I see you walking with that extra spring in your step! You’re beaming from ear to ear! And we all know why…
Dallas Cowboys football is back, baby!
The Dallas Cowboys got things started in the 2015 preseason last night against the San Diego Super Chargers (that song is so awesome). It was a fun contest and a great glimpse into what the 2015 season is going to hold for us.
That 2015 season is 30 days away. We’ve been counting down to kickoff here at Inside The Star since 99 days till kickoff with the best Cowboy to wear each corresponding jersey number. The countdown continues today as we, with some Cowboys football in our tummies, discuss the Greatest 30 in Dallas Cowboys History!
The Following Players Have All Worn 30 For The Dallas Cowboys:
It seems fitting that on the day after the Cowboys played what could possibly have been their last game in San Diego (the Chargers are widely speculated to be moving to Los Angeles as early as 2016) that the player we are highlighting was actually offered a contract by them.
He ultimately signed with the Cowboys, don’t get me wrong, but this was a time before the NFL/AFL merger. So after going undrafted in 1965 Daniel Edward Reeves’s services were sought after by both the Dallas Cowboys and San Diego Chargers.
During his time at the University of South Carolina Dan Reeves was actually a quarterback. When he got to Dallas it only made sense to play him at… safety? Yes, the great Tom Landry put Reeves in the defensive backfield to see what he was made of.
After training camp injuries decimated the depth of the halfback position it only made sense to take the former quarterback turned safety and hand him the ball! Welcome to the running back position, Dan.
1966: Arrival Of Dan Reeves And The Cowboys
Tom Landry was one of the most innovative people to ever dial up the Xs and Os on a chalkboard. Some of the things that he implemented are still used in the NFL today and will be forever. Some of the things that he implemented… didn’t make a lot of sense.
While he was looking for more speed in the backfield Tom Landry moved future Pro Football hall of Fame cornerback to the spot. When Renfro was injured against the G-Men, Dan Reeves stepped in and everything changed forever.
In 1966 Dan Reeves had 757 rushing yards, 8 rushing touchdowns, 557 receiving yards, and 8 receiving touchdowns… all career highs. He played valiantly as the Cowboys finally found their form and marched all the way to the NFL Championship Game. The victor would go on to play the Kansas City Chiefs in the first ever Super Bowl, so needless to say there was a lot on the line. The Cowboys ultimately lost to the Green Bay Packers, but their presence in the game cemented their place as one of the elite teams in the National Football League.
Dan Reeves Runs Through The 60s
Number 30 would have a similarly great 1967 as he had 603 rushing yards, 5 rushing touchdowns, 490 receiving yards, and 6 receiving touchdowns. Dan had two notable games that season as in week 13 against the Philadelphia Eagles he ran in a touchdown, caught a pass for a touchdown, and even threw a touchdown! Talk about a hat trick. Reeves also set a team record when he rushed for 4 scores in a single game against the Atlanta Falcons.
The Cowboys found themselves once again in the NFL Championship Game against the Green Bay Packers and lost in one of the most iconic games in NFL History… The Ice Bowl.
1968 wasn’t as friendly to Reeves as four games into the season he suffered a right knee injury and missed the rest of the year. This injury, while obviously devastating, is arguably one of the greatest things to ever happen to Dan Reeves. Coach Landry began to utilize Reeves as a player/coach while he molded his new running back corps (which included players like Calvin Hill and Duane Thomas).
Dan Reeves served in his player/coach role from 1968 all the way through the rest of his playing days in Dallas (Reeves retired from playing after the 1972 contest).
As a player he amassed 1,990 rushing yards, 1,693 receiving yards, and 42 total touchdowns. The Dallas Cowboys made the playoffs every year while he was on the roster, and he was a member of the first World Champion squad that the Dallas Cowboys fielded in 1971.
In 1977 Dan Reeves was named the offensive coordinator of the Dallas Cowboys. He had served, as a protégé of Coach Landry’s and this was a move, which, at the time, seemed natural and inevitable. The Cowboys won their second Super Bowl in franchise history that season, giving Dan Reeves his first (and what would be only) ring as a member of a coaching staff.
Reeves would coordinate the Cowboys offense all the way through the 1980 season, before becoming the then youngest head coach in the NFL… taking over the Denver Broncos. Reeves and his staff would come across one of the finest quarterbacks to ever play the game, John Elway, in 1983. Reeves took the Broncos to the Super Bowl for the second, third, and fourth times in franchise history in 1986, 1987, and 1989… losing all three games.
The Giants called upon his services in 1993 where Coach Reeves enjoyed a four year run, but it was in 1997 when he reached the Falcons that he found serious success again. Dan Reeves would take the Falcons to the Super Bowl in his first year as their head coach, the first and only Super Bowl appearance in Atlanta’s history, and ultimately lost the game to his former team… John Elway and the Denver Broncos.
