Connect with us

Star Blog

Cowboys CTK: Mike Gaechter Sprints To #27

RJ Ochoa

Published

on

Cowboys Blog - Cowboys CTK: Mike Gaechter Sprints To #27 1

Back in high school I ran for student body president. My campaign centered around one main idea – if elected I would abolish Mondays from the school week and ensure three day weekends for everyone.

Unfortunately I lost and we all have to get the week going on Monday. This can be good news though, and today it means that we find ourselves 24 hours closer to the 2015 regular season. In fact, exactly four weeks from today you’ll be procrastinating work and figuring out your dinner plans for Monday Night Football!

One day before that the Cowboys will begin their quest for Super Bowl 50 against the New York Giants. That moment is 27 days away and we’re going to continue our Countdown To Kickoff series highlighting the Greatest 27 in Dallas Cowboys History.

The Following Players Have All Worn 27 For The Dallas Cowboys:

  • Courtney Brown, S
  • Mario Edwards, CB
  • Thomas Everett, FS
  • Ron Fellows, CB
  • Eric Frampton, CB
  • Mike Gaechter, CB/SS
  • Eddie George, RB
  • Tommy Haynes, CB
  • Keylon Kincade, RB
  • Singor Mobley, CB
  • Akwasi Owusu-Ansah, CB
  • Curvin Richards, RB
  • Bill Thomas, RB
  • Greg Tremble, CB
  • J.J. Wilcox*, S
  • C.J. Wilson, CB

*Active player on the Dallas Cowboys roster

The Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony took place a little over a week ago out in Canton, Ohio. Among the members of the Class of 2015 was one of the finest centers to ever play the game, Minnesota Vikings Center Mick Tingelhoff.

The newest bust in Canton wasn’t even drafted in 1962, but still managed to put together a Hall of Fame resume. There were two other players that went undrafted that would find their way into the NFL… and specifically the Dallas Cowboys.

In 1962 The Greatest 34 in Dallas Cowboys History, Cornell Green, was signed to America’s Team after never having played football. The other? Well he was a University of Oregon Duck who ran track with another Pro Football Hall of Famer, Mel Renfro, that would go on to become the Greatest 27 in Dallas Cowboys History.

Mike Gaechter

Cowboys Blog - Cowboys CTK: Mike Gaechter Sprints To #27

Undrafted rookies can go on to do amazing things in the NFL. Take a look at current Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, he went undrafted and has become one of the top tier gunslingers in football.

When the Dallas Cowboys signed Mike Gaechter as an undrafted free agent in 1962 they saw results right away, specifically in Week 5 of his rookie year the Cowboys hosted the division rival Philadelphia Eagles at the Cotton Bowl.

Late in the fourth quarter Philly QB King Hill dropped back and threw towards the endzone. ‘Ol Mike Gaechter picked it off and ran it back - 100 yards for the score.

Gaechter The Strong Safety

The track background that fellow Duck Mel Renfro had helped him transition well to the cornerback position in the NFL. While track teammates at Oregon, the scampering Mike Gaechter was more cut out for the strong safety spot.

In 1963 he made the move and quickly developed a reputation as one of the more feared safeties in the league. In fact, in the 1966 NFL Championship Game Gaechter laid some serious wood on Boyd Dowler of the Green Bay Packers. Two weeks later in Super Bowl I Dowler was limited which allowed Max McGee to help lead the Pack to victory… despite a raging hangover (that’s a story for another day!).

#27: Mike Gaechter

The Dallas defense of the 1960s had 108 games influenced by the skills of Mike Gaechter. His 21 career interceptions are good for 13th in franchise history, and his 100-yard interception return was the longest in franchise history until Bryan McCann broke it in 2010.

Mike Gaechter helped the Dallas Cowboys last until the 1970s when the NFL merger happened and they really established themselves as one of the league’s most elite teams. His contributions are enough to establish Mike Gaechter as the Greatest 27 in Dallas Cowboys History.

Check back tomorrow to find out who the Greatest 26 in Dallas Cowboys History is!

 

UPDATE:

Tragically Mike Gaechter died as a result of heart failure on Monday, August 17th, at his home in Dallas. All of our thoughts and prayers here at Inside The Star are with his family during this time.


Want to share your opinions on who should be featured on our Countdown To Kickoff? Email me at rjochoa@insidethestar.com or Tweet @rjochoa.

