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Dez Bryant Caught It, For Real this Time

Sean Martin

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Dez Bryant Caught It, For Real this Time
(Ron Jenkins/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS)

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.

Kevin Seifert on Twitter

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.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

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?

Trevor Sikkema on Twitter

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.

Cowboys Nation on Twitter

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?

Tell us what you think about "Dez Bryant Caught It, For Real this Time" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Boro Panther, Montclair State Red Hawk, and most importantly a proud member of Cowboys Nation! I host "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and wmscradio.com every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Twitter: @SeanMartinNFL.

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BREAKING: Dallas Cowboys Sign Free Agent Safety George Iloka

Jess Haynie

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George Iloka

The Dallas Cowboys have reached a one-year agreement with Safety George Iloka, according to ESPN's Todd Archer. Iloka spent 2018 with the Vikings after six years with the Bengals.

He's started 79 of his 99 career games since being a fifth-round pick by Cincinnati in 2012. Iloka turns 29 years old next week.

Todd Archer on Twitter

The Cowboys have agreed to a one-year deal with safety George Iloka, according to a source. Iloka met with the Cowboys on Friday and was the third safety to meet with the club during the week along with Clayton Geathers and Eric Berry. The Cowboys have... https://t.co/JB5nJLWepc

This isn't the safety that most Cowboys fans wanted. After over a year of pining for Earl Thomas, sights turned to Eric Berry after his free agent visit in Dallas last week.

However, it makes sense that Iloka would be attractive to the Cowboys. At 6'4" and 225 lbs, he fits the physical mold of what Defensive Backs Coach Kris Richard likes in his players. He also is younger than Berry and Thomas without the same recent injury issues.

Iloka becomes one of many Boise St. products on Dallas' roster, joining Tyrone Crawford, DeMarcus Lawrence, Leighton Vander Esch, and others. He entered the league with college teammates Crawford and Kellen Moore, the Cowboys' new offensive coordinator, in 2012.

We'll have to wait and see how George Iloka fits into the current mix at safety with Jeff Heath and Xavier Woods. He spent most of 2018 as a backup with Minnesota, but Dallas will likely give him a chance to start.



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BREAKING: Cowboys Sign Ex-Packers WR Randall Cobb

Brian Martin

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BREAKING: Cowboys Sign Ex-Packers WR Randall Cobb

According to multiple sources, the Dallas Cowboys have signed former Green Bay Packers Wide Receiver Randall Cobb to a one-year deal to help bolster their depth at the WR position and potentially become Cole Beasley's replacement.

Adam Schefter on Twitter

Cowboys are giving former Packers' WR Randall Cobb a one-year, $5 million deal, per source. https://t.co/8KWFPjSP8T

The Dallas Cowboys met with Randall Cobb earlier this week, but he eventually left Dallas without a contract. He must've had a change of heart or just needed time to ponder the Cowboys offer, but regardless of what transpired in that short time he is now part of America's Team.

During his time with the Packers, Cobb accumulated 470 receptions for 5,524 receiving yards and 41 touchdowns. The eight-year veteran will now be expected to replace some of Cole Beasley's production out of the slot for the Dallas Cowboys.

After years of watching Beasley as the Cowboys slot WR, it will be really interesting to see Randall Cobb in that role. He's not as quick twitched as No. 11, but can be just as dangerous due to his ability to be more of a down the field receiver. He also brings added value in the return game and could compete with Tavon Austin to become the return specialist.

This could mean the Cowboys forgo drafting a wide receiver early in the 2019 NFL Draft, but I wouldn't put it past them. Regardless of what happens, this is an excellent addition.

Welcome to Cowboys Nation Randall Cobb!



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REPORT: Dallas Cowboys Re-sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur

Jess Haynie

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L.P. Ladouceur

L.P. Ladouceur is returning for his 15th season as the Cowboys' long snapper. The veteran free agent was re-signed by Dalals today to a one-year deal.

Thanks to Jason Witten's one-year sabbatical with Monday Night Football, Ladouceur has now been with the Cowboys for more consecutive seasons than any current player. He just turned 38 last week, but Louis-Philippe remains one of the top long snappers in football.

Todd Archer on Twitter

The Cowboys have signed long-snapper L.P. Ladouceur to a one-year deal worth $1.03 million and $90,000 in bonus money, but he will count $735,000 against the cap. This will be Ladouceur's 15th season with the Cowboys, tying Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Mark... https://t.co/2iDsi6RX7e

Retaining Ladouceur is an underrated move for the Cowboys given their situation at kicker.

Brett Maher was only 80% accurate overall on field goals last year. The team could be considering an upgrade in free agency.

Whether they bring Maher back or try someone new, having a long snapper with Ladouceur's performance perfection will make things much easier for them.



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