Connect with us

Dallas Cowboys

Darren McFadden Injured: 3 Surprising Cowboys That Could Benefit

I used to be a huge fan of the popular TV show Grey’s Anatomy. I say used to because I no longer am. At its peak the show had some insane drama that sucked me in. This was pre-DVR so I watched this bad boy live. Ultimately I gave up on it, like most of the show’s iconic actors coincidentally, because it became too unreal.

RJ Ochoa



Cowboys Headlines - 3 Surprising Cowboys That Could Benefit From Darren McFadden's Injury 1

I used to be a huge fan of the popular TV show Grey's Anatomy.

I say used to because I no longer am. At its peak the show had some insane drama that sucked me in. This was pre-DVR so I watched this bad boy live.

Ultimately I gave up on it, like most of the show's iconic actors coincidentally, because it became too unreal. The storylines were too difficult to believe. I mean, I know it's primetime television but at some point there is a line, Shonda Rhimes!

When I found out Darren McFadden broke his elbow trying to save his cellphone from falling in the pool I could've sworn Meredith Grey herself appeared out of thin air right in front of me to rub my face in the unbelievable.

In all seriousness I hope that Darren McFadden is alright, and he will reportedly be back in a little over two months. That's only two weeks before the regular season, no big deal!

My fellow Staff Writer Brian Martin dropped some knowledge earlier today on how this setback could cost Darren McFadden his spot on the 2016 Dallas Cowboys Roster. He made a lot of sense, and he got me thinking.

Say that the Dallas Cowboys were considering carrying four Running Backs on this year's roster. It's not that far out of the realm of possibility when you consider that Ezekiel Elliott, Alfred Morris, and Darren McFadden were all practically locks to make the team. If you want to debate that you can go ahead, but not here! Not today! Let's move on.

So McFadden was making this team, and what if Brian is right? What if this injury really does cost him his roster spot? That leaves a spot up for grabs! It's my belief that this hypothetical spot could prove prosperous for a few different Cowboys.

Here are three surprising examples.

Rico Gathers

I don't know which narrative I'm more sick of: basketball players playing tight end in the NFL or the fact that Rico Gathers hasn't played "competitive" football since he was 14 or whatever.

Cowboys Headlines - 3 Surprising Cowboys That Could Benefit From Darren McFadden's Injury

Regardless of the circumstances, when he last played, what color my socks are (black FYI) Rico Gathers is a tight end for the Dallas Cowboys. While it was long thought that the transition he's undergoing, admittedly a necessary one, would take some time that might land him on the Practice Squad this year... that might not necessarily be true anymore.

If this spot is indeed open, why not exercise it on Gathers? If you're really afraid that someone else is going to snatch him up from your Practice Squad, a legitimate fear mind you, then prohibit that. You've got the spot to burn.

Like a great Disco Inferno let it burn, baby burn.

Ronald Leary

"RJ, what in the world are you talking about? Have you lost your damn mind?!"

To be fair I started this whole dealio off with a Grey's Anatomy reference so maybe. Good news is I could literally lose my mind, like have it fall out of my skull, pick it up, shove it in my pocket, and walk into the fictional Grey's Anatomy hospital only to have a miracle surgery save my life. That's how they roll.

Look. Ronald Leary is, based on his own talents, making this team. We all agree there.

Cowboys Headlines - 3 Surprising Cowboys That Could Benefit From Darren McFadden's Injury 2

We all also know that Mr. Leary is, for reasons beyond the understanding of my pocketed brain, discontent wearing the Dallas Cowboys Star. He wants out.

With so many roster decisions to make maybe it made structural sense for the Cowboys to deal Leary. We never wish for injuries, but Training Camp is full of them and that could have been when someone called up Jones & Co. to swing a deal.

Now that there's an extra roster spot just chilling there like my brain, it's the perfect place to stash a guy like Ron Leary for 2016. Isn't Leary just the Darren McFadden of the Offensive Line anyway? He is to La'el Collins what DMC is to Zeke, a veteran backup who's being pushed out. Salt-N-Pepa's here!

Jaylon Smith

I've been very vocal about the fact that I do not believe that Jaylon Smith will ever suit up or play a down of football for the Dallas Cowboys in 2016. But my brain is all messed up so let's party.

The brain trust of the Dallas Cowboys seems to believe that Jaylon is going to defy modern medicine and prove me wrong. Cool. I hope they're right.

