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Film Review: Getting to Know Cowboys Practice Squad DE Zach Moore

Sean Martin

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Cowboys Headlines - Film Review: Getting to Know Cowboys' Practice Squad DE Zach Moore

The Dallas Cowboys added some interesting names to their practice squad yesterday, which now consists mostly of players who showed some flashes in training camp and the preseason, but got lost in the numbers game that these coaches must play when deciding to carry established depth over potential.

One player new to the Dallas Cowboys is defensive end Zach Moore, who was released by the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday. Moore, a raw prospect out of Division II Concordia College of Minnesota, appeared in just one game for the hometown Vikings.

Prior to that, Zach Moore got his start in the NFL with the New England Patriots - who drafted him with the 198th overall pick in the 6th round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Active for eight games, Moore did not see any playing time in the postseason that saw the Patriots beat out the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX. Still, the 26-year-old edge rusher brings a Super Bowl ring to The Star and the Dallas Cowboys.

With the releases of both Ryan Russell and Mike McAdoo, Moore could quickly bring Moore more than that to Dallas' less than stellar defensive line, but he will have to earn a roster spot on a team that is currently settled on the majority of its 53 spots.

Let's dive into some tape to find out more on what Moore can bring to the Cowboys.

 

 

You have to go back to 2014 to find the last time Moore played significant snaps in the NFL, and because of that his rookie tape left a lot to be desired. However, there were plenty of positives to take away on the film, such as the ones you see above.

Rushing from the left end, Moore is able to use his hands to fight off the right tackle and capture the edge. Off the snap, the RT was able to do a decent job of sitting down on Moore, which linemen were able to do to him pretty consistently.

While it certainly wasn't the standard for Moore to be able to get back into these plays, the potential you see here has gone untapped for a while, and could be the beginning of a career under Rod Marinelli for Zach Moore.

 

 

 

As mentioned, Moore gets sat on easily by blockers, and lacks the consistent bend to counter their power moves. When he is able to bend, Moore showed the potential to be a violent player that will rally to the football and break down in tight spaces to tackle.

Should he get practice snaps against the likes of Tyron Smith and Doug Free, the Cowboys will need to see Moore become a lot less predictable with his moves and consistent with his leverage, in order to make any impact at all and earn playing time.

 

 

While it may sound too simple to be noteworthy, a good starting point for Zach Moore is that he consistently knocks his man backwards on first contact. An NFL Combine leader in the broad jump, Moore displays an impressive combination of arm length and lower body strength.

With work in all of the negative areas discussed above, Moore could become an incredibly valuable rotational DE in Dallas, with the ability to take offensive linemen by surprise and capture the edge in the passing game while being physical at the point of attack against the run.

 

 

The Cowboys know that they need help at defensive end to contend in 2016, and are beginning their search for bargain players with upside to develop under Rod Marinelli. Whether a big move is on the way to accompany this is yet to be determined. Or will the Cowboys' reluctance to address a need that has existed for some time now hold them back once again when the season begins on September 11th against the Giants?

Hopefully Moore has something to say about all of this, as he celebrates his birthday today! Inside The Star wishes him a happy birthday as Zach attempts to earn his star in the coming weeks.

Give Moore a happy birthday wish yourself on Twitter by following him @zachmoore_90!

For now, let me know what you think of the newly added Zach Moore by commenting below this article! You can also take the discussion to Twitter, and follow me @ShoreSportsNJ for plenty of analysis and commentary throughout the Dallas Cowboys season!

Tell us what you think about "Film Review: Getting to Know Cowboys Practice Squad DE Zach Moore" 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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4 Comments
  • https://www.facebook.com/app_scoped_user_id/1079295901/ Ethan Chazin

    Lot of emphasis on expecting Marinelli to “coach up” these rejects. You mean, like Ryan Russell?

