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Should Cowboys Take A Chance On This Former 1st-Round Draft Pick?

Brian Martin

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Should Cowboys Take A Chance On This Former 1st-Round Draft Pick?

The Dallas Cowboys top priority this off-season is to improve the defensive side of the ball, especially the talent/depth at the defensive end and cornerback positions. They should leave no stone unturned, which is why I think they should take a chance on former the 1st-round draft pick, Justin Gilbert.

Justin Gilbert was the eighth overall draft pick by the Cleveland Browns in the 2014 NFL Draft. He has already been tabbed with the dreaded "bust" label, but I think the Dallas Cowboys could show an interest in bringing him aboard regardless of any labels associated with the former standout CB from Oklahoma State.

With Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr's possible departure in free agency this off-season, the Cowboys depth at CB is extremely thin. The position is so thin in fact, that Anthony Brown, Orlando Scandrick, and Leon McFadden would be the starter's if the season were to start today.

As you can see, the CB position absolutely has to be addressed and taking a chance on Justin Gilbert can be one of those low risk high reward situations the Cowboys haven't minded taking the past.

Now, Gilbert's passion for the game and work ethic have been discussed at length as to the reasons why he hasn't been able to live up to his draft status so far. But, at 6'0", 202 and legitimate 4.3 speed, Gilbert is still an intriguing prospect at just 25 years old.

The Dallas Cowboys could be the perfect place for him to resurrect his career and if you continue reading I'll tell you why I think that's the case.

Was The Dallas Cowboys Defensive Line Better Than We Thought?Reason #1: The Rod Marinelli effect

I may be biased, but I don't think there is another defensive coordinator in the NFL that gets more out of his players then what Rod Marinelli does.

Ever since joining Dallas Cowboys, Marinelli has continuously gotten his defense to out perform everyone's expectations, despite the lackluster talent he has had to work with. If anybody can help Justin Gilbert reach his potential, it's Marinelli.

Of course, Rod Marinelli shouldn't be given all the credit. Cowboys cornerback coach, Joe Baker, also deserves to be recognized for the work he did with his CBs last year.

Baker did an outstanding job preparing his cornerbacks week after week despite the injuries that occurred throughout the season. Look no further than what he was able to do with rookie CB, Anthony Brown.

Brown had an outstanding rookie season, despite being the Cowboys sixth round draft pick.  His quick development will likely earn him a starting spot next season.

Just imagine what Rod Marinelli and Joe Baker can do with the talent like Justin Gilbert.

Should Cowboys Take A Chance On This Former 1st-Round Draft Pick? 1Reason #2: A return to The Lone Star State

What better way to rediscover your love for the game you've played nearly your entire life then to return to your home state and reignite the fire that drove you to want to become a professional football player in the first place?

That's right, for those of you that didn't know, Justin Gilbert is from the great state of Texas. He attended Huntsville High School, in Huntsville, Texas, where he was a quarterback and defensive back for the Huntsville Hornets football team.

Returning home to Texas could be the best thing that could possibly happen to Gilbert if he is serious about resurrecting his career. There is just no better feeling than to be surrounded by friends and family in a familiar setting.

After finishing his career at Oklahoma State, which by the way isn't too far from Texas, having to move to Cleveland after being drafted by the Browns must have been a complete culture shock. Not only did Gilbert have to familiarize himself with a new state/city, he also ended up having to play for one of the worst teams in the NFL for the past several seasons.

I don't know about you, but that would kind of make me question my passion for the game as well.

I honestly think that if Justin Gilbert was able to get back to his roots in the Lone Star State, he would rediscover why he fell in love with the game to begin with and start playing like the CB a lot of people thought he was coming out of Oklahoma State.

Do you think the Dallas Cowboys should take a chance on Justin Gilbert?

Let me know what you think in the comment section below.



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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6 Comments
  • Randy Martin

    You have to wonder though when he had a chance to resurrect his career in Pittsburgh, where some players have found new life. Joe Thomas, his former teammate at Cleveland had some disparaging remarks about Gilbert, basically implying he doesn’t want to play football. Sounds a little like RoMac, though for possibly different reasons. That being said it has certainly worth bringing him in and sitting down with him to find out where his head is at and work him out. If he passes the sniff test, he could be a cheap signing.

    • Brian Martin

      Randy, I agree with you. In Pittsburgh he didn’t really get a chance to get on the field on defense because he was buried on the depth chart. The only playing time he did receive was returning kicks. I think they cut him because they didn’t want to pay him the money he was making. I wouldn’t be surprised if they tried to re-sign him to a cheaper contract. I would take a chance on bringing him to camp and see if a return to his home state can reignite his passion for football. I know playing for arguably the worst team in the league (Browns) would kind of make it hard to want to come to work every day. It could be one of those low risk high reward situations.

