Could Being a Former Falcon Help CB Deante Burton’s Future w/ Cowboys?

Since the middle of the 2019 season, Cornerback Deante Burton has been trying to find a regular role with the Dallas Cowboys. While he doesn’t feel like a roster favorite currently, could Burton’s history with the Atlanta Falcons and new Defensive Coordinator Dan Quinn work in his favor?

After a college career at Kansas State playing wide receiver, Burton went undrafted in 2017 and signed as a free agent with the Falcons while Quinn was their head coach. Known for liking bigger defensive backs, Quinn immediately converted the 6’2, 205 Deante to a cornerback.

Spending his rookie year on Atlanta’s practice squad, Burton returned jn 2018 and was released at final cuts. He was claimed off waivers by Green Bay (then coached by Mike McCarthy) but released after two inactive games. The Falcons re-signed him to their practice squad immediately.

That was Deante’s life for over two seasons, bouncing between the bottom of rosters and practice squads with Atlanta, Green Bay, Houston, and Indianapolis. But when the Cowboys signed Burton off the Colts’ practice squad in November it gave him his most stable job thus far in the NFL.

Burton finished 2019 as a reserve corner for Dallas and then returned in 2020 to mostly live on the practice squad. Deante was called up for two games last year under the modified rules due to the COVID-10 pandemic.

Returning for another opportunity in 2021, Burton still has the intriguing size and even some experience now throughout his various stops. But now age is a factor as Deante turns 27 next week; a major disadvantage compared to younger prospects the Cowboys are taking to camp.

But outside of a few rookies, Burton has an advantage now of having once been a handpicked project for Dan Quinn. Could that reunion give Deante an edge over some other prospects for the bottom of the Cowboys roster?

The current numbers at cornerback aren’t friendly. You could already argue that five Cowboys CBs are locks to make the team: Trevon Diggs, Kelvin Joseph, Anthony Brown, Jourdan Lewis, and Nahshon Wright. Plus there’s second-year prospects Reggie Robinson and special teams ace C.J. Goodwin to account for.

Burton finds himself in a tough spot with veterans like Maurice Canady and Rashard Robinson, all hoping to force their way onto the right side of the cut line.

Given his size, perhaps Deante could get a look at safety? There’s way less competition there and guys like Jayron Kearse and Darian Thompson aren’t that different from Burton; veterans just hoping they can outlast younger talent to fill out the depth chart.

Having only appeared in 10 games during his four seasons, Deante Burton certainly doesn’t have much experience to mitigate his age. But if he’s developed his game since those humble beginnings in Atlanta, could Burton once again catch the eye of Dan Quinn and extend his stay with the Cowboys?

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. It is a sign of questionable coaching when a new coach brings in a bunch of players who they knew elsewhere.

  2. Despite his size and his history with Dan Quinn, Deonte Burton has little or no chance to make the team. He has proved in four years that he is not capable of making the adjustment from receiver to db with different team. Time to get a job somewhere else, he is just taking the place of a younger player,

  3. I’d rather see TRUE coaching time and effort be put into Reggie Robinson III. I’m really pulling for him to make the team and be a difference maker on the team!

  4. Even though I know it’s just probably a rumor, You can’t help but see the striking resemblance. It’s not hard to see it. Both are men, two arms, two legs, even two eyeballs! It’s a matter of record they have spent a lot of time in the same towns at the same time. Yep, we might be looking at a brazen case of nepotism! Do they think a little name change can fool a laser focused Cowboys fan! Not a chance partner!

  5. He obviously doesn’t have Dan Quinn on his side, if Dan Quinn liked him so much then he would still be with the falcons, but he wasn’t, Dan Quinn already cut him 2 or more times from the falcons, and he didn’t last long with Mike Mccarthy either, so if anything he needs to be prepared to get cut again!! With us already having players like Diggs, Joseph, Brown, Lewis, Wright, Robinson and Goodwin, all of which are better than Burton, there’s no way Burton makes this team!! I’d take every one of those players ahead of Burton…. I’d even take Rashard Robinson and Maurice Canady over Burton, so that’s 9 other corners better than him trying to make this team…. He has no chance!! And to be honest, I don’t even think Rashard Robinson or Canady will make this team either!! I think the top 5 will make it for sure and I think Reggie Robinson will be Dan Quinns new project, cause he already switched him back to corner and had high praise for him this offseason, so I don’t see Dan Quinn talking good about him and switching him back to corner just to let him go!! And then Cj Goodwin will make the team too just because of how good he is on special teams!! So that’s 7 corners already!! It’s hard seeing them go with that many players at corner let alone going deeper at the position!! So like I said, I don’t think Burton, Rashard Robinson or Canady make this team!! But that’s just my opinion, who knows, I could be wrong!!

  6. Unfortunately, no, Burton’s history with Falcons will not help him. I must agree with Cowboys fan Burton, Canady, and Rashard R. will not last long in camp. Diggs, Lewis, Brown, and the two rookies are locks. Reggie R III will likely outperform those other vets and has more upside. Goodwin is special teams ace and other special team spots will come from LBs, Safeties, and WRs.

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