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New Confidence brewing in Dallas

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The 08-09 Cowboys Defense, with the exception of two changes, looks very similar to last year's defense. The most highly publicized change has been the upgrade in the Dallas secondary. With the additions of number 1 draft pick Mike Jenkins, and the off-season trade for Adam Jones, joining the team, these two players should change the defense entirely. Along with undeniable skill, they bring with them a fierce bloodthirsty mentality, which this team has been missing for a long time. Neither of these guys has shown any reluctance to smack their opponent upside the head!

Mike Jenkins is an incredible man defender, he is a guy that you can put on an island and let him take his man out of the picture. So far from what I have seen he has two areas of improvement that need to be addressed. The first area of concern his occasional tendency to bite very hard on a double move. Once he gets more attuned with the NFL game a lot of this will take care of itself. The second area of concern with Jenkins is his zone coverage play. Let us not forget, he is a rookie and I am sure he has never seen a playbook quite this big, nor with this many reads to make. Our resident offensive coordinator is a Princeton grad, if a typical NFL playbook was 200 pages, I'm guessing his is 700. It is very evident to me that he has found himself a mentor, and he is responding extremely well to him. That mentor is none other than Terrence Newman! This floored me at first, not that Jenkins had a mentor, but more that it was Newman. Newman has always been very reserved and not much into teaching another corner how to play his position, especially one that will, one day, be trying to take his job! What has made Newman more willing to counsel the young up and comer?

Adam Jones, as we all know, has not been reinstated. Yet! I say yet because I believe it is merely formality. He, like Jenkins, is strong man defender with an attitude. I have been pleasantly surprised by this guy's work ethic. For a man who has been in all sorts of trouble, doing very immature things, he is coming across now as a throwback player. The league used to be full of players that were, shall we say, “lunch pale” kind of guys. Adam Jones clearly falls into that category. I know, I know, we all see the flashy “Pac-man bout to make it rain up in here” things. These things may be who he is off the field, but on the field he is nothing like that. Now has he suddenly appears to have become a better person off the field. Whether that is true or not, well that I do not know. But from what I have seen so far, if I had to give an answer, I would say probably he has cleaned up his off field act. People do come equipped with the ability to change who they are, and it is not up to you or I to judge anyone. He will have his day when he is judged. So now the next question becomes: Why is he apparently changing now and not 6 months ago?

In my opinion, the second substantial change to this defense is the principle difference! It is an addition that has not received a great deal of press and I certainly did not realize the impact that it would have. Dave Campo! Yes, Dave Campo! He may very well turn out to be the key acquisition for a run at the Super Bowl. Everyone, including myself, dismissed this guy. My opinion of him has always been: “How can he be the right man to turn a sorry secondary into a “Super Bowl Champion potential” secondary, when he failed miserably as the team's head coach”? Something I even neglect to remember sometimes is that when Campo took over as the head man, he acquired a very shitty football team. The players on that team loved Campo and they played hard for him. They simply were not NFL playoff caliber players! In the end, it cost him his job, but was it his fault entirely? My answer is NO! And I believe that if people within the organization were asked they would say the same thing. This, however, is nothing new for the NFL. Coaches get fired all the time when they do not win, no matter who is to blame! This guy has taken a mentally weak secondary and given them something that they have not seen at Valley Ranch in a long time; confidence! Even when they were winning Super Bowls, and were absolutely dominating teams, the secondary as a unit never had the confidence that they are showing now! That's right I said never. And that includes when Prime Time was here. Prime Time was the only one who had confidence or game for that matter. This team is different, and I for one believe it is instigated by one Dave Campo. So to find the answers to our questions about Newman and Jones, You need look no further than their leader!


Dallas Cowboys

REPORT: Cowboys DL David Irving’s Accuser Retracts Claims Of Domestic Violence

Kevin Brady

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David Irving

After what was a rather crazy day which resulted in reports the Frisco Police Department were investigating Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman David Irving for domestic violence, the accuser has now retracted her claims.

https://twitter.com/DCBlueStar/status/988527577915674624

This retraction comes after the mentioned reports of domestic violence claims against David Irving earlier in the day. Irving was neither arrested nor charged for the incidents, though two separate allegations were made.

Jobin Panicker on Twitter

BREAKING @FriscoPD confirms allegations made against Cowboys player David Irving were reported on April 22nd. At two separate times: 5pm & 10pm. Allegations made by girlfriend @wfaa

Irving has claimed through his own social media account that his accuser is an ex-girlfriend looking for retaliation over a breakup. Irving has already said he has changed the locks on his house in attempt to change behavior moving forward.

Whether or not Irving abused his reported ex-girlfriend is not for me to say, but it will be interesting to see how Roger Goodell handles the matter after she retracted her claims later in the day. As we know very well, the NFL can claim violation of the personal conduct policy even if the justice system pursues no charges.

And the results of both the Frisco PD's investigation and that of the league office will be intriguing over the coming weeks and months.


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REPORT: Cowboys DE/DT David Irving Suspected of Domestic Violence

Jess Haynie

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David Irving

[4/24/18 UPDATE: Irving's accuser has since recanted with police. However, the NFL could still investigate under their domestic violence policy.]

