Connect with us

Player News

Orlando Scandrick Is A Shadow Of His Former Self

Brian Martin

Published

on

Cowboys Headlines - Is Orlando Scandrick A Player In His Decline?

The Dallas Cowboys are just two games into their 2016 season and unfortunately there are several players not living up to the teams, fans, or even their own expectations. It's sad I know, but unfortunately factual.

This is especially true for arguably the Cowboys best cornerback, Orlando Scandrick.

If you are anything like me, then you were really looking forward to seeing Scandrick back on the field this year after missing the entire 2015 season with a torn ACL and MCL knee injury.

Personally, I was so excited about Orlando Scandrick's return that I wrote an article back in May about how I thought he would be the key to success for the Cowboys defense.

Unfortunately, things haven't quite gone Scandrick's way so far in 2016. So much so that he looks like a shadow of his former self.

Now, I'm not saying that he is starting to decline as a player, although that may be happening. What I am saying is that he doesn't look nearly like the player the he did prior to his 2015 knee injury.

Scandrick's problems on the field this year mostly have to do with the reoccurring injuries that he has been battling through.Cowboys Headlines - Orlando Scandrick Is A Shadow Of His Former Self

We saw him leave the game briefly in Week 1 against the New York Giants with a tweaked hamstring, only to return a little later and play through the injury.

Despite the lingering effects of a tweaked hamstring, he still managed to battle through the discomfort and help his team beat the division rival Washington Redskins, thus helping the Dallas Cowboys avoid a 0-2 start.

Unfortunately, the word on the street is that Orlando Scandrick has not practiced all week  and is dealing with not one, but two strained hamstrings. Double Whammy Hammy!?

This is definitely concerning news considering a CB depends on their speed and change of direction abilities to cover wide receivers all over the field in the NFL.

Quarterbacks at this level are a lot like sharks, and if they smell blood in the water they know exactly where to attack. So, you know defensive coordinators and quarterbacks around the league are well aware that #32 is less than 100%.

Fortunately, the Dallas Cowboys' opponent with this week is dealing with their own rash of injuries and this could possibly be the closest to a give me game that the Cowboys could ask for all season.

The Chicago Bears have an abundance of players injured on both sides of the ball and that could allow the Cowboys to sit Scandrick this game in hopes that another week of rest will allow him to get back closer to 100%.

I know I'm not the one making the decisions, but I think I would be extremely cautious in regards of how I would handle Scandrick's hamstring injuries.

He didn't really get the benefit of the off-season to knock off the rust or get into "football shape". The Cowboys coaching/training staff decided it would be better to take the cautious approach and I think that is exactly what they should do now.

Remember, the 2016 season has just started and there is a lot of football ahead of us.

If Orlando Scandrick continues to miss practice I don't think I would suit him up at all, but the Cowboys may decide to keep him on the active roster for the Bears game Sunday night and play him only in an emergency situation.

Who knows, maybe Scandrick can pull a Peter Pan and catch his shadow prior to the 2015 knee injury?

Whatever happens, we have to be thinking of the long-term goal and that requires doing what is best for not only #32, but the entire team.

Do you agree or disagree?

Let me hear what you think in the comment section below.



Level C2/C3 quadriplegic. College graduate with a bachelors degree in sports and health sciences-concentration sports management. Sports enthusiast. Dallas Cowboys fanatic. Lover of life with a glass half-full point of view.

Advertisement
Comments

Player News

BREAKING: Cowboys TE Rico Gathers Receives One-Game Suspension

Jess Haynie

Published

on

Rico Gathers

Tight End Rico Gathers already had an uphill climb to return to the Dallas Cowboys' 53-man roster in 2019. But that climb just got even steeper; the NFL handed down a one-game suspension to Gathers today for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy.

If he does make the team this year, with Dallas or anyone else, Rico will have to sit out Week One of the season without pay.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

Cowboys TE Rico Gathers is suspended without pay for the first game of the 2019 regular season for violating the NFL's policy and program on substances of abuse. This is from his arrest in 2018 for marijuana possession.

Gathers' chances of returning in 2019 were already hurt by Jason Witten's reversed retirement. He dropped to fourth on the TE depth chart behind Witten, Blake Jarwin, and Dalton Schultz, and Dallas only kept three tight ends last year.

The Cowboys also added Codey McElroy as a developmental player during the offseason.

While the suspension is news, the incident that led to it is not. Dallas already knew about the arrest, which occurred in early September of 2018, and have kept Gathers around up until now.

The NFL's substance abuse system is pretty formulaic, so the Cowboys likely anticipated this suspension all along. This may not change anything about how they value Rico Gathers for the 2019 season.

Nevertheless, a player who can't help you in Week One and is a liability for ever longer suspensions down the road is definitely a red flag against Gathers' job security.



Continue Reading

Player News

Antwaun Woods: Cowboys DT is Just Getting Started

Matthew Lenix

Published

on

Antwaun Woods is just getting started

Antwaun Woods went undrafted in 2016 coming out of USC. After two years with the Tennessee Titans, he would only see one game of action. In May of 2018, the Cowboys signed Woods to a two-year contract worth