Football is a beautiful thing.
At its core it's a game, but the umbrella of football stretches so wide, it can be quite astounding at times.
Pro Football History is a library of umbrellas, each covering its own special area in time. The story of this game, of this league, is a tale as old as time... and each teller has a unique way of expressing it.
I like to consider myself a student of NFL History. I enjoy few things more than speeding my DeLorean to 88mph, traveling back in time to see where this league has come from. My "DeLorean," as in the magic of books - they're beautiful. I've read many a different book, watched many a different documentary, my brain soaking up everything it can in the process.
As a Staff Writer for Inside The Star, it's no secret that beyond the love I have for the NFL is a special place for one of its most storied teams, the Dallas Cowboys - America's Team.
The Dallas Cowboys are arguably the greatest franchise to ever exist, not just in the NFL, or North America, but in the world of sports. Theirs is a story well worth telling, and one which invokes a full gamut of emotions. From laughs and sighs, to fist pumps and tears.
Recently, I recounted the great history of the Dallas Cowboys via the works of prize-winning sports writer, Jim Reeves. A longtime sports columnist for the Forth Worth Star-Telegram, Jim has a new book...
"The hapless victims -- again -- were the Buffalo Bills, 30-13. What Troy Aikman had done through the air a year earlier in a 52-17 rout at the Rose Bowl, Smith had done on the ground this time around. The (counterfeit) Bills lost their fourth straight Super Bowl."
~ JIM REEVES, PROLOGUE, DALLAS COWBOYS: LEGENDS OF AMERICA'S TEAM
To call this 192-page journey just a book doesn't do it justice.
Jim Reeves has managed to intertwine the wealth of knowledge an encyclopedia brings, with a story only a great author can pen. He guides you year after year, season after season, Super Bowl after Super Bowl, all through his very own DeLorean. Mr. Reeves touches on every aspect of Cowboys Ownership.
What was the environment like with Clint Murchison?
Where was Bum Bright's heart all along?
How is Jerry Jones a saint/Santa to many?
All of those questions, and many more, are answered inside.
The Cowboys Coaches are summarized all the way from Tom Landry's square-chin mannerisms to Jimmy Johnson eating at Mia's on The Saturday Night Massacre's eve. How did Jerry Jones manage to bring in a coach like Bill "The Big Tuna" Parcells and relinquish control?
The legendary stories are all here.
Each Dallas Cowboys Legend is featured and expanded on. Roger Staubach and the story of how he climbed to the 11th story window, Troy Aikman and the palpable tension he experienced with Barry Switzer. Michael Irvin's stories are too many to list. Current Cowboy Dez Bryant, and many more are here for you to learn about.
The best part about Dallas Cowboys: The Legends Of America's Team is that it's told through an incredibly objective lens.
Jim Reeves' impartial perspective is well-established here as he tells you all about the most glorious days the Dallas Cowboys have ever seen. The Ice Bowl, The Catch, and all eight Super Bowl appearances by the Cowboys are all expanded upon for you to re-live in an epic fashion.
This book is perfect for any fan of the Cowboys, and football in general. Jim's superb writing gives each page the same level of energy as a Roger Staubach comeback drive, or one of Michael Irvin's speeches, or a Tony Romo spin-move.
''Who better to tell the 'Legends of America's Team' than Jim Reeves, one of the most trusted and reliable sources for your Cowboy news and history.'' -- Daryl ''Moose'' Johnston, former star Cowboys fullback (Sept. 6, 2016). Meet the characters and relieve the games and controversies that captur...
You can purchase your copy at Silver Star Mercantile in Carollton, Texas Star Trading Book Store in Abilene, Buc-ee's in Forth Worth, The Last Word Book Store in Forth Worth, Amazon.com (click here), Dallas Cowboys Pro Shops, or in E-book Kindle/Nook versions. It's also available from Great Texas Line Press, the book's publisher who is also based out of Arlington, and from Barnes & Noble.
I also encourage you to reach out to the author and show your love of the Cowboys with the man who has spent a lifetime documenting the team, by visiting and liking the book's Facebook Page. Jim Reeves will even be doing a book signing/sale on October 10th from 6pm-9pm at Legal Draft Beer Co., 500 E Division, Arlington, TX. If you buy a book, you get a free beer!
Get the book today. It'll be the best $9.95 you've spent on your passion for the Cowboys yet.
I'd like to offer a special thanks to Great Texas Line Press for giving us an early look at the book, and the opportunity to tell our readers about it.
Does James Hanna’s Retirement Make TE a Draft Priority?
The Dallas Cowboys depth at the tight end position took a little bit of a hit this past Friday when James Hanna announced to the world that he planned on retiring. The Cowboys will now move him to the reserve/retired list, thus creating questions as to who will be Jason Witten's primary backup in 2018?