ORIGINAL STORY

Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman David Irving is under investigation by Frisco, TX police for charges of domestic violence, according to a report by Jobin Panicker of WFAA-ABC in Dallas.

The following was tweeted from Panicker's account not long ago:

Jobin Panicker on Twitter

BREAKING @FriscoPD confirms it is investigating serious allegations against Cowboys player David Irving. No arrests. Assault-Bodily Injury, Unlawful Restraint, & Assault-Impeding Breath and Circulation @wfaa

Jobin Panicker on Twitter

BREAKING @FriscoPD confirms allegations made against Cowboys player David Irving were reported on April 22nd. At two separate times: 5pm & 10pm. Allegations made by girlfriend @wfaa

The veracity of the accusations are certainly not ours to judge, but other recent events on Irving's social suggest he is in the middle of a breakup with his girlfriend. Posts early this morning on his Twitter account appeared to be from an unauthorized user, and David later posted on both Twitter and Instagram that someone had hacked him.

Furthermore, Irving shared that he was already taking steps due to the volatile situation.

David Ja Rodd Irving on Twitter

@DCBlueStar Changed the locks yesterday

While personal lives should stay that way, Cowboys fans are understandably concerned after what happened last year with Ezekiel Elliott. As we saw then, Roger Goodell's "justice" system allows for just an accusation to lead to a suspension. There is no burden of proof on the accuser.

And as in that case, even if the police dismiss the allegation, the NFL can still pursue the matter under the personal conduct and domestic violence policies.

It would be nice to just say "let the process play out," but the NFL commissioner doesn't hold himself to that standard. Therefore, we have to report this as it could mean consequences for David Irving and the Dallas Cowboys no matter how legitimate the claims are.


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Jaylon Smith Practicing Without AFO Brace

John Williams

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Jaylon Smith Voted Cowboys' Ed Block Courage Award Winner 1

A lot of the talk circling the Dallas Cowboys and the NFL Draft is the need for the Cowboys to draft a linebacker as insurance to Sean Lee and Jaylon Smith's injury issues.

One of the questions, Sean Lee, will always be a question. When he's on the field, he's as good a linebacker as there is in the NFL. In 2016, he finally got in a near full season and rewarded the Dallas Cowboys with an All-Pro season that led the team to the playoffs. Talent has never been the issue with Lee. Keeping him on the field has been.

Jaylon Smith's question isn't his health as much as it is his recovery. The surgery to repair his ACL and MCL that he suffered at the end of his final season at Notre Dame was considered a success. There was a caveat, however, that there was no telling how much functionality would return because of the massive nerve injury that occurred.

Last year, Jaylon Smith actually played football games. No small step. In some games he made some plays and in other games, it was clear that he was still struggling with changing directions and running with receivers and running backs in coverage.

Time is Jaylon's biggest ally and another offseason removed from his injury should only help him get stronger and more confident in his recovering knee.

Lost in all of the Dez Bryant hoopla was a beautiful little nugget that Jaylon Smith teased Cowboys Nation with last week.

Jaylon provided a great look at his training regimen on the first day of team workouts and if you look closely, you'll see with a Clear Eye View that Jaylon Smith isn't wearing a brace, tape, or any other kind of support. On his knee or foot.

Jaylon Smith on Twitter

Focused vision, Determined belief, Earned dreams. #ClearEyeView

Remember that even after Jaylon was playing and practicing without a knee brace, he was still requiring an AFO brace to help with his foot drop.

Oh, how much one offseason can change things.

Mike Fisher, now of 247Sports.com, quoted Smith as saying, "I have more power and more flexibility now. And the dropfoot (issue) is fading. Absolutely!'' over on Scout.com, and there was this:

"As our colleague Bryan Broaddus has previously noted, it does seem that some of the testing is behind him, that the nerve is regenerating, that the repaired knee is stronger than ever and that more improvement is ahead of him. Smith's 6-2, 245-pound body is about as sculpted as is imaginable. His mind is sculpted, too, the result of his faith and his intellect and his personality and more. He suggests now that more improvement is inevitable, and that includes the medical improvement that is now, to him, simply "a matter of timing.'''

Mike Fisher - 105.3 The Fan and 247Sports.com

There is still a lot of hope around The Star and Cowboys Nation that Jaylon Smith can return to the All-American form that was projecting him as a top-five talent in the 2016 NFL Draft. If he's healthy and moving with better lateral movement and agility than he was in 2017, that's a huge step forward for Jaylon Smith and the Dallas Cowboys.

The progression of his knee and his confidence in said knee is going to be a huge determining factor in Dallas' plans to draft a linebacker. If they feel confident that he will be a more functional linebacker in 2018 than he was in 2017, then perhaps they could wait until day two or three to address the linebacker position.

We can't fully know their intentions as we get closer to draft day. How they address the linebacker position in the 2018 NFL Draft could give us an excellent indication of how they feel about Jaylon Smith's progression.

What we do know is that Jaylon Smith will never give up working toward being an elite middle linebacker. Let's hope he can realize his dreams. Everyone will be better for it.


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