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Cowboys’ Available Free Agent Backup Quarterback Options

Brian Martin



Cowboys Headlines - Available Free Agent Backup Quarterback Options

The Dallas Cowboys thought they were set at the backup quarterback position with Kellen Moore, but an unfortunate injury now has the organization examining all their options for the right player to back up Tony Romo in 2016.

The Cowboys tried to bring in Nick Foles, but he decided to rejoin an Andy Reid coached team in the Kansas City Chiefs. They then tried to work out a trade with the Cleveland Browns for veteran quarterback Josh McCown, but the Browns were wanting an arm and a leg in return.

With the failure to bring in their top two choices, the Dallas Cowboys decided to see what they have in Jameill Showers and Dak Prescott. But don't for a second think that they are not looking at all of the options outside of the organization.

In fact, I think they're going to let Showers and Prescott play the first two preseason games and then possibly look at adding a veteran QB if they don't like what they see.

I for one am against giving way tradable assets for a backup QB or draft picks for that matter, so I decided to take a look at available quarterbacks that could be brought in relatively cheaply.

Here are some of the players that could be of interest to the Dallas Cowboys, and no Johnny Manziel or Tim Tebow are absolutely not on this list if you were wondering.

Cowboys Headlines - Cowboys' Available Free Agent Backup Quarterback Options 2TJ Yates

TJ Yates is personally one of my favorite available free agent quarterbacks. That probably has a lot to do with the fact that he is the one that I am the most familiar with having seen firsthand what he was able to accomplish with the Houston Texans when called upon.

Did you know as a rookie he led the Houston Texans to their first ever playoff win against the Cincinnati Bengals in 2012?

Since then, he's pretty much been regulated to backup duty with the Atlanta Falcons in 2014 and once again for a second time with the Texans in 2015. Unfortunately, he suffered a torn ACL injury in December of the 2015 season, which could explain his availability.

A healthy TJ Yates could be an intriguing backup QB option for the Dallas Cowboys.

Cowboys Headlines - Cowboys' Available Free Agent Backup Quarterback Options 3Michael Vick

I have already seen outcries that the Dallas Cowboys should bring in Michael Vick to be the insurance policy in case Tony Romo is once again injured.

It's pretty understandable that the most recognizable name among available quarterbacks gets linked to the Cowboys. It happens just about every time a well-known player is released or looking for work, but Michael Vick actually makes sense in a way.

He served admirably as Ben Roethlisberger's backup in 2015 and could do the same thing for the Cowboys as well. He has experience in the NFC East division and probably still has enough left in the tank to get the job done.

Personally, I'm a little indifferent as to whether or not I think Michael Vick would be a good backup QB for the Dallas Cowboys, but I would be on board with whatever decision they made.

Charlie WhitehurstCowboys Headlines - Cowboys' Available Free Agent Backup Quarterback Options 4

Charlie Whitehurst might just be the best looking available QB, which is why he is probably the arm candy of Grammy Award winning singer  Jewel.

He is familiar with playing a backup role having done so pretty much his entire NFL career. He has served as a backup QB for the Chargers twice, Seahawks, Titans, and most recently with the Indianapolis Colts in 2015.

Whitehurst spent the majority of his career as a member of the San Diego Chargers in Norv Turner's offense, so he would be familiar with the system that the Dallas Cowboys use offensively.

Whitehurst's familiarity with the Cowboys offensive scheme make him someone the Dallas Cowboys could look at to secure that backup QB position behind Tony Romo.

Cowboys Headlines - Cowboys' Available Free Agent Backup Quarterback Options 6Tarvaris Jackson

Tarvaris Jackson has served as Russell Wilson's backup quarterback in Seattle for the past three seasons, but an assault with a deadly weapon allocation against him could keep them off of the Dallas Cowboys radar.

I personally think the Cowboys have been reflected negatively in the media enough for bringing in players with troubled pasts, so I don't think Jackson will be worth the media headache he would bring to the organization.

Nevertheless, he is available and could probably be had on a cheap one year deal if the Dallas Cowboys deem him suitable as a backup QB.

Cowboys Headlines - Cowboys' Available Free Agent Backup Quarterback Options 7Matt Flynn

Matt Flynn has been a backup QB for nearly his entire NFL career, much like all the other players on this list.