#30: Dan Reeves
Dan Reeves exemplified all of the qualities that people affiliate with Tom Landry. Considering that Reeves served as a coaching apprentice of Landry, it was never shocking to see him have success at a high level.
Dan Reeves the player was quite extraordinary as he was one of the premier running backs on the Dallas Cowboys roster in the early to late 60s. He helped them establish an identity of running the ball, and his contributions as a player/coach were a key element in the Cowboys winning two Super Bowls in the 1970s.
Among all things Dan Reeves is remembered as an outstanding player and an incredible head coach. I implore you to remember Dan Reeves as one more thing – the Greatest 30 in Dallas Cowboys History.
Check back tomorrow to find out who the Greatest 29 in Dallas Cowboys History is!
Malik McDowell Is Well Worth The Risk For The Dallas Cowboys
The Dallas Cowboys are reportedly brining defensive lineman Malik McDowell into The Star this week for a visit, as they decide whether or not to potentially sign him for the 2019 season.
McDowell is a former second round pick of the Seattle Seahawks, who fell to day two because of what scouts call "off the field" or "character" concerns. McDowell did not last long with Seahawks, as he was released in 2017 following an ATV accident in which he reportedly suffered "extensive brain and eye trauma" according to Charles Robinson.
None of us know much about who Malik McDowell is as a person, or what concerns their really should be with his health. But what I do know is that on tape at Michigan State, McDowell was a top 5-10 player in the 2017 draft class. He was a stud, and has the traits to continue to be a stud in the NFL.
The 2017 NFL Draft is chock full of talented, athletic, and productive defensive linemen. While most of the draft pundits have focused on EDGE rushers thus far, the defensive tackle class also possesses some of this year's top NFL prospects. Arguably the best of those defensive tackles is Michigan State's Malik McDowell.
Back in 2017 I wrote a full scouting report on McDowell, detailing why he earned such a high grade on my board. McDowell is a versatile linemen who is explosive off the ball, powerful and rangy against the run, and a skilled pass rusher who plays with a high motor. What more could you really ask for?
"McDowell is a patient pass rusher at times, setting up the blocker how he likes and then beating them with ease. McDowell’s ability to swipe hands off helps him greatly, but his quick swim is his most effective pass rush move.
On this play he uses that swim to perfection, forcing the center to power down to the right before swimming back to the other side."
Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.
When the Spartans went to a three man pass rushing front, McDowell moved to the EDGE often and made plays with his quick, active hands and impressive swim move. He was much more impressive on the interior, however, and could be a direct replacement for David Irving as an explosive and powerful 3-technique for the Cowboys.
Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.
I love that the Cowboys are bringing McDowell in for a free agent visit. His price will likely be low, as he is yet to play in an NFL game over the last two years, but his ceiling remains very high if he is healthy. It's rare for a player with his college production, natural ability, and measurables to completely fail in the NFL.
Maybe all McDowell needs is a second chance to get his head right and prove that he belongs in the league. Maybe he flames out quickly and can't get on the field due to "off the field" stuff. Or, maybe he simply isn't healthy enough to contribute as an NFL player. Regardless, for the price he'll likely command, McDowell is well worth the risk if the Cowboys are willing to take it.
Though Not A Direct Beasley Replacement, Randall Cobb Would Bring Value To Cowboys’ Offense
When the news broke Monday that veteran wide receiver Randall Cobb was visiting the Dallas Cowboys, most immediately assumed he would be a logical replacement for the departed Cole Beasley.
When you take a look at the film and each of their skillsets, however, you quickly see this is likely not the case.
While Cobb would be able to play in the slot as a receiver for the Cowboys if he signs, his value extends much further than just a slot receiver. Where Beasley makes his mark with precise route running, short area quickness, and 3rd down reliability, Cobb is much more of a threat after the catch. He's not the route runner that Beasley is, and really isn't an upgrade over Beasley as a receiver, but Cobb would be able to help the Cowboys' become more diverse in their offensive schemes.
Similar to Tavon Austin, Randall Cobb can be used in pre snap motion and jet-sweep packages, as well as a traditional running back. A college quarterback, Cobb's versatility is what makes him so attractive to NFL teams. Cobb would actually fit more of the Lance Dunbar "scat back" role of sorts for the Cowboys than that of the Cole Beasley slot receiver role. His versatility, however, allows him to carve out a lane within the offense which they haven't quite had before.
Another area Cobb could help the Cowboys is when the play breaks down. With experience in the Packers offense playing with arguably the greatest improviser we've ever seen in Aaron Rodgers, Cobb would be able to help Dak Prescott down the field when he breaks the pocket and the play is off schedule.
