Taking a look at how the Cowboys have built their 2014 Training Camp Roster, the Cowboys currently have 92 players: 88 players on the Active Roster, 2 players on Active Reserve, and 2 players on Inactive Reserve.
Of those players, 59 were originally drafted or signed as Undrafted College Free Agents (UCFA). Thirty-three of those players were originally drafted or signed by other NFL teams (shown in parentheses after the names. Forty-six of the players were drafted, and the other 46 were UCFA’s. Of the drafted players, 31 of them were drafted by the Cowboys, and 15 were signed as Veteran Free Agents or acquired in trade.
Here is the breakdown of players, by the round they were drafted in:
- 9 - 1st Round Picks – Bryant, Claiborne, Frederick, Martin, R.McClain(OAK), Okoye(HOU), T.Smith, Spencer, Weeden(CLE)
- 6 - 2nd Round Picks – Carter, Durant(JAC), Escobar, D.Lawrence, Lee, R.Williams(ARI)
- 7 - 3rd Round Picks – Crawford, T.McClain(CAR), Murray, Wilcox, T.Williams, Wilson(NO), Witten
- 6 - 4th Round Picks – Free, Hitchens, Johnson, Melton(CHI), Webb, Wilber
- 5 - 5th Round Picks – Carr(KC), Nwaneri(JAC), Randle, Scandrick, Street
- 6 - 6th Round Picks – Briscoe(CIN), Hanna, Harris, Hayden(CAR), Holloman, Mincey(NE)
- 7 - 7th Round Picks – Bernadeau(CAR), Bishop, Dixon, Gardner, Mitchell, Selvie(STL), W.Smith
- 46 - Undrafted Free Agents – Adams, Aladenoye, Bailey, Beasley, Benford, Boatright(SEA), Boyd, Bush, Byrd(ARI), Church, Clutts(CHI), Coleman, Copeland, Dunbar, Goodin(NYG), Green(NE), Hanie(CHI), Heath, Hamilton, Hornsey, Jones, Krieter, Ladouceur(NO), C.Lawrence, Leary, Lemon, Minter(CHI), Moore(Oak), Najvar, Newsome(JAC), Ojomo(NYG), Patmon, Patrick, Parnell(NO), Rayford(WAS), Romo, Sapp, K.Smith, R.Smith, Thomas(NO), Tribue(DEN), Vaughn, Watson(NE), Weems(IND), Wetzel(OAK), Whaley
Rookie in Italics - Projected Starters in Red
Here is the order in which the current players on the roster were acquired.
- 4/26/2003 – Jason Witten (3rd round)
- 4/28/2003 – Tony Romo (UCFA, PS)
- 9/28/2005 – Louis-Philippe Ladouceur (UCFA) – entered NFL in 2005 as UCFA (NO)
- 4/29/2007 – Doug Free (4th round)
- 4/27/2008 – Orlando Scandrick (5th round)
- 4/22/2010 – Dez Bryant – (1st round)
- 4/25/2010 – Barry Church (UCFA)
- 10/14/2010 – Jermey Parnell (signed off NO PS) – entered NFL in 2009 as UCFA, PS (NO)
- 4/28/2011 – Tyron Smith (1st round)
- 4/29/2011 – Bruce Carter (2nd round)
- 4/29/2011 – DeMarco Murray (3rd round)
- 4/30/2011 – Dwayne Harris (6th round, PS)
- 5/1/2011 – Chris Jones (UCFA)
- 7/25/2011 – Dan Bailey (UCFA)
- 3/14/2012 – Brandon Carr (VFA) – entered NFL in 2008 in 5th round (KC)
- 3/14/2012 – Mackenzy Bernadeau (VFA) – entered NFL in 2008 in 7th round (CAR)
- 4/26/2012 – Morris Claiborne (1st round)
- 4/27/2012 – Tyrone Crawford (3rd round)
- 4/28/2012 – Kyle Wilbur (4th round)
- 4/28/2012 – Matt Johnson (4th round)
- 4/28/2012 – James Hanna (6th round)
- 4/29/2012 – Cole Beasley (UCFA)