  • Jason Waltner

    Bring him in. Vet minimum. See if he gets out of camp…

    • Brian Martin

      I agree, but it will depend on how much they invest in the position in the draft this week. I would definitely take a chance though.

      • Jason Waltner

        Do it anyway regardless of draft. Better competition, better players, better depth. We only have 3 CBs right now. If we drafted 2, that’s only 5. Need to bring in about 8-10 for camp

        • Brian Martin

          They definitely need more depth, but any rookie they bring in needs as many repetitions as possible to get up to speed. There are only so many practices to do that.

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Where In The World Is DE Taco Charlton?

Kevin Brady

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Sean's Scout: Defense Comes Alive In Loss At LA Rams 2
Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Over pretty much the last decade, the Dallas Cowboys have been rock solid with their first round picks. With selections of Ezekiel Elliott, Travis Frederick, Byron Jones, Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, and Leighton Vander Esch (just to name a handful), Dallas has rebuilt the core of their roster through the NFL Draft.

It's nearly impossible to bat .1000 in any round of the draft, however, and this appears to be the current case with the Cowboys' 2017 first round pick.

Defensive end Taco Charlton has not had the sophomore season that he, or anyone, had hoped for. A healthy scratch last Sunday, Charlton has only been active for 1 of the Cowboys' last 5 games, and has not recorded a sack or tackle since week 9.

Prior to disappearing with injuries and "attitude issues," Charlton had only recorded 1 sack on the season and was beginning to fall behind his Hot Boy-brethren. Defensive end Randy Gregory has reached his form over the last few weeks, Tyrone Crawford is having arguably a career year, and DeMarcus Lawrence is one of the best ends in all of football.

This doesn't leave much room for Charlton, who's now having issues even getting on the gameday roster. Rod Marinelli dodged questions about Taco Charlton earlier this week, vaguely saying they are "moving forward" and that he'd like to talk about other players on his defensive line who are performing.

Calvin Watkins on Twitter

Rod Marinelli on Taco Charlton's benching and being inactive last week: "We just keep moving along keep going forward. It's kinda been out there I'd leave it at that. I'd rather talk about our two tackles.

Charlton has not been quiet about his displeasure as of late, either. He's taken to Twitter to voice his frustrations, saying that not only is his shoulder fine but that the Dallas media is making up stories about his absence. He's also posted some cryptic tweets such as this one, with a picture of Allen Iverson and a caption reading "Every players needs that one coach to believe in them."

https://twitter.com/TheSupremeTaco/status/1072203745868554240

Maybe Taco is right. Maybe he just needs increased opportunity and a support system/coach that believes in him whole-heartedly. After all, Charlton has faced nothing but doubters and detractors since the second he was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys.

But in the NFL, the ultimate "what have you done for me lately" sport, it's hard to imagine he'll get that unwavering support anywhere in the league. He's going to have to "earn" his playing time, as head coach Jason Garrett spoke to earlier in the week. But with the plethora of talent the Cowboys are already putting out there on the defensive line, it's becoming difficult to see exactly where Taco Charlton can fit in on this defense.

It's possible, and fine, if it is simply not a fit between Charlton and the Cowboys at this point. But I'd also be wary of giving up on your first round pick in just his second NFL season. Another offseason with the team, working on his craft and getting fully healthy, should do Charlton wonders, and hopefully allow us to get a better read on his future with the Cowboys going forward.

Until then, we are all left to scratch out heads and wonder what in the world is going on with the Cowboys and Taco Charlton, and if the former first round pick will have a future in Dallas at all.



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Cowboys, Bears Proving Defense Can Win the NFC

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Cowboys, Bears Proving Defense Can Win the NFC

2018 has seen the emergence of high-powered offenses in both NFL conferences. The Kansas City Chiefs sit atop the AFC and the NFC is spearheaded by the New Orleans Saints and Los Angeles Rams. Through 14 weeks, these three teams are the top three offenses in the NFL, each averaging over 30 points per game. This year, for the first time in NFL history, two teams scored more than 50 in the same game.

Thanks to this consistent impressive offensive performances, you would think "offense" is the name of the game for the 2018 NFL season. Well, not so fast, my friend. Despite sitting atop the NFC, the Saints and the Rams have recently suffered losses that indicate hope is anything but lost for defensive teams in the league.

The Chicago Bears were able to bring down the Rams last Sunday Night 15-6. The same offense that averages 33 points per game was limited to six points. Sean McVay's remarkable offense went home with no touchdowns to talk about on the plane back home. Instead, they probably discussed Jared Goff's four interceptions.

Weeks earlier, the Dallas Cowboys shocked the world when they brought down the Saints. Drew Brees, Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas simply couldn't move the ball against Leighton Vander Esch, DeMarcus Lawrence and Byron Jones. 13 points were all the Cowboys needed to score to beat an offense that was averaging 37 per game heading into week 13 but was only able to put up 10 in Dallas.