    • http://wmscradio.com/show/upon-further-review/ Sean Martin

      Russell actually showed a ton of improvement from last season going into training camp this summer, but couldn’t carry it over to the preseason. Played out of scheme in college. Marinelli can only do so much of course, but I like his chances more with a guy that has been around and played at a level that’s likely better than what these current DEs can provide with any consistency. We’ll see if Moore amounts to anything sooner rather than later. Thank you for reading, Ethan!

  • Allen A Smith

    The cowboys really need 2 swallow their pride and bring back Greg Hardy we could use him he already knows the system he’s the best available defensive player out there who’s looking for another chance and could get him 4 cheap under certain clauses.Besides we’re going 2 regret it if somebody else gets him especially somebody in our division.Been a cowboy fan all my life finally came 2 my senses hopefully Jerry will…No risk no reward!

    • http://wmscradio.com/show/upon-further-review/ Sean Martin

      Allen, you make fair points, but I think Greg Hardy’s time in the NFL is done. If not, his ship in Dallas sailed a long time ago.

  • Ricklo

    Call Ip Zach Moore to Play this Sunday Night

    • http://wmscradio.com/show/upon-further-review/ Sean Martin

      Moore has been called up to replace Chaz Green. We’ll see if he is active, which he should be with Lawrence out.

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Cowboys DE Randy Gregory Reinstated, Will Join Team for Training Camp

Sean Martin

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Will the Dallas Cowboys "Get Lucky" at Defensive End?

The Dallas Cowboys patience with Defensive End Randy Gregory has paid off. Suspended for the better part of 2016 and all of 2017, Gregory has officially been reinstated to join the team for their 2018 training camp. The projected starter at RDE, Gregory will report to Oxnard with the rest of the team on July 25th.

From here, it will be all hard work for Gregory to reconnect with Defensive Coordinator Rod Marinelli and get his promising career back on track. The last time Gregory suited up for the Cowboys, he managed to sack Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback Carson Wentz in a week 17 win. The Cowboys will be expecting much more of this from a player they've supported through multiple violations of the league's heavily criticized substance abuse policy.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

Cowboys pass-rusher Randy Gregory's petition for reinstatement was not opposed, according to lawyer Daniel Moskowitz. He's back. "I've never been more proud of any individual in my life. I'm very excited for Randy and his daughter and the rest of the his family.

Among this support staff for Gregory were a number of teammates that wrote formal letters to the NFL as part of his bid for reinstatement. These last few days of preparation before the Cowboys are together again as a team will surely be uplifted by Gregory's presence.

They say no news is typically good news at this point in the offseason, something the Cowboys have come to realize far too often. Today's news shouldn't be confused with a pleasant surprise however, rather something the Cowboys were committed to in getting another premier pass rusher on the field.

Here is the NFL's official press release on their reinstatement of Randy Gregory:

Sean Martin ✭ on Twitter

Sean Martin ✭ on Twitter

https://t.co/za0u3lWgaY

Tell us what you think about "Cowboys DE Randy Gregory Reinstated, Will Join Team for Training Camp" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



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Cowboys & DeMarcus Lawrence Fail to Reach New Contract

Jess Haynie

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Which 2018 Free Agents Will The Cowboys Retain? 1
Andrew Dieb/Icon Sportwire

DeMarcus Lawrence will definitely be a Cowboy in 2018, but now the future  beyond that remains in question. The Dallas Cowboys and their star defensive end did not agree to a long-term contract by today's deadline for franchise-tagged players.

According to NFL rules, teams had until 4:00 pm EST today to reach contract extensions with free agents who'd been assigned the franchise tag earlier this offseason. Players who did not get new deals will have to play the 2018 season on their one-year franchise tenders.

Jon Machota on Twitter

DeMarcus Lawrence and the Cowboys were unable to work out a long-term contract by today's deadline. Lawrence will play the 2018 season under a one-year franchise tag that will pay him $17.1 million

This does not mean Lawrence will be a free agent in 2019. The two parties can still discuss the contract in the months to come, but the deal cannot be made until after the end of the regular season.

Dallas also has the option of giving DeMarcus a second franchise tag next year. However, that would come at a considerably higher price for a second-straight season.