- 4/29/2012 – Lance Dunbar (UCFA, PS)
- 4/29/2012 – Ron Leary (UCFA, PS)
- 4/29/2012 – Tim Benford (UCFA, PS)
- 11/30/2012 – Sterling Moore (signed off NE PS) – entered NFL in 2011 as UCFA, PS (OAK)
- 12/5/2012 – Darrion Weems (signed off DEN PS) – entered NFL in 2012 as UCFA, PS (IND)
- 2/11/2013 – Nick Hayden (VFA) – entered NFL in 2008 in 6th round (CAR)
- 3/27/2013 – Justin Durant (VFA) – entered NFL in 2007 in 2nd round (JAC)
- 4/25/2013 – Travis Frederick (1st round)
- 4/26/2013 – Gavin Escobar (2nd round)
- 4/26/2013 – Terrance Williams (3rd round)
- 4/26/2013 – J.J. Wilcox (3rd round)
- 4/27/2013 – B.W. Webb (4th round)
- 4/27/2013 – Joseph Randle (5th round)
- 4/27/2013 – Davonte Holloman (6th round)
- 4/28/2013 – Jeff Heath (UCFA)
- 4/28/2013 – Jakar Hamilton (UCFA, PS)
- 4/28/2013 – Cameron Lawrence (UCFA, PS)
- 7/24/2013 – George Selvie (VFA) – entered NFL in 2010 in 7th round (STL)
- 9/3/2013 – Caesar Rayford (VFA, PS – CFL and AFL) – entered NFL in 2013 as CFL/AFL VFA (IND)
- 9/17/2013 – Jamar Newsome (VFA, PS) – entered NFL in 2011 as UCFA (JAC)
- 11/12/2013 – John Wetzel (UCFA, PS) – entered NFL in 2013 as UCFA (OAK)
- 11/21/2013 – Orie Lemon (signed off ARI PS) – entered NFL in 2011 as UCFA (DAL, PS)
- 11/26/2013 – Martez Wilson (VFA) – entered NFL in 2011 as 3rd round pick (NO)
- 12/3/2013 – Tyler Clutts (VFA) – entered NFL in 2008 as UCFA, PS (CHI, PS)
- 3/12/2014 – Jeremy Mincey (VFA) – entered NFL in 2006 as 6th round pick (NE)
- 3/12/2014 – Terrell McClain (VFA) – entered NFL in 2011 as 3rd round pick (CAR)
- 3/17/2014 – Brandon Weeden (VFA) – entered NFL in 2012 as 1st round pick (CLE)
- 3/18/2014 – Henry Melton (VFA) – entered NFL in 2009 as 4th round pick (CHI)
- 4/24/2014 – Caleb Hanie (VFA) – entered NFL in 2008 as UCFA (CHI)
- 5/1/2014 – LaRon Byrd (VFA) – entered NFL in 2012 as UCFA (ARI)
- 5/8/2014 – Zach Martin (1st round pick)
- 5/9/2014 – DeMarcus Lawrence (2nd round pick)
- 5/10/2014 – Anthony Hitchens (4th round pick)
- 5/10/2014 – Devin Street (5th round pick)
- 5/10/2014 – Ben Gardner (7th round pick)
- 5/10/2014 – Will Smith (7th round pick)
- 5/10/2014 – Ahmad Dixon (7th round pick)
- 5/10/2014 – Ken Bishop (7th round pick)
- 5/10/2014 – Terrance Mitchell (7th round pick)
- 5/11/2014 – Josh Aladenoye (UCFA) - $5K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Chris Boyd (UCFA) - $3.5K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Davon Coleman (UCFA) - $1.5K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – J.C. Copeland (UCFA) - $2K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Casey Kreiter (UCFA) - $3K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Jordan Najvar (UCFA) – $1.5K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Ronald Patrick (UCFA) - $1.5K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Dontavis Sapp (UCFA) - $1K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Keith Smith (UCFA) - $2K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Ryan Smith (UCFA) - $1.5K bonus
