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Cowboys Minicamp: Day-2 First Team OL Features J. Cooper at LG

Sean Martin



Cowboys Minicamp: Day-2 First Team OL Features J. Cooper at LG 2

The Dallas Cowboys took a big step towards putting their perceived best five offensive linemen on the field at Wednesday's second day of minicamp, as 2016 free agent acquisition Jonathan Cooper was finally given the start at left guard.

The Cowboys are entering their first season since 2009 without Doug Free as their starting right tackle, which prompted them to move projected LG La'el Collins to Free's RT spot. This has left Chaz Green (once the leading candidate to replace Free and allow Collins to start again at guard), Joe Looney, OT Emmett Cleary, and Jonathan Cooper as Dallas' depth to find an answer at LG.

Jon Machota on Twitter

First-team offensive line on Day 2 of minicamp: LT-Tyron Smith, LG-Jonathan Cooper, C-Travis Frederick, RG-Zack Martin, RT-La'el Collins

Jonathan Cooper is by far the sexiest name on this list, as the former first round pick could resurrect his career by playing in between first round selections and Pro Bowlers Tyron Smith and Travis Frederick.

Cooper has obviously not lived up to his draft status as the Cardinals' seventh overall pick in 2013, breaking his fibula in his first preseason to start his NFL career. Injuries would be the story for Jonathan Cooper with the Cardinals before he was traded to the Patriots and later released.

Cowboys Minicamp: Day-2 First Team OL Features J. Cooper at LG

Most recently, Cooper was seen starting three games for the Browns in 2016 before being released in December and signed the next month by the Cowboys. Our Staff Writer Kevin Brady picked up with evaluating Cooper's tape in Cleveland and found plenty of positives.

There is little doubt that Dallas presents the best chance for Cooper to turn around his pro football career, re-signed this season initially for depth but now working as a starter - a move that feels long overdue at this point in the offseason for Cowboys Nation.

Cleary had his limited flashes at LT in 2016, and Green has reportedly looked solid at a brand new position inside, but Cooper is a natural scheme fit to block in space at LG and propel the Cowboys' running game to an entirely new level with Ezekiel Elliott in 2017.

Bryan Broaddus reviewed Jonathan Cooper in his first minicamp practice at LG - having previously seen him at center during OTAs - and had this to say:

"Jonathan Cooper took the majority of snaps at left guard with the first offense. I didn’t notice any major problems technique-wise..."

Since the Space Cowboys have come together as the consensus best offensive line in the NFL, this current offseason has likely brought the most uncertainty to the unit with changes at two positions. Assuming for a second the Cowboys feel certain about La'el Collins returning to his college position of tackle, Jonathan Cooper should get his shot to be a part of this special group as the Dallas Cowboys' starting left guard - a spot that now belongs to him as of the start of minicamp.

Cowboys Minicamp: Day-2 First Team OL Features J. Cooper at LG 1

Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Cowboys offensive line coming out of this reshuffling as their best ever incarnation for this young and loaded offense to take advantage of? This is a very real possibility, and one that opposing defensive coordinators around the league should already be losing sleep over.

Tell us what you think about "Cowboys Minicamp: Day-2 First Team OL Features J. Cooper at LG" 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.

  • Kevin Black

    I have to be honest, I’m both thrilled and concerned about Cooper playing LG. There have been discussions about his injuries robbing him of his mobility. While playing guard doesn’t exactly give you visions of nimble athletes, Dallas likes to employ pulls with their line, especially their guards. If Cooper is unable to move well in space, something that WAS a part of his game when he was drafted, it will cause some creative work on Linehan’s part to solve his pulling game.

    I’ll be quite interested in watching Cooper play in the preseason to try and tell if he’s able to handle all the duties the Cowboys expect of him.

    • ThePsychodad69

      Hard to look through a window and know what’s going on inside, so far the scoutscoaches have done a hell of a job with what they have in front of them.
      Just like real life, piss in one hand and wish in the other, which one fills up first. And let’s all enjoy what we have not what we hope for.

      • ThePsychodad69

        Marinelli has been making silk purses out of sows ears since he got here, give him some silk and let’s see what he does with it.

        If Garrett built the Oline in his image in 3yrs what makes you think it’s going to stop, I’m a fan of the ‘RHG’ and it took a while, but when I finally saw the ‘Process in writing it made sense, 3yrs to 5yrs and can’t wait to see the next 10. Garrett could be Jerry’s fadora for another decade.

        All hail the red headed genius known as (‘RHG’) ftom here on.

        Saw him speak at Princeton his 1st year as Coach, he is a motivator. And his Process is working.

Player News

Free Agent WR Allen Hurns Plans to Sign With Cowboys

Brian Martin



Free Agent WR Allen Hurns Plans to Sign With Cowboys

It looks as if the Dallas Cowboys will be adding yet another wide receiver through free agency. According to sources, Allen Hurns plans on signing with the Cowboys.

Josina Anderson on Twitter

WR Allen Hurns just told me, "I'm going to sign with Dallas." #Cowboys

This is a move that seemed unlikely after the Cowboys signed Deonte Thompson a few days ago, but I know a lot of Cowboys Nation will be excited about this transaction.

Allen Hurns joins a receiver group that features Dez Bryant, Cole Beasley, Terrance Williams, Ryan Switzer, Noah Brown, and the recently added Deonte Thompson.

While this move is exciting, it does create more confusion for the Cowboys and their wide receivers. It's difficult to imagine all of these WRs sticking to the roster, which means there will be some tough decisions that need to be made.

What will the Cowboys do with Dez Bryant?

Will Cole Beasley be cut or traded?

Are the Cowboys comfortable absorbing Terrance Williams' cap hit if traded or released?

Will this keep the Cowboys from drafting a WR early?

All of these questions and more will have to be answered eventually. But, one thing is for sure, things are definitely about to get interesting.

Of course, there is a bonus here for the Dallas Cowboys. Since Allen Hurns was released by the Jacksonville Jaguars, he doesn't count against the Cowboys compensatory picks next season.

Please stay tuned and we will continue to keep you updated on contract details and any other news involving Allen Hurns as it becomes available.

What do you think about the Allen Hurns signing?

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Player News

Cowboys Sign Free Agent WR Deonte Thompson

Jess Haynie



Deonte Thompson

The Dallas Cowboys added some speed to their receiver corps today by signing free agent Deonte Thompson. He played for both the Chicago Bears and Buffalo Bills last season.

Thompson, who turned 29 last month, went undrafted in 2012. He had a quiet to start to his career as a reserve and practice squad guy in Baltimore and Chicago, but finally got a chance to shine with seven starts last year for the Bills. He 27 catches for 430 yards and one touchdown in just 11 games.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

The #Cowboys signed WR Deonte Thompson, per agent @davidcanter. He gets 1-year, $2.5M with a $1M signing bonus.

Deonte brings some much-needed speed to the Cowboys offense. He ran a 4.31 40-yard dash as a rookie, and while he's 29 now he still poses more of a vertical threat than the current Dallas receivers.

Given the low salary in this deal, Thompson may not be seen as much than a replacement for Brice Butler near the bottom of Dallas' depth chart. We also have to wait and see what happens with the draft and other moves this offseason to know where he fits into the bigger picture.

For now, though, Cowboys fans can take a little comfort in knowing the front office hasn't completely fallen asleep at the wheel.

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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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