Before James Hanna's retirement announcement, it was rumored he could end up getting cut to get some salary-cap relief. The Cowboys fortunately didn't have to make that decision, but Hanna's retirement has the same impact on the salary-cap as it would have if it would've been released.
The downside of all of this is that the Dallas Cowboys now have to find out who will now become their backup tight end this season. This is definitely an important decision because Jason Witten is no longer the threat he once was, and his age could make him start becoming susceptible to injuries, although he has been an Iron Man the majority of his career.
I don't know about you, but there's really not anybody currently on the Cowboys roster who inspires a lot of confidence. Geoff Swaim will likely step into James Hanna's vacated role behind Jason Witten, but the depth behind him creates more questions than answers.
The Dallas Cowboys are supposedly pretty high on Blake Jarwin, but he will be entering his second year and hasn't really received a lot of playing time as of yet. Then, there is Rico Gathers, a fan favorite, who flashed his ability in preseason last year.
Gathers mere size and athletic ability makes him a mismatch against anybody who tries to cover him, but I just don't know how committed he is to his football career. He seems much more focused on trying to become a rapper than he does improving his craft. Hopefully, that's not the case and he can take the next step in his development.
The Dallas Cowboys current situation at the tight end position is a little depressing. In fact, I really think it's holding the Cowboys offense back and it's past time to do some upgrading.
Fortunately, there is an event happening this week that could improve the entire tight end position… the 2018 NFL Draft. If the Dallas Cowboys weren't planning on drafting a tight end before James Hanna's retirement, they should seriously consider it now.
Jason Witten isn't going to play forever and if he was to get injured, the Cowboys offense would seriously be in trouble. We all know he's not the player he once was, but he is still the best and most dependable option currently on the roster.
Unfortunately, we witnessed firsthand just how bad things can get when a starter goes down and the depth behind them isn't capable of stepping in and handling the job. That is why the Dallas Cowboys should have a better contingency plan in place if something were to happen to Witten.
The good news is that this year's TE draft class is pretty deep and the Dallas Cowboys should be able to take one to not only replace James Hanna, but hopefully become Witten's successor as well.
Should the Dallas Cowboys draft a tight end?
Dallas Cowboys “All or Nothing” Series to Shed New Light on HC Jason Garrett
You likely already know by now that the 2017 Dallas Cowboys season -- by all accounts, a forgettable one for fans, coaches, and big-name players -- will be documented forever thanks to NFL Films' latest All or Nothing series.
Effectively, All or Nothing is a new spin on the popular Hard Knocks series with one major difference. This Amazon Prime exclusive doesn't just follow a team through training camp, as NFL Films gets inside team meetings and games throughout the entire season.
The 2017 Cowboys yielded just nine wins, creating more than enough drama for television along the way. This was yet another season where Head Coach Jason Garrett's job was put on the line, although early reviews of All or Nothing (available to the public April 27th) paint Garrett as the lead antagonist.
Jason Garrett drops at least 10 f-bombs in the first show. Before the Broncos game in Week 2: "You want to quiet the game down? Hand the f---in' ball to 21 and knock their ass off the ball.
Watching the Titanic and expecting a different outcome is a surefire way to set yourself up for disappointment, as will be reliving a frustrating season in Dallas. By the end though, Cowboys fans will have a much better understanding of where the 2018 team stands - particularly in the eyes of a Head Coach they looked to fire once again this offseason.
Jason Garrett has long been described as a "players coach", one that his Cowboys teams want to fight for. Whether or not the Cowboys have gone too far in constantly churning their roster in Garrett's image for little end result will likely be determined this season.
This is a Head Coach that has been in place for the departure of DeMarcus Ware, Tony Romo (serving as a pivotal decision maker for the Cowboys choosing Dak Prescott as their full-time starter in 2016), and most recently Dez Bryant.
An added bonus to All or Nothing will likely be that it captures Dez Bryant's final moments with the Cowboys.
Garrett to Zeke at practice after Broncos loss: "I want that f---in guy at Ohio St. who was running down on that kickoff. Remember after you played your 2nd play in the NFL against the Seahawks, you came over to me and you said, 'Give me the f---in ball!'
The Cowboys did not just lose Ezekiel Elliott in 2017 (serving his six game suspension), and All or Nothing will remind every one of just how much talent came off the field for Garrett's team last season. Coming out at the same time as the Dallas hosted 2018 Draft, Cowboys fans can build their excitement for a 2018 triumph back to the playoffs.
Anything short of this likely costs Jason Garrett his job, although everything he means to the Dallas Cowboys will be put in better-than-ever perspective by All or Nothing.