- 5/11/2014 – Dustin Vaughn (UCFA) - $5K bonus
- 5/19/2014 – Ryan Williams (VFA) – entered NFL in 2011 as 2nd round pick (ARI)
- 5/21/2014 – Tyler Patmon (UCFA)
- 6/10/2014 – Dartwan Bush (UCFA)
- 7/1/2014 – Rolando McClain (Trade with BAL) – entered NFL in 2010 as 1st round pick (OAK)
- 7/21/2014 – Dezmon Briscoe (VFA) – entered NFL in 2010 as 6th round pick (CIN)
- 7/25/2014 – Uche Nwaneri – (VFA) – entered NFL in 2007 as 5th round pick (JAC)
- 8/1/2014 – Kenneth Boatright (VFA) – entered NFL in 2013 as UCFA (SEA)
- 8/1/2014 – Adewale Ojomo (VFA) – entered NFL in 2012 as UCFA (NYG)
- 8/4/2014 – Wayne Tribue (VFA) – entered NFL in 2012 as UCFA, PS (DEN)
- 8/6/2014 – Johnny Thomas (UCFA) – entered NFL in 2012 as UCFA (NO)
- 8/9/2014 – D.J. Adams (UCFA)
- 8/11/2014 – Tom Hornsey (UCFA)
- 8/12/2014 – Stephen Goodin (VFA) – entered NFL in 2012 as UCFA (NYG)
- 8/12/2014 – Justin Green (Trade with NE) – entered NFL in 2013 as UCFA (NE)
- 8/14/2014 – Zach Minter (VFA) – entered NFL in 2013 as UCFA (CHI)
- 8/14/2014 – Asa Watson (UCFA) – entered NFL in 2014 as UCFA (NE)
Reserve List Players
- 4/28/2007 – Anthony Spencer (1st round) – Active Reserve, Physically Unable to Perform List
- 4/23/2010 – Sean Lee – (2nd round) – Inactive Reserve, Injured
- 5/11/2014 – Chris Whaley (UCFA) - $5K bonus, Inactive, Non-Football Illness
- 5/16/2014 – Amobi Okoye (VFA) – entered NFL in 2007 as 1st round pick (HOU), Active Reserve, Non Football Injury
The Cowboys have waived 12 of the original 21 UCFA’s they signed right after the draft. The Cowboys have since signed an additional 16 players, including 5 more undrafted rookie free agents and 11 veteran free agents.
Rookies that have already been waived:
5/11/14 – S – Marvin Robinson – UDFA ($2K bonus) - waived
5/11/14 – OG - Brian Clarke – UDFA ($1.5K bonus) – waived injured
5/11/14 – OG - Andre Cureton – UDFA ($3K bonus) - waived
5/11/14 – RB - Ben Malena – UDFA ($2K bonus) waived injured
5/11/14 – LB - Joe Windsor – UDFA ($1.5K bonus) waived
5/11/14 – RB - Glasco Martin – UDFA - waived
5/11/14 – CB – Dashaun Phillips – UDFA ($7.5K bonus) waived
5/11/14 – CB – Jocquel Skinner – UDFA ($1.5K bonus) waived
5/11/14 – OG - Jarrod Pughsley – UDFA ($5K bonus) waived
5/11/14 – P - Cody Mandell – UDFA ($2K bonus) waived
5/11/14 – TE - Evan Wilson – UDFA ($2.5K bonus) waived
5/11/14 – WR - L’Damian Washington – UDFA ($7K bonus) waived injured
4 Depth Players to Keep in Mind on Dallas Cowboys Roster
Maneuvering through the NFL offseason is a funny task for committed football fans, especially those of Cowboys Nation. Prior to the start of each new season bringing hope for all 32 clubs to reach the Super Bowl, every NFL roster enters a tumultuous state. Talent will be added through free agency and the Draft, while promising players will also be shuffled around through practice squads and training camp releases.
