The Dallas Cowboys may have a new passing game coordinator to configure their young secondary in 2017, replacing Matt Eberflus with former Seahawks secondary coach Kris Richard, but this does not mean that the Cowboys are finished trying former quarterbacks at safety. Most notably, practice squad S Jameill Showers remains a valuable part of the scout team in his transition from QB to the defensive side of the ball.
Now, Jason Thompson joins the Cowboys’ defense by way of the Patriots, Bears, and Seahawks. Thompson spent training camp and the entire preseason with the AFC-champion Patriots before being released and finding himself on the Bears’ practice squad followed by the Seahawks’.
Known for bringing the “Legion of Boom” to prominence in the NFL with the Seahawks, Kris Richard values athleticism and size in his secondary – two things that Thompson flashed in college as a safety at Utah.
Jason Thompson started his career as a QB/RB at Wyoming prior to transferring to Utah and switching to safety. Thompson played alongside Marcus Williams at Utah, the Saints’ second-round pick remembered this season for allowing Stefon Diggs to send the Vikings to the NFC Championship Game with the “Minneapolis Miracle”.
A solid athlete in his own right, Thompson posted the following numbers at Utah’s pro day:
- 6.57 second 3 cone
- 4.01 second short shuttle
- 4.45 second 40 yard dash
- 39 1/2″ vertical
- 11’1″ broad jump
For comparison, here is how Cowboys’ Safety Byron Jones — considered one of the most athletic defenders in the league — compared to Thompson at the NFL Combine (where he set the record for broad jump distance).
Offseason speculation about any new additions to a roster that won’t be in action again for months is always fun, and that is exactly what this Thompson signing is for the Cowboys. While the most realistic outcome is that Thompson never sees meaningful snaps in Dallas, there is clearly untapped potential that Kris Richard and this staff may be able to hit on here.
Jason Thompson’s signing will certainly not deter the Dallas Cowboys from drafting a safety early in the 2018 NFL Draft, should they feel the need to with Jones potentially moving back to CB – leaving Jeff Heath, Xavier Woods, and Kavon Frazier as the team’s primary safeties.