A lot of things have happened with the Dallas Cowboys since January 11th, 2015. Unfortunately, the majority of these events have not gone the team's way - including yesterday's ruling that the NFL now unanimously considers Dez Bryant's catch from that faithful and frigid afternoon at Lambeau Field to be just that, a good catch.
Ruled an incomplete pass after review, Dez Bryant went on to become the poster child for the ridiculous confusion that remains the league's catch rules. The Cowboys' most promising season yet under Tony Romo came to an abrupt end, as the Packers fell the following week at the Seahawks in the NFC Championship Game.
The NFL competition committee appears to have unanimous agreement that controversial catch rulings involving Dez Bryant and Calvin Johnson should have been ruled complete, according to Giants owner John Mara. So the committee, meeting in Indianapolis... https://t.co/OuKLHmdt4W
"Dez Caught It"
This phrase has become a rallying cry in Cowboys Nation. It has carried the connotation of fact for over three years now, even without yesterday's report.
Unfortunately, the Dallas Cowboys have done little to turn the phrase into anything but another example of why their loyal fans are forced to live in the past so damn often. Dez Bryant remains the only player still on the field out of the three involved on this infamous play, as Tony Romo has of course moved on to broadcasting. Packers CB Sam Shields was released prior to the 2017 season.
The Cowboys missed their opportunity at revenge against the Packers in 2016, hosting Green Bay as the NFC's top seed. Aaron Rodgers calmly ripped the soul out of AT&T Stadium that day, knocking rookie QB Dak Prescott out of the playoffs by orchestrating a game-winning drive in the fourth quarter.
Under Prescott, Bryant has never come close to the 88 catches and 1,320 yards he accumulated in 2014, also snagging a career-high 16 touchdowns. His very status on the team moving forward may be in question, as injuries have caught up to the aging Bryant in his efforts to be Prescott's top target.
"Here's one down the sideline. Pass caught...by Dez Bryant!"
This play is dangerously close to being a distant memory for the NFL. It's inexcusable that it took this long to cite the injustice done to the Cowboys in this moment as a reason the catch rules need to be reconsidered.
The Cowboys have of course spent plenty of time in a league spotlight since 2014 as well, with this past 2017 season being a two-part story in football mediocrity and off-field drama thanks to Ezekiel Elliott's suspension.
If the Cowboys' goal was to avoid all distractions heading into 2018, prior to unleashing Elliott on the league once more (with hopes of producing a "2014 DeMarco Murray" type of result), they have already failed thanks to Jerry Jones being fined by Roger Goodell in a continuation of the Elliott saga.
Clarity on NFL and #Cowboys owner Jerry Jones: It's not a fine, it's a reimbursement of costs incurred by member clubs. More than $2M. The resolution has been on the books for more than 20 years. Goodell did this after consulting with owners.
What Happens Now?
I'm going to need everyone who's ever told me that Dez didn't catch it to personally write me a hand-written letter in cursive explaining their apology and the deletion of their account. https://t.co/YeWTmkEjVl
As the Cowboys have been forced to accept since the end of their 2014 season, life goes on in this league - faster than any other. The Cowboys are coming off of a 9-7 season that fell short of the playoffs, but proved the overall strength and depth of this roster.
This team is close to avenging the Dez Bryant catch the only way possible - capturing an elusive sixth Super Bowl victory. Whether or not the Cowboys would be leading the NFL with six Lombardi trophies, while pursuing a seventh at the moment, will never be known after 2014's success was unfairly terminated.
OH MY GOD DEZ BRYANT
However, every single time you've ever said, "Dez caught it", you've been speaking in fact. Perhaps an offseason moral victory?
Dallas Cowboys to Re-Sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur for 2018
Continuity is the key to good special teams play in the NFL. Already losing long-time Special Teams Coordinator Rich Bisaccia to the Raiders - who promptly snatched ST aces Keith Smith and Kyle Wilber in free agency - the Dallas Cowboys have announced their intentions to re-sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur for the 2018 season.
Returning on a one-year deal, the fan favorite Ladouceur will be back to do what he does best in cleanly executing almost every special teams snap for Chris Jones or Dan Bailey to handle.
Long snapper L.P. Ladouceur will re-sign with the Cowboys on Monday, according to sources, on a one-year deal. He will be in his 14th season with the franchise. Only Jason Witten, Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Bill Bates and Mark Tuinei will have more years of... https://t.co/yTQbMYyrIv
While Jones has improved as the Cowboys' punter with each passing season, Kicker Dan Bailey actually enters 2018 as another question mark on this unit. With the general belief around the team being that Bailey will be just fine moving forward, the Cowboys will no longer have to worry about who handles long snaps next year either.
L.P. Ladouceur is back in the silver and blue, and in this moment, everything can be alright with the world.
Report: Raiders Sign Former Cowboys LB Kyle Wilber
A Free Agency period filled with departures continued for the Dallas Cowboys today, as the Oakland Raiders have reportedly signed the now-former Cowboys LB Kyle Wilber.
The Raiders have signed LB Kyle Wilber: https://t.co/TaC6cqjval
Wilber has been with the Cowboys since 2012, and has played in all 16 games four of the past five seasons. Most of his time has come on special teams, but he did provide solid linebacker depth for the Cowboys since joining the team.
Dallas has now lost both Wilber and Anthony Hitchens, depleting their linebacker depth even further over the last couple weeks.
The Raiders have now signed two key special teams contributors for the Cowboys in Keith Smith and Kyle Wilber this offseason. Hopefully Dallas can replace these types of "replacement level" players throughout the rest of the offseason, especially during the NFL Draft.
Report: Cowboys Officially Release CB Orlando Scandrick
After requesting his release from the team just a few days ago, Cowboys cornerback Orlando Scandrick has gotten his wish. According to ESPN's Josina Anderson, Scandrick has officially been cut by the Dallas Cowboys.
I'm told the #Cowboys have informed CB Orlando Scandrick he will be released, per source.
This move will reportedly save the Cowboys roughly $1.4M against the salary cap, as we hope they finally look to make some moves during the Free Agency period.
Scandrick's release comes after an offseason in which the Cowboys totally overhauled the back end of their defense, specifically their cornerbacks. With the emergence of young, promising players such as Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis, and the health issues of the aging Scandrick, the move makes a lot of sense.
In fact, after the Cowboys drafted Awuzie in the second round of last year's draft it was rumored the Cowboys were looking to move Scandrick for extra draft picks. Instead, one year later, they have cut him to save some cap room.
Orlando Scandrick should have a market to find a new team elsewhere, but his time in Dallas has now come to a close.
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