Cowboys Headlines - 3 Surprising Cowboys That Could Benefit From Darren McFadden's Injury 3

If they believe that to a legitimate degree they're going to be faced with some interesting roster decisions. Sure the NFI list offers a duct tape sort of solution to the Jaylon problem, but ultimately they're going to have to address it firmly.

Hello open roster spot. You sure are shaped just like Jaylon Smith. Let me just plug him in here.

This roster spot could be the way that Jaylon finds his way onto the 2016 Cowboys. It might not materalize in September, but as the little kid in Angels In the Outfield said, "It could happen."

Bam. Jaylon'd.

What are your thoughts? Who do you think is a surprising Dallas Cowboy that could benefit from DMC's injury? Let us know! Comment below, Email me at, or Tweet to me at @rjochoa!

Tell us what you think about "Darren McFadden Injured: 3 Surprising Cowboys That Could Benefit" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @RJOchoa!

I like long walks on the beach, mystery novels, no just kidding those suck. The Dallas Cowboys were put on this earth for us all to love and appreciate. I do that 24/7/365. I also love chicken parmesan. Let's roll. @RJOchoa if you wanna shout!

1 Comment
  • Jess Haynie

    Wasn't sure how you were going to make some of these connections. Well done! On Gathers & Smith… I don't think McFadden being gone changes anything about open roster spots. I figure they were going to keep the same number one way or the other. Darius Jackson was probably going be released and on the P-Squad if they kept both McFadden and Morris, especially once Dunbar returns. This just means Jackson or some other RB makes the team. On Leary… great point about how injuries could motivate the Cowboys to strike a deal. That's whole Leary situation will remain in play until the trade deadline.

Player News

Free Agent WR Allen Hurns Plans to Sign With Cowboys

Brian Martin



Free Agent WR Allen Hurns Plans to Sign With Cowboys

It looks as if the Dallas Cowboys will be adding yet another wide receiver through free agency. According to sources, Allen Hurns plans on signing with the Cowboys.

Josina Anderson on Twitter

WR Allen Hurns just told me, "I'm going to sign with Dallas." #Cowboys

This is a move that seemed unlikely after the Cowboys signed Deonte Thompson a few days ago, but I know a lot of Cowboys Nation will be excited about this transaction.

Allen Hurns joins a receiver group that features Dez Bryant, Cole Beasley, Terrance Williams, Ryan Switzer, Noah Brown, and the recently added Deonte Thompson.

While this move is exciting, it does create more confusion for the Cowboys and their wide receivers. It's difficult to imagine all of these WRs sticking to the roster, which means there will be some tough decisions that need to be made.

What will the Cowboys do with Dez Bryant?

Will Cole Beasley be cut or traded?

Are the Cowboys comfortable absorbing Terrance Williams' cap hit if traded or released?

Will this keep the Cowboys from drafting a WR early?

All of these questions and more will have to be answered eventually. But, one thing is for sure, things are definitely about to get interesting.

Of course, there is a bonus here for the Dallas Cowboys. Since Allen Hurns was released by the Jacksonville Jaguars, he doesn't count against the Cowboys compensatory picks next season.

Please stay tuned and we will continue to keep you updated on contract details and any other news involving Allen Hurns as it becomes available.

What do you think about the Allen Hurns signing?

Continue Reading

Dallas Cowboys

What Signing Thompson Means for Hurns and Cowboys WR Position

Mauricio Rodriguez



Questions Surround Cowboys WR Position After Deonte Thompson Signing

UPDATE: News of Hurns saying he will sign with the Cowboys broke as this article went live. 

Free Agency began a bit late for the Dallas Cowboys, but they've already done enough to get fans discussing about the latest additions to the roster. Adding help on offense, defense and special teams in form of tier-2 free agents may not be what Cowboys Nation wants to see, but I'm certain they wouldn't have enjoyed giving Sammy Watkins a three-year $48M contract, either.

However, the Cowboys are clearly in the wide receiver market after an offensively disappointing season. They have quite a few of this year's class of wide receivers prospects scheduled to visit Dallas, and they've hosted some WR free agents as well.

This week, they even signed one.

Deonte Thompson, who started seven games for the Bills last year, is coming to Dallas on a one-year $2.5M contract. The 29-year old could be the burner receiver this offense is missing and could end up being an improved version of Brice Butler for the Cowboys in 2018.