So often last season we talked about how the Cowboys offense is reliant on remaining on schedule, staying in front of the chains and not having to force the ball downfield. Unleashing the Mississippi State version of Dak Prescott, where he can improvise and use his legs to create big plays, tends to be when this offense is at its best, however.
Randall Cobb won't be a Pro Bowler if the Cowboys sign him, and depending on the money he receives, it might not even be a lock that he makes the final roster. But Cobb would be an exciting addition to a Cowboys offense which has lacked "creativity" over the last few seasons, and is looking to reinvent themselves to a certain extent.
A receiving corps headlined by Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup, with versatile weapons such as Cobb and Tavon Austin behind them, is a pretty good one to head into draft day with.
Signing Cobb would keep the Cowboys from "needing" to take a wide receiver early in the draft, and would allow them to easily shed Allen Hurns if a receiving weapon did fall to them at 58th overall.
Should Cowboys Inquire About Trading for 49ers DL Solomon Thomas?
When it comes to making trades, the Dallas Cowboys are typically the buyer and not the seller. They proved that last season when they acquired Tavon Austin, Jamize Olawale, and Jihad Ward via trade and could be looking do the same once again this offseason. That's why today I want to talk about the Cowboys putting in a call to the San Francisco 49ers to inquire about potentially trading for Solomon Thomas.
New 49ers Defensive Line Coach Kris Kocurek is rumored to be evaluating Solomon Thomas' film in order to determine his fit and future with the organization moving forward. This is no easy task. In his two years in the league they've tried Thomas at DE and DT, but unfortunately the former No. 3 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft has yet to find his footing at either position.
Being a man without a position doesn't bode well for Solomon Thomas, especially after the 49ers acquired Defensive End Dee Ford from the Kansas City Chiefs last week via trade. The 49ers are suddenly stacked along the defensive line. That's not all though, things could actually get worse for Thomas.
To further complicate matters, the 49ers could use their second overall pick in the upcoming 2019 NFL Draft on the either Nick Bosa or Quinnen Williams. If that's what indeed happens, someone is going to be the odd man out. If you haven't guessed it yet, I think that player could be Solomon Thomas.
As a former high first-round draft pick, Thomas would count $7,678,468 against the salary cap in 2019 and $8,958,213 in 2020. That's probably more than the 49ers want to pay for a rotational/backup defensive lineman. And cutting him this season would create $16.6 million in dead money, so a trade is the logical solution.
With all that in mind, it wouldn't surprise me if San Francisco put Solomon Thomas on the trade block any day now. He is only two years into his four-year rookie deal and comes with a fifth-year option as a former first-round draft pick. That means if a team does trade for him they have him under contract for essentially three more years.
If you add all of this up, it makes a lot of sense for the Dallas Cowboys. They need defensive line help and Solomon Thomas needs a fresh start. The Cowboys would get a young versatile defensive lineman and the 49ers get to dump his contract while also receiving some compensation in return. It's a win-win for all parties concerned.
I know what you're thinking though. What would the Cowboys have to give up in the trade? Well, it might not be as much as you think.
Fortunately, Thomas' failure to make an impact his first two years in the NFL favor the buyer, in this case the Dallas Cowboys. He has only four career quarterback sacks, three of which came in his rookie season. Stats of course don't always tell the entire story, but game film does. Unfortunately for Thomas, he can't escape his poor play.
I believe it wouldn't take more than a 2019 fourth-round draft pick to get Solomon Thomas away from the 49ers. Remember, just last season the New England Patriots sent a third-round draft pick to San Francisco and received Offensive Tackle Trent Brown and the fifth-round pick in return. Brown was a more proven player and was in the last year of his contract.
I don't know about you, but I kind of like the idea of Solomon Thomas in a Dallas Cowboys uniform. If anybody can tap into his potential, Rod Marinelli can. Giving up a 2019 fourth-round pick is well worth the gamble in my opinion.
Do you think the Cowboys should inquire about trading for Solomon Thomas?
Dallas Cowboys1 week ago
5 Realistic Free Agents Cowboys Should Sign Before the Draft
NFL Draft6 days ago
Hypothetical La’el Collins Trade Could Recoup Cowboys a 2019 1st-Round Pick
Dallas Cowboys6 days ago
Cowboys Show Interest in Browns DE Emmanuel Ogbah
Player News6 days ago
Chiefs Release Eric Berry, Should Cowboys Be Interested?
Dallas Cowboys2 weeks ago
REPORT: Cowboys Keeping OL Joe Looney, WR Tavon Austin, WR Allen Hurns in 2019
Dallas Cowboys2 weeks ago
Should the Cowboys Use Their 2020 First Round Pick in 2019?
NFL Draft2 weeks ago
7-Round Dallas Cowboys Mock Draft: Post-Combine Edition
Dallas Cowboys6 days ago
BREAKING: Dallas Cowboys Sign DL Christian Covington