This year, Lawrence will still make plenty with one of the highest cap hits of any DE in the league. He earned the franchise tag last with 14.5 sacks in a breakout season.

Today's news may not really be a big deal in the long run. As long as Tank wants to stay in Dallas after this, the two sides now have over five months to keep talking and will hopefully agree on a new deal for 2019 and beyond.

There is risk on both sides, of course.

Lawrence's leverage could be less if his productions drops or he gets injured. On the other hand, his position could be even stronger with a second-straight year of strong play.

Now everyone, from the team to player to fans, is in wait-and-see mode until the end of the season.



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Will Cowboys WR Noah Brown Do Enough to Make the Roster?

Sean Martin

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Will Cowboys WR Noah Brown Do Enough to Make Cowboys Roster? 2
(Tom Fox/The Dallas Morning News)

The Dallas Cowboys aren't short on numbers at wide receiver on their current 90-man roster. Looking to replace Dez Bryant and reshape their offense, the Cowboys will have to find the right group of pass catchers for Dak Prescott at their upcoming training camp.

This group includes Terrance Williams, Cole Beasley, Allen Hurns, Lance Lenoir, Deonte Thompson, Cedrick Wilson, Michael Gallup, KD Cannon, Mekale McCay, and Marchie Murdock.

The odd men out from this group will likely be the ones that can't sustain a consistent level of play, doing so across multiple units if needed. All ten receivers will have their flashes, but with only four being true locks to make the team, new Cowboys Wide Receivers Coach Sanjay Lal will be in on some tough decisions right away.

One such decision may be moving on from last year's seventh round pick Noah Brown out of Ohio State. Vouched for by former Buckeyes teammate Ezekiel Elliott thanks to his blocking ability on the outside, it may now be this strength in the run game and deficiency as a pass catcher that spells the end of Brown's run in Dallas.

Normally, a seventh round pick being on the roster bubble wouldn't be this noteworthy, but Brown clearly showed the potential to outplay this draft status as a rookie. Appearing in 13 games, Brown is a true X receiver, although not the dominant one the Cowboys are searching for.

What Happens if WR Allen Hurns Doesn't Pan Out?

Dallas Cowboys WR Deonte Thompson, Cedrick Wilson, Allen Hurns (AP Photo/Ron Jenkins)

Moving away from fielding a true number one receiver, the Cowboys did sign Allen Hurns to play this spot while prepared to spread the ball around to Williams, Beasley, and Gallup after that.

This leaves Thompson, Wilson, Cannon, Lenoir, McCay, Murdock, and Brown to prove their worth in other ways to make the roster. I've written plenty about the potential rookie Cedrick Wilson has, so I'll be expecting a strong showing from him to earn a role in the Cowboys offense.

Wilson's skill set could push a depth signing like Deonte Thompson off the team, although his ability to back up Cole Beasley/Tavon Austin on special teams is important. The same can be said about Lance Lenoir, who like Brown has the advantage over first year players given his trials through training camp and the preseason a year ago.

Long shots to make the team, Cannon, McCay, and Murdock fall just below this group -- and somewhere in the middle is Noah Brown.

Increasing his role on special teams as the season went on last year, Brown had fans throughout a coaching staff that is now drastically changed for 2018. From their shift to more speed on offense, to drafting of both Gallup and Wilson, calling Brown a fringe player on the Cowboys roster really sets up the fiery competition to come at wide receiver.

Will Cowboys WR Noah Brown Do Enough to Make Cowboys Roster?

Dallas Cowboys WR Noah Brown (Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports)

Should the Cowboys find a spot for Brown, one can only hope it means this new coaching staff has a clear plan for him to contribute on both offense and special teams outside of being a run blocker. A potential niche for Brown is his red zone ability, not afraid to put his body on the line for jump balls and fight through contact in his routes.

It won't be long until we sort out if this is enough to make the Cowboys as a wide receiver ahead of Quarterback Dak Prescott's third season.

Tell us what you think about "Will Cowboys WR Noah Brown Do Enough to Make the Roster?" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



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