The NFL season is right around the corner and in just nine days, the Dallas Cowboys will take the field against the Los Angeles Rams. Finally, we'll be able to see this football team on the field for real and begin to see just what they're made of. As they get ready to kick off the regular season, this is a team with lofty aspirations and on paper, looks to have the team to achieve those goals. To hear the Cowboys talk, the ultimate goal is to compete for a Super Bowl. If they're serious about doing so, then they shouldn't leave anything to chance and they should sign Earl Thomas.
The NFL kicks off in six days and the Dallas Cowboys travel to face the Los Angeles Rams in nine days. Still, the Dallas Cowboys have questions at safety. If it feels like we've brought up the safety position a bunch for years, it's because it's been a problem for years. After Darian Thompson outplayed Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in training camp, leading to Clinton-Dix's release, we're here yet again talking about the safety position.
It's certainly possible that the coaching staff feels good about Darian Thompson starting at safety after seeing his 2019 game film and watching him in training camp practices. If the Dallas Cowboys go into the season with Xavier Woods and Darian Thompson at safety, perhaps they'll be just fine. However, it runs somewhat counterintuitive to how they've handled questions this offseason.
The Cowboys have worked this offseason to solidify questions and set their team up to make a run to the playoffs and deeper in 2020. Though they allowed Byron Jones to walk in free agency, they spent considerable resources in both the draft and free agency to supplement the cornerback group with options. They added Dontari Poe, Aldon Smith, and Everson Griffen to help DeMarcus Lawrence and Tyrone Crawford along the defensive line. Then, when they could have waited on wide receiver, they took arguably the best wide receiver in the draft, giving them an embarrassment of riches with CeeDee Lamb, Amari Cooper, and Michael Gallup.
And yet, they still have an issue at safety. They need to add Earl Thomas.
Earl Thomas is a 3x All-Pro and 7x Pro Bowl selection, one of nine safeties in the history of the NFL to record those accolades. Earl Thomas is the only active safety of the group and seven of the other eight safeties have been inducted into the Hall of Fame and the one that hasn't, Charles Woodson, will eventually be enshrined in Canton, Ohio.
Though the Dallas Cowboys have added players to help solidify the cornerback position, we don't yet know what's going to happen there with Jourdan Lewis and Chidobe Awuzie dealing with injuries. Trevon Diggs has had an outstanding training camp, but rookies can have a difficult time making the transition to the NFL. With questions at cornerback, it makes sense to solidify the back end of your defense with a future Hall of Fame safety.
While Earl Thomas comes with some baggage, he's still a tremendous player that can help the Dallas Cowboys defense and help them win games. He has a lot of experience and has played in a lot of big games for both the Seattle Seahawks and the Baltimore Ravens. He's averaged three interceptions a season over the course of his 10-year career. Even in 2018 when he played just four games for the Seahawks, he recorded three interceptions. The guy knows how to create turnovers and isn't that what this defense is supposedly all about.
The Cowboys have flirted with adding Earl Thomas to their defense since 2018 and have always found a reason to talk themselves out of it. They've been unwilling to address the safety position with a significant signing or in the premium rounds of the draft for years now. This is the time to pull the trigger.
Earl Thomas is a player that makes your defense better, therefore making your team better. In a league that has become as pass-happy as the NFL has over the last decade, it's important to have players that can cover and cover well. Especially as the Dallas Cowboys will have one of the most explosive offenses in football in 2020, they need to have a defense that can keep teams from throwing the ball and working their way back into the game. That's why they added Aldon Smith and Everson Griffen. They want a defense that can be a closer by rushing the passer and providing tight, opportunistic pass defense.
Though Ha Ha Clinton-Dix didn't work out, the Cowboys still have an option to improve their defense with Earl Thomas on the market. They'll be making a lot of roster moves over the next 24 hours as they work to get down to 53 before the Saturday deadline. Amidst all the cuts, waiver claims, and movement of players to the practice squad, they need to bring Earl Thomas in for a visit and not let him leave without a contract. As the season inches closer, now's the time to strike.