Cedric Thornton – 3 years remaining on a 4-year, $17 million deal
Maliek Collins – 3 years remaining on a 4-year, $3.55 million deal
David Irving – Exclusive rights free agent
David Ash – Exclusive rights free agent
Terrell McClain – Unrestricted free agent
Evaluation: Terrell McClain is the only defensive tackle for the Dallas Cowboys that will not be returning next season, but there is a slight possibility he could be back on a short-term deal.
Finally healthy, McClain had a really solid season in the middle the Cowboys defensive line and that’s the reason why I could see him possibly returning.
Cedric Thornton was last year’s big free agent signing in the off-season. He didn’t have as big of an impact as many of us would have liked, but with a year of experience in Marinelli’s 4-3 defensive scheme, he should only get better.
Maliek Collins performed so well as a rookie it allowed the Cowboys to move Tyrone Crawford to defensive end and help with the pass rush. Collins could be the starter at the 3-tech next season, but I expect a healthy competition between him and Crawford.
David Irving continues to show flashes that he can be a dominating player in the NFL, but he really needs to become a much more consistent player if he wants to see more playing time. The Cowboys hold his rights this year, so don’t expect him to go anywhere. I wouldn’t be surprised if they tried to work out a contract extension with him this off-season.
The defensive tackle position could use some depth, but overall is a solid group.