All of that to say, despite criticism for appearing stagnant so far this offseason on the heels of a 9-7 campaign, nobody knows what the Dallas Cowboys will actually look like in 2018. This is why I've decided to feature four under the radar players on the current Cowboys' roster below, all of which provide depth at positions of need.
TE Blake Jarwin
An undrafted free agent out of Oklahoma State, Blake Jarwin found his way onto the Cowboys' practice squad for 2017.
Jarwin showed enough promise early in his Cowboys career to earn fans on the coaching staff and throughout the organization, as he was promoted to the active roster in week eight. The Philadelphia Eagles were reportedly in position to snatch Jarwin from the Cowboys - who protected their versatile tight end.
The TE position remains unsettled for the Cowboys in 2018 and beyond, with Jason Witten's production clearly declining. The Cowboys will also be on their third TE coach in three seasons this year, transitioning to Doug Nussmeier.
Nussmeier brings no previous experience as a TE coach specifically, meaning the team's overall philosophy on the position will still be determined heavily by Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan. Favoring tight ends that can block in the running game over those with higher upside as receiving threats, Jarwin is a name to keep in mind as a tenacious blocker that plays with sound technique.
WR Lance Lenoir
This past summer, I had the chance to interview Dallas Cowboys WR Lance Lenoir following his signing with the team out of Western Illinois. In that interview, Lenoir shows off the confidence he took into training camp as a receiver that would have a hard time making the team.
By the end of this long season, the Cowboys went from being perceived as deep and talented at WR to in need of new play makers on the outside.
Perhaps pressing a bit through the preseason, Lenoir did provide practice depth as a reliable pass catcher and punt returner, struggling on special teams in live action and ultimately spending the season on the practice squad.
The 2018 NFL Draft features a deep class of talented receivers, and the Cowboys would be wise to draft one with real potential that can push up the depth chart in a hurry. As far as current options on the roster to fill this position, WR Lance Lenoir can't be overlooked as an athletic target with NFL size and strength - entering his second season in Dallas.
DT Datone Jones
A mid-season acquisition from the Green Bay Packers, Datone Jones flashed as a defensive tackle in the limited opportunities he received. A five-year league veteran, Jones showed the ability to play with power and leverage at the 1T position - a spot the Cowboys are thin at right now.
Jones' versatility also suited him well, playing with impressive burst and disruptive ability as a pass-rushing 3T.
The addition of one more starting caliber DT could truly put this Dallas defensive front over the edge. With how much Defensive Coordinator Rod Marinelli believes in his DL rotation though, players like Datone Jones can prove immensely valuable.
DT Lewis Neal
Similarly to Jones, Lewis Neal is a fan-favorite defensive tackle for the Cowboys. Neal has absolutely earned the attention he's gotten, a UDFA out of LSU that plays the 1T position better than expected given his size.
The Cowboys have gotten by in recent years with smaller, more mobile players at this interior DT spot, with Neal being their latest post-draft steal to make an impact.
Lewis Neal appeared in seven games for the Cowboys this season, finding ways to help those around him by anchoring the line of scrimmage and disengaging with active hands and a quick base. This is a player that should be a valuable part of the team's depth on the defensive line.
✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭
The year-to-year nature of the NFL can be a wonderful thing (unfortunately, ask any Eagles fan right now). Part of this reality is understanding that none of the players listed above may actually stick with the Dallas Cowboys for 2018.
Next week's NFL Scouting Combine will kick "draft season" into full gear however, as the Cowboys will be working to better understand their teams needs and how they can be addressed.
Jarwin, Lenoir, Jones, and Neal all contributed or showed the promise to do so at positions the Cowboys must improve at this season - warranting a closer look through this dull portion of the offseason.
Cowboys 2018 Free Agents: RB Alfred Morris
After two seasons of providing veteran depth for the Dallas Cowboys, running back Alfred Morris is about to be a free agent again. Does the 29-year-old still have value for the club, or will Dallas go with younger options in 2018?