Tell us what you think about "Cowboys CTK: Mike Gaechter Sprints To #27" in the comments below. You can also email me at RJ.Ochoa@SlantSports.com, or Tweet to me at @RJOchoa!



I like long walks on the beach, mystery novels, no just kidding those suck. The Dallas Cowboys were put on this earth for us all to love and appreciate. I do that 24/7/365. I also love chicken parmesan. Let's roll. @RJOchoa if you wanna shout!

Advertisement
Comments

Star Blog

Tyron Smith Named Most “Underpaid Veteran” On Dallas Cowboys

Kevin Brady

Published

on

Dallas Cowboys Player Profile: T #77 Tyron Smith 1

Counting the pockets of Cowboys star players has become a favorite activity of the national media this offseason, as everyone tries to figure out how Dallas will structure the deals for their young players over the course of the next year.

While trying to figure out what the new deals will look like, it's worth reflecting on how well the team did on some of their past negotiations. The Ringer released an article this week naming the most underpaid veteran on each NFL roster, with Tyron Smith earning that honor for the Cowboys.

Smith, who signed his extension with the team back in 2014, is under the deal until the 2024 season. That 8 year extension was lucrative at the time for sure, but as the salary cap rises and other offensive tackles have gotten paid, it looks more like a bargain deal for Dallas by the second.

"A long contract is a bad deal for an elite player in a league in which revenue grows handily. The salary cap was $133 million in 2014, but it’s $188.2 million for 2019. So while the Cowboys have 41.5 percent more money to spend, Smith hasn’t had a raise in five seasons. The Cowboys essentially locked up one of the best tackles of his generation for his entire career."

When put like this, you can see just what a steal of a contract the Cowboys signed Tyron Smith for. Smith is inked for the entirety of the prime of his career, and has very little leverage for a holdout given how many years still remain on this deal.

On the field, Tyron Smith remains one of the best left tackles in all of football, even if back issues have forced him to miss some time over the last two seasons. Smith should remain a top contributor for the Cowboys for at least a few more years, all of which will come at a bargain for a Cowboys team looking to execute some salary cap gymnastics next offseason.



Continue Reading

Star Blog

PFF Ranks Cowboys Run Defense 13th In The NFL

Kevin Brady

Published

on

Leighton Vander Esch, Jaylon Smith

The Cowboys duo of young linebackers took the NFL by storm in 2018.

Rookie Leighton Vander Esch and former second round pick Jaylon Smith played well above expectations, as for the first time in years Dallas did not face a significant drop off in defensive production when Sean Lee was out and injured.

These young linebackers are the cornerstone of a run defense which should be among the league's best going forward, and Pro Football Focus agrees. Well, somewhat agrees.

PFF ranked all 32 run defenses heading into the 2019 season, slotting the Cowboys 13th overall. Better than half the league, but not quite top 10.

https://twitter.com/PFF_Cowboys/status/1151155572059717632

PFF's reasoning behind this ranking certainly makes sense, as they credit the young linebacker duo without mentioning much of what will be in front of them helping to stop opposing running games.

"The Cowboys’ run defense begins and ends with the league’s best young linebacker duo. Leighton Vander Esch ranked third in run-stop percentage as a rookie while Jaylon Smith checked in at 29th."

The playoff loss in Los Angeles has left a bad taste about the Cowboys' interior defensive line in a lot of mouths, but I do think they've improved the unit this offseason. Signing Christian Covington and drafting Trysten Hill was a nice start to do so, but having Maliek Collins healthy and Antwaun Woods back for a full season will also go a long way.

Interestingly enough, two of the Cowboys divisional foes came in ranked above them on this list. Washington was slotted as the 12th best run defense, while Philadelphia was placed at number 8. Both teams' units deserve respect, of course, but this further highlights how difficult it could be to run the ball in the NFC East this season.

While I hate simply throwing this term around, analytics suggest that passing is what wins games in the NFL. Passing and stopping the pass, I should say.

With strong run defenses in their division, the Cowboys will need to maximize their passing game efficiency if they want to repeat as NFC East champions.



Continue Reading

Star Blog

3 Reasons Amari Cooper is Primed for an All-Pro Season

Matthew Lenix

Published

on

3 Reasons Amari Cooper is Primed for an All-Pro Season

Amari Cooper changed life for the entire Dallas Cowboys offense in 2018. Finally, Quarterback Dak Prescott has the number one option at wide receiver he's desperately needed since his rookie campaign. Now, after half a season and multiple playoff games under his belt in Dallas, Cooper is set to have a monster year. Here are three specific reasons why.