Flynn has been a member of several teams in the NFL in some sort of capacity. He has been with the Packers twice, Seahawks, Raiders, Bills, Patriots, Jets, and the New Orleans Saints.

He did however get a chance to be the starter for the Seattle Seahawks, but was ultimately beaten out by Russell Wilson in his rookie season.

Flynn is a born and raised Texan, so he would probably welcome a return to his home state. Unfortunately for him, he is probably not sitting near the top of the Cowboys list of backup quarterbacks.

Do any of these backup QB's sound like good options for the Dallas Cowboys?

Now, you can probably understand why the Cowboys organization is willing to take the wait-and-see approach, while evaluating both Dak Prescott and Jameill Showers.

Please feel free to use the comments section below to share your thoughts and opinions on the possibility of adding any of these quarterbacks. Or share with all of us who you would like to see the Dallas Cowboys add to back up Tony Romo.

Level C2/C3 quadriplegic. College graduate with a bachelors degree in sports and health sciences-concentration sports management. Sports enthusiast. Dallas Cowboys fanatic. Lover of life with a glass half-full point of view.


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BREAKING: Dallas Cowboys Sign Free Agent Safety George Iloka

Jess Haynie



George Iloka

The Dallas Cowboys have reached a one-year agreement with Safety George Iloka, according to ESPN's Todd Archer. Iloka spent 2018 with the Vikings after six years with the Bengals.

He's started 79 of his 99 career games since being a fifth-round pick by Cincinnati in 2012. Iloka turns 29 years old next week.

Todd Archer on Twitter

The Cowboys have agreed to a one-year deal with safety George Iloka, according to a source. Iloka met with the Cowboys on Friday and was the third safety to meet with the club during the week along with Clayton Geathers and Eric Berry. The Cowboys have...

This isn't the safety that most Cowboys fans wanted. After over a year of pining for Earl Thomas, sights turned to Eric Berry after his free agent visit in Dallas last week.

However, it makes sense that Iloka would be attractive to the Cowboys. At 6'4" and 225 lbs, he fits the physical mold of what Defensive Backs Coach Kris Richard likes in his players. He also is younger than than Berry and Thomas without the same recent injury issues.

Iloka becomes one of many Boise St. products on Dallas' roster, joining Tyrone Crawford, DeMarcus Lawrence, Leighton Vander Esch, and others. He entered the league with college teammates Crawford and Kellen Moore, the Cowboys' new offensive coordinator, in 2012.

We'll have to wait and see how George Iloka fits into the current mix at safety with Jeff Heath and Xavier Woods. He spent most of 2018 as a backup with Minnesota, but Dallas will likely give him a chance to start.

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Dallas Cowboys

What to Expect from Dallas Cowboys Wide Receiver Group in 2019

John Williams



Amari Cooper

In a span of a week, the Dallas Cowboys have solidified their wide receiver group with the resigning of Tavon Austin to a one year deal and the signing of former Green Bay Packers Wide Receiver Randall Cobb. Despite the loss of Cole Beasley, the Cowboys have a created a really good group of receivers for Quarterback Dak Prescott to throw to.

Cobb joins a really nice group of players that includes incumbent starters on the outside in Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup as well as solid depth players in Austin, Allen Hurns, and Noah Brown. Throw in Cedric Wilson, the Dallas Cowboys sixth round pick from the 2018 NFL Draft and the Cowboys may have one of the deeper receiving corps in the NFL.

The question is, how will the Dallas Cowboys coaching staff delineate the roles?

Let's take a look.

Outside Receivers

As I mentioned before, the Dallas Cowboys are returning their top two options on the outside in Amari Cooper, who is the X wide receiver and Michael Gallup, the Z receiver. Both players will go into week one as the starters at their respective positions in two-wide receiver formations.

Despite some of the overthrows from Dak Prescott to Michael Gallup, Gallup had a really nice rookie season and got better as the year went along, even leading the Cowboys in receiving in the playoff loss to the Los Angeles Rams. In that game, Gallup recorded the first 100 yard game of his career. Sure, it was in an attempt to comeback by the Dallas Cowboys, but it is impressive nonetheless. His touchdown catch against the Seattle Seahawks the week before was clutch. The Cowboys needed that to take the lead at the end of the first half. 2018 was only the beginning for Michael Gallup. He showed an ability to win with a full offseason to work with Dak Prescott, their chemistry and connection should only improve.