The Cowboys are the #4 seed with the Bears slightly ahead of them as the #3 seed in the NFC. Together, these teams have defeated the top two in the conference. Now granted, playoffs will definitely be different.

For starters, if they are to advance to the divisional round, they'll be on the road. Chicago was surely benefited by playing in such a cold weather versus a Los Angeles team. As far as the Cowboys are concerned, few times has AT&T Stadium been as loud as when they beat the Saints.

Hopefully, we'll get to see both of these elite defenses advance to the Divisional Round to  square off against this couple of high-powered offenses again. We will not only be witnessing amazing football games, but a great discussion regarding the everlasting debate between offense and defense.

For years, "defense wins championships" has been a widely accepted statement in football. The Cowboys and Bears have made that same statement resound recently with their impressive wins.

Can they do it again in January football? Can they do it on the road?

Tell me what you think about "Cowboys, Bears Proving Defense Can Win the NFC" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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Cowboys en Español: Los Colts No Son Cualquier Rival

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Fantasy Football - Fantasy Football Quarterback Rankings - Week 2 2
Andy Lyons / Getty Images

Al igual que el resto de la afición de los Dallas Cowboys, parte de mí se siente confiada respecto a este equipo visitando a Indianapolis Colts y resultando victoriosos. ¿El problema? Los Colts no son un rival sencillo de vencer. Si crees que la racha de los Cowboys los intimidará, piensa de nuevo. Los Houston Texans llevaban nueve victorias al hilo antes de enfrentarse a este equipo.

Siendo objetivos, este puede ser el partido que evite que los Cowboys cierren su temporada con ocho victorias al hilo para terminar el año con un récord de 11-5. Ni los Tampa Bay Buccaneers ni los New York Giants deberían presentar amenaza alguna contra Dallas. Lo mismo no se puede decir de Indianapolis.

Por primera vez en mucho tiempo, Andrew Luck está realmente de vuelta. Gracias a una reconstrucción de su línea ofensiva, su nivel de juego a regresado al nivel que conocíamos de él desde que llegó a la NFL. Afortunadamente para los Colts, Luck se ha mantenido sano toda la temporada y no se ve rastro alguno de sus lesiones anteriores en el emparrillado.

T.Y. Hilton está teniendo un muy buen año y sin duda alguna presentará un reto para Byron Jones y el resto de la secundaria de los Cowboys. Eric Ebron en la posición de tight end también será un dolor de cabeza para la defensiva.

Lo más interesante se dará en las trincheras. Los Cowboys han hecho un muy buen trabajo presionando quarterbacks opuestos en la temporada, pero si el centro de los Colts, Ryan Kelly está sano el domingo, se enfrentarán al mejor duo de centro-guardia en la liga actualmente. Con Quenton Nelson al lado, Luck estará muy bien protegido.

Sin embargo, Kelly no ha jugado debido a una lesión y aún está por verse si tomará el campo el domingo por la mañana. Los Cowboys hicieron un muy buen trabajo a la entonces ofensiva #1 de la liga, los New Orleans Saints, pero eso no significa que la ofensiva #8 que tienen los Colts no los retará.

Promediando 27 puntos por juego, la defensiva necesitará ayuda de Dak Prescott y compañía para ganar el partido. Dallas continúa moviendo el balón efectivamente, pero es tiempo de anotar touchdowns y no goles de campo.

Ezekiel Elliott será, una vez más, clave para la victoria. Enfrentándose a una defensiva Top 10 contra el juego terrestre, mover las cadenas con Zeke no será tan fácil. El novato Darius Leonard como linebacker ha sido algo espectacular otra temporada al igual que Leighton Vander Esch. Liderando a toda la NFL en tackleadas, estará listo para recibir a los Cowboys al Lucas Oil Stadium.

Lo más importante de este partido...

Por más impresionante que sea la racha de cinco victorias consecutivas, los Cowboys tienen que demostrar que pueden ganarle a un equipo fuerte estando de visita. Porque hay que admitirlo, Jason Garrett y su equipo no han tenido éxito fuera de casa. Claro, le ganaron a un equipo debilitado de Philadelphia Eagles y a unos Atlanta Falcons que va 4-9.

Este equipo "nuevo" de los Cowboys no ha ido contra un rival de calidad siendo el visitante. Es tiempo de demostrar que lo pueden hacer, ya que si quieren contender en postemporada, es justo lo que necesitarán... jugar bien de visita.

Sinceramente creo que los Cowboys ganan este partido. Principalmente gracias a su defensiva, pero también veo a la ofensiva dominar el tiempo de posesión en un juego de pocos puntos. Es tiempo de mantener esa racha.

Tell me what you think about "Cowboys en Español: Los Colts No Son Cualquier Rival" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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