1. Culture

Head Coach Jason Garrett has established a certain way of doing things in Dallas since taking over in 2010. His constant search for the RKG or "Right Kinda Guy" as he puts it has the culture in the locker room at a very positive and productive place. As criticized as he is, justifiably or not, he has his team all on the same page. This is something Cooper has been trying to find since he entered the league in 2015. An organization with the right mindset in order for him to perform and maximize his skill set. After being traded to Dallas, Cooper opened up in November about being unhappy during his days in Oakland.

"I wasn't really happy in Oakland or anything like that. But when I sat and thought about it [Monday} night, I thought about the fact that they traded me away. I don't know how to feel about it," Cooper told Yahoo Sports.

This may seem small to others considering these players make millions of dollars right? Well, it doesn't change the fact that they're human. When you feel unappreciated you don't play to the best of your abilities. Shortly after the trade, Cooper talked about how he's been different since putting a star on his helmet. "I feel like it did change me, as far as having that chip on my shoulder. Not that I wasn't passionate before, but playing with more passion, trying to intentionally have fun out there. It definitely has changed me, in terms of me going out there and just having fun with it," Cooper said. A change of scenery was just what the doctor ordered for Cooper and the Cowboys.

2. The other weapons around him

The Cowboys aren't just Amari Cooper or bust at the wide receiver position. Michael Gallup and Randall Cobb provide more challenges for defenses on a weekly basis. Gallup has firmly locked down the number two spot on the depth chart. It took a while for him to establish chemistry with Dak Prescott, as they would misfire on several big plays during the first half of the season. Nonetheless, by seasons end things started to pick up, and he finished with 33 receptions for 507 yards and 2 touchdowns. In the playoffs, he scored a touchdown in the Cowboys Wild Card win over Seattle. The next week against the Rams he performed well even in defeat, with 6 receptions for 119 yards. He's got speed, size, and versatility. Now with a full season and two games of playoff experience under his belt, I look for even more production from Gallup, as a possible breakout star.

Randall Cobb is a much-needed upgrade in the slot for the Cowboys. Unlike former receiver Cole Beasley, Cobb can line up inside or outside. Giving new Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore a bigger bag of tricks at his disposal. Now, he can lineup Cooper inside or outside and play with a plethora of different looks, keeping defenses off balance because of the uncertainty of how the Cowboys will attack through the air.

Then, of course, there's Ezekiel Elliott. The two-time rushing champion is the tone-setter on offense and dictates how defenses will attack. With Cooper being such a threat in the air you basically have to pick your poison. 8-9 man fronts against the run can make you vulnerable to play action down the field or quick slants with Cooper's exceptional route running. The more productive Elliott is the more honest it keeps opposing defenses, opening up more opportunities in the passing game. Averaging 101.2 yards per game for his career, second all-time to Hall of Famer Jim Brown, Elliott can make create even more opportunities for Cooper in 2019 with a full season of playing time together.

3. Motivation

Amari Cooper is currently looking to sign a long-term deal with the Cowboys. Preferably, both sides would like to get this deal done before the season starts considering he's in the last year of his rookie contract that is set to pay him 13.9 million in 2019. However, it isn't just a new deal that motivates Cooper heading into the new season.

"It's kind of a weird situation, just being that I've never been in this situation before, talking about a contract. But also, I'm under a fifth-year option, so I'm not too familiar with it. I really don't ask my agent many questions. I'm not really worried about it that much. I'm more focused on actually playing and really earning the respect and then the contract," Cooper said.

Being motivated by earning respect is a very mature approach from Cooper. Now, add that to the fact that I'm sure he wants to firmly put his name alongside Julio Jones, Antonio Brown, DeAndre Hopkins, Odell Beckham Jr, and Michael Thomas as the best receivers in the game, you have a fully motivated number one option heading into the new season.

Amari Cooper has already made three pro bowls, but now there's another level for him to reach. In just nine games last year with the Cowboys he caught 53 passes for 725 yards and 6 touchdowns. Also, he caught another 13 on 18 targets in the playoffs for 171 yards and a score. He's in the right culture, he has a number of other weapons around him and he has multiple reasons to be motivated heading in the new season. With a full offseason of building chemistry with Dak Prescott, I see Cooper taking that leap to the All-Pro level in 2019.



Continue Reading



Enjoy 40% commissions on officially licensed products as a FanPrint affiliate. You can even make your own, fully licensed Cowboys and player designs! Get started here

Trending