He hasn't had a great career but last season was his best year so far. Starting three games for the Bears and seven for the Bills, Thompson was able to rack up a career-high 555 yards and two touchdowns.

His best attribute as a player is definitely the speed he brings to the table and his ability to separate down the field, which he'll be looking to do on Dak Prescott's offense this season.

But there was another wide receiver visiting Dallas this week and now we wonder whether or not the Deonte Thompson signing will keep the Cowboys from targeting former Jaguars' WR Allen Hurns.

According to Todd Archer, that won't be the case.

Todd Archer on Twitter

Told the signing of Deonte Thompson does not close the door on the Cowboys' interest in Allen Hurns, who visited the team Wednesday and had dinner. Things could get interesting in the Cowboys' wide receivers' room.

It shouldn't be. First of all, Hurns is a much better player than Thompson and would provide this offense with a receiver who can play in the "X" or in the "Z" role. We've been talking about getting Prescott a reliable target to try to give him a "best friend." Allen Hurns could be just that.

Sure, he's had a couple of down seasons, but the talent is there to take.

Simply put, the Deonte Thompson signing shouldn't stop the Cowboys from looking at WR in the first round of the NFL Draft. Allen Hurns would.

Cowboys en Español: Nuevas Contrataciones, ¿Podría Ser Allen Hurns la Siguiente?

It sure would make things interesting in the wide receiver room for Dallas. Despite what many believe, Dez Bryant will probably remain a Cowboy even if Hurns is signed. Let's say the Cowboys go out there and get the 26-year old from Jacksonville and have to decide which six receivers to keep for the season.

They'd possibly have to decide among these:

  • Dez Bryant
  • Terrrance Williams
  • Cole Beasley
  • Ryan Switzer
  • Allen Hurns
  • Deonte Thompson
  • Noah Brown
  • A drafted rookie?  

This is where a lot of dilemmas start taking form. Cole Beasley and Ryan Switzer are basically the same player and if you're not going to use them both at the same time, do you keep them anyway? What about Terrance Williams? He could be the worst receiver to make the cut just because of his contract. 

Noah Brown showed promise in 2017, are they ready to move on from him? And finally, a rookie could very well end up beating Deonte Thompson, who was guaranteed a million in his contract.

Wide receiver is indeed one of the top needs for the Dallas Cowboys. They could head to the 2018 NFL Draft needing one in the top rounds or they could be fine signing Hurns and taking a late-rounder receiver to compete in training camp for a spot on the roster.

As long as they're having a tough time deciding because they are all good, it should be fine.

Tell me what you think about "What Signing Thompson Means for Hurns and Cowboys WR Position" in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 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!

Continue Reading

Player News

Cowboys Sign Free Agent WR Deonte Thompson

Jess Haynie



Deonte Thompson

The Dallas Cowboys added some speed to their receiver corps today by signing free agent Deonte Thompson. He played for both the Chicago Bears and Buffalo Bills last season.

Thompson, who turned 29 last month, went undrafted in 2012. He had a quiet to start to his career as a reserve and practice squad guy in Baltimore and Chicago, but finally got a chance to shine with seven starts last year for the Bills. He 27 catches for 430 yards and one touchdown in just 11 games.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

The #Cowboys signed WR Deonte Thompson, per agent @davidcanter. He gets 1-year, $2.5M with a $1M signing bonus.

Deonte brings some much-needed speed to the Cowboys offense. He ran a 4.31 40-yard dash as a rookie, and while he's 29 now he still poses more of a vertical threat than the current Dallas receivers.

Given the low salary in this deal, Thompson may not be seen as much than a replacement for Brice Butler near the bottom of Dallas' depth chart. We also have to wait and see what happens with the draft and other moves this offseason to know where he fits into the bigger picture.

For now, though, Cowboys fans can take a little comfort in knowing the front office hasn't completely fallen asleep at the wheel.

Continue Reading

Reader Survey

Want to help make Inside The Star better?

We’re collecting feedback from our readers about the site. It only takes <2 minutes to complete, and can be done from any device.

> Take the survey now

Don’t worry, your information will not be shared with anyone but me (Bryson T.).

Enjoy 40% commissions on officially licensed products as a FanPrint affiliate. You can even make your own, fully licensed Cowboys and player designs! Get started here