronkowski will be the best TE the Cowboys have seen all season, and the Patriots likely the best all around offense.

Cowboys Blog - Byron Jones, Where Have You Been?

Jones has the support of his head coach, who said, "Rob Gronkowski isn't Byron Jones' problem. He's our problem". If Sean Lee is fully healthy, expect him to see some snaps in coverage against Gronkowski.

Overall, this game will serve as a measuring stick for the rookie Byron Jones.

Some of the league's top defenders have been abused by Gronkowski in recent history. If he is able to use his speed and athleticism to shut down Gronk, it may finally turn some positive attention towards him moving forward.

What have you seen from Jones' this season? Can he lock down Gronkowski? Let me know below or on Twitter @ShoreSportsNJ!

Tell us what you think about "Looking for Byron Jones: Keeping Busy in the Cowboys’ Secondary" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Pleasant NJ, no we're not how you think we are. Host of "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. You may @ me: @SeanMartinNFL.

Player News

Dallas Cowboys Sign LB Joe Thomas to 2 Year Deal

Sean Martin



Dallas Cowboys Sign LB Joe Thomas to 2 Year Deal

At long last, the Dallas Cowboys have their first free agent addition of this offseason. Having lost starters Jonathan Cooper and Anthony Hitchens at left guard and linebacker respectively, the team has added depth at LB with Joe Thomas signing a two-year deal.

The 2018 season will actually mark Joe Thomas' second stint with the Dallas Cowboys, as he was signed to their practice squad in 2015. The team that signed Thomas out of South Carolina State following the 2014 draft, the Green Bay Packers, added Thomas back to their active roster for the 2015 season.

Jon Machota on Twitter

Source: Cowboys have agreed to a 2-year deal with free agent LB Joe Thomas. He visited the Cowboys today. Thomas has played in 42 games over the last three seasons with the Packers. He had a career-high 70 tackles in 2016.

Thomas has spent the last three seasons starting eight games for the Packers, recording 70 tackles and an interception in 2016.

A contingency plan of Sean Lee and Jaylon Smith carrying the Cowboys for 16 games at LB requires adequate depth, which is exactly what the Cowboys are typically in the market for come free agency. Waiting longer than usual to make their first splash, the Cowboys absolutely need an addition like Thomas to perform better than last year's FA class.

Used in sub packages by the Packers while also playing special teams - where the Cowboys have lost core players in Keith Smith and Kyle Wilber - Thomas will have a great chance to impress two new Dallas coaches in Ben Bloom and Keith O'Quinn.

Tell us what you think about "Dallas Cowboys Sign LB Joe Thomas to 2 Year Deal" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

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Player News

Cowboys Trade for FB Jamize Olawale from Raiders

Jess Haynie



Jamize Olawale, Raiders

Less than a week after the Cowboys lost fullback Keith Smith to the Raiders in free agency, the two teams have worked out a trade to send FB Jamize Olawale from Oakland to Dallas.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

Fullback trade! The #Raiders are sending FB Jamize Olawale to the #Cowboys, sources say. Dallas has its fullback, one who was with Oakland since 2012.

To facilitate the trade, the Cowboys will send their fifth-round pick (173rd overall) to the Raiders for their sixth-round pick (192nd), moving back just 19 spots.

In return, Dallas not only brings in a veteran replacement at FB but a player they already know.

Jamize Olawale was an undrafted rookie free agent of the Cowboys in 2012. Despite a strong showing in that preseason, Dallas did not have room for him on the roster. He was on the team's practice squad until December, when Oakland poached him.

Since then, Olawale has been a regular roleplayer in the Raiders' offense. He's missed just six games since 2013.

Jamize brings more offensive firepower to the FB position than Keith Smith had. He's scored at least one touchdown in each of the last three seasons. He can be effective both running and receiving.

Through the trade, Dallas picks up the final year of Olawale's current contract. It calls for a $1.5 million base salary in 2018.

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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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