As for Cooper, his presence was felt right away as the offense just looked different once he stepped on the field. It's no coincidence that Dak Prescott's two best career games in terms of passing yardage came with Cooper in 2018. He's such a threat that he opens up space for the rest of the wide receiver group. His route running, speed, ability to run after the catch make him a threat to score any time he's targeted.

Behind Cooper and Gallup, you have options in the event that one of them gets hurt. Allen Hurns, Tavon Austin, and Noah Brown are all players who took snaps on the outside for the Dallas Cowboys in 2018 and did so with effectiveness. Hurns best game of the year came just before the Cooper deal was made as he went for five receptions for 75 yards.

Tavon provided down field speed on several occasions and provides some gadget quality that the Dallas Cowboys love to have. Noah Brown is a player that the Dallas Cowboys love to deploy as a blocker in the running game. While it looked like he might get more run in the passing game in 2019, the depth additions will limit him again to a specialty role. If needed, though, he could be an option to take snaps on the outside as his big frame allows him to box out defensive backs down the field.

There will be snaps on the outside for someone when the Cowboys go to 11 personnel, because of Amari Cooper's ability to slide into the slot.

Slot Receiver

Obviously, the writing is on the wall with who the Dallas Cowboys are planning on deploying in the slot as things stand right now, and that's Randall Cobb.

While Cobb should be penciled in as the starter in the slot, I doubt that he's going to get 100% of the snaps there in 11 or 10 personnel groupings. Amari Cooper, Allen Hurns, Tavon Austin, Noah Brown, and Cedric Wilson could all push for playing time from the slot.

Last month, I wrote a piece about Allen Hurns and his effectiveness in the slot and why the Cowboys should feature him there. With Cobb coming off an injury laden season, the Cowboys would be wise to give some snaps to Hurns along with Tavon Austin.

In Jacksonville, Hurns was incredibly effective from the slot running posts, slants, and ins and outs. His size and route running made him an effective mismatch against linebackers, safeties, and cornerbacks alike. Remember, it wasn't long ago that Hurns had a 1,000 yard season with Blake Bortles at the helm.

Tavon Austin's quickness is an asset that could be very effective in the slot as well. Though he lacks size, he's a player that opposing defenses have to account for because of his ability to make big plays once the ball's in his hands.

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

The Cowboys haven't been shy about carrying seven wide receivers on their 53-man rosters and it's possible, though unlikely that they could do it again in 2018. As things stand now, I see Noah Brown and Cedric Wilson as the potential odd men out. Of course, this could all get reshuffled if the Dallas Cowboys use a top 100 pick on a wide receiver in the draft.

With Amari Cooper, Allen Hurns, Tavon Austin, and Randall Cobb only under contract through the 2019 season, the Dallas Cowboys would be wise to invest at the position despite the strength of the position in 2019.

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Dallas Cowboys

Report: Dallas Cowboys Set to Meet with Safety George Iloka

John Williams



Why Cowboys Should Acquire Recently Released S George Iloka

As the Dallas Cowboys continue the process of building a roster capable of taking them back to the playoffs, and hopefully to a Super Bowl, this next season, they’re bringing in another safety to try and strengthen their top 10 defense. This time it’s free agent safety George Iloka, formerly of the Minnesota Vikings.

Per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Dallas Cowboys are set to meet with

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

The #Cowboys are hosting former #Vikings and #Bengals safety George Iloka for a visit tomorrow, source said. They're still looking to add in the secondary.

It will be the third meeting this week that they’ve had with a veteran safety after hosting recently resigned Indianapolis’s colts Safety Clayton Geathers and former Kansas City Chiefs Safety Eric Berry.

The Cowboys feel really good about Xavier Woods at safety, but definitely could use some depth at the position as they head toward the 2019 NFL Draft.

Iloka is coming off a season where he was relegated to a reserve role for the Vikings. In five of the last six seasons, Iloka’s played all 16 games, and the one season he didn’t, he played 12. He has nine career interceptions, and has three seasons with more than 70 total tackles.

Back in August of last year, Brian Martin argued that the Dallas Cowboys should pursue Iloka after being released by the Cincinnati Bengals. He would play the strong or box safety role in the Cowboys defense if they were to come to an agreement.

Stay tuned for more Free Agency coverage from us here at

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