Morris was signed in March of 2016. At the time, it was assumed he would be the backup to incumbent starter Darren McFadden and perhaps even split carries.
But a month later, Dallas drafted Ezekiel Elliott and drastically changed the landscape at the running back position.
If Alfred suddenly seemed expendable, that quickly changed in June when McFadden broke his elbow. Morris wound being the number-two back after all, but he was rarely used as Elliott immediately became the workhorse RB and held that role for all of his spectacular rookie season.
Last year, we all know what happened with Ezekiel Elliott. Morris became the primary RB during Zeke's suspension and had solid numbers, averaging 4.35 yards on his 99 carries during that six-week stretch.
By Week 16, though, not only had Zeke returned but Rod Smith had started to break out from the depth chart. In the Cowboys' pivotal game that week against the Seattle Seahawks, Alfred didn't even get a touch behind Elliott and Smith.
Considering Smith's emergence last year, and him only being 26, it's easy to see why Dallas may not be looking to bring Alfred Morris back. They seem to have their one-two punch already set at the top of the RB depth chart.
What's more, Morris isn't likely to settle for a likely third-place role. He may not be interested in coming back to Dallas given the situation.
Thankfully for Alfred, he enters the free agent market with some good tape from 2017 showing that he can still produce. It's not a loaded crop of free agents this year and, despite his age, Morris could still find a good job somewhere. He's earned an opportunity to compete, if nothing else.
That opportunity likely won't come in Dallas, though. As I wrote about last month, the Cowboys have enough power already and need to add a speed option in their RB rotation.
That said, Alfred Morris spent the last two years giving Dallas good value for the money. He was a solid free agent pickup and his time as a Cowboy should be remembered fondly. At this point, though, I doubt that relationship will continue.
Though Promising, We Need To Relax About Safety Kavon Frazier
With the addition of former Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Kris Richard to the Cowboys' defensive coaching staff, fans are hoping that Dallas will create their own "Legion of Boom." Of course this is a lofty goal, but one worth pursuing nonetheless.
If the Cowboys are to recreate the Legion of Boom they will need their version of two vital pieces: Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor.
The Seahawks defense works, in many ways, because of these two players. Thomas' ability to play centerfield and literally defend sideline to sideline gives the Seahawks the freedom to use Chancellor where he's best, as a box safety. Chancellor is a big, physical safety who defends the run effectively in the box and can blanket tight ends in man coverage with his size and athleticism.
These safeties are arguably the most critical pieces to the Legion of Boom, though having a shutdown corner in Richard Sherman certainly doesn't hurt.
Realizing Chancellor's importance, Cowboys fans are hoping that current safety Kavon Frazier can fulfill this role in Dallas. Since being drafted by the Cowboys in 2016 Frazier has made his home on Special Teams. As an impressive tackler in both punt and kick coverage, Frazier earned himself time at safety down the stretch of the 2017 season.
All in all, Frazier played rather well. Against the Washington Redskins he stepped in and made a few splash plays at the line of scrimmage, causing Cowboys Nation to lose their minds. After that impressive Thursday night game, however, Kavon Frazier didn't really reach that same level of performance.
Frazier is still a liability when asked to cover, especially when asked to play as a two deep safety. He also struggles when taking angles at times, though playing downhill as a tackler is his best attribute. Frazier actually reminds me a bit of Barry Church, though over time Church became more refined in coverage than Frazier currently is.
Some have argued that Kavon Frazier's presence should stop the Cowboys from considering a first round safety. I would disagree, and actually believe that if Florida State's Derwin James is available, the Cowboys should consider making that pick.
If you could combine the athleticism and coverage abilities of Byron Jones with the physicality and "box safety" qualities of Kavon Frazier, you'd have a fantastic safety. Unfortunately, this isn't the Marvel Universe and we are left without any super heroes in the back-end.
Hopefully Kris Richard will figure out how to correctly place all of these pieces in the Dallas Cowboys secondary going forward.
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