I don't wanna spoil the "All or Nothing" TV show more than what you've already seen or heard. But if you watch it, you're going to get a great look at: 1. Jason Garrett's actual persona 2. The dynamics of Dez's relationship within the team 3.
Cowboys en Español: Definiendo la Urgencia por un WR este NFL Draft
El líder en recepciones de anotación en la historia de la franquicia más emblemática en la historia de los Dallas Cowboys, Dez Bryant, ha visto su tiempo portando la estrella solitaria llegar a su fin. Un fin, por cierto, que dejó a algunos cuantos aficionados, administrativos y jugadores en un estado de descontento.
Por más que me gustaría entrar a detalle de si el veterano receptor merecía ser recortado o no, si el equipo tomó la decisión correcta o no, el NFL Draft está a menos de una semana de distancia. Así que, en vez de hablar de lo que pudo haber sido, hablemos de lo que puede ser.
Los Cowboys, a pesar de ser conocidos como una potencia ofensiva en las últimas temporadas, necesitan a un wide receiver. Sí, Dallas consiguió al agente libre de Jacksonville Allen Hurns, pero siendo honestos, no parece ser suficiente talento para un equipo que quiere construirle una ofensiva amigable a su quarterback, Dak Prescott.
Si el roster sólo tiene a Allen Hurns, Terrance Williams, Cole Beasley, Ryan Switzer, Noah Brown y Deonte Thompson; se necesita un WR. Incluso con Bryant en el equipo, se necesitaba un receptor. Lo cual lleva a la gran pregunta: ¿el despido de Dez significa que a los Cowboys les urge aún más un receptor? ¿Significa que definitivamente buscarán mejorar la posición con su selección de primera ronda?
Algo queda claro, la administración sabía lo que sucedería. Dez Bryant no estaba en los planes para el 2018 y claramente sus planes para abordar el NFL Draft no se verán cambiados por la partida del apasionado #88.
Estas estrategias se plantean por meses y más meses. Los Cowboys se han fijado mucho en la posición de receptor, desde que fue el NFL Combine hasta las visitas privadas que toman lugar a lo largo de Abril.
Es un hecho que tienen en la mira a los receptores. Claramente, quieren añadir más talento a la ofensiva para Dak Prescott.
En una clase de prospectos que cuenta con bastantes receptores, otra pregunta naturalmente, es ¿lo harán en primera ronda o más tarde? Me sorprendería demasiado si el equipo espera hasta la tercera ronda. Sin duda, es algo que tienen que atender con una de sus dos primeros picks.
En el primero, la selección #19 global, podrían encontrar a uno de los tres mejores receptores del año. Calvin Ridley, de Alabama; Courtland Sutton, de SMU; DJ Moore, de Maryland. Si buscarán el "remplazo" de Dez Bryant en uno de estos tres jugadores, definitivamente será uno de estos tres prospectos.
Todos tienen lo suyo. Sutton es un receptor estilo "X" (como Dez Bryant) mientras Ridley, por ejemplo, es claramente un receptor "Z" (como Terrance Williams). DJ Moore brinda un poco de versatilidad entre ambos roles, y podría ser un jugador de impacto en cualquiera que se le juegue, aunque probablemente brillaría más si se le permitiera jugar como un "Z."
Afortunadamente para Dallas, el recién firmado Allen Hurns también es capaz de tomar cualquiera de los dos roles. Esto le da flexibilidad a los Cowboys de tomar al que más les guste, o en su defecto, a quien esté disponible.
En mi segundo Mock Draft del año, simulé a Courtland Sutton, producto de SMU a los Cowboys con el pick #19. Los coaches de la Estrella Solitaria han mostrado bastante interés por el producto local y no me sorprendería nada verlos aterrizar un receptor como él la próxima semana.
Ahora bien, si Dallas decide esperar hasta la segunda ronda para conseguir a un par de manos confiables, encontrarán talento. Definitivamente. James Washington, DJ Chark, Michael Gallup, Anthony Miller, entre otros podrían estar ahí en la selección #50 (segunda ronda).
Si el equipo quiere tomar talento para otra posición en la primera, lo podrán hacer sabiendo que encontrarán un WR talentoso al día siguiente.
Afortunadamente, esta ofensiva se basa en Ezekiel Elliott y el juego terrestre detrás de la línea ofensiva. Los receptores son importantes, por supuesto, pero no es necesario tener algo tan dominante como lo fue Dez Bryant en el 2013 y el 2014, por ejemplo.
Por ahora, sólo falta esperar como abordan los Cowboys esta necesidad la próxima semana cuando el NFL Draft del 2018 tome lugar en el mismo lugar en el que este equipo juega sus partidos e intenta pelear, el AT&T Stadium.
Con un poco de suerte, estrenaran el campo este 2018 obteniendo su primer victoria del año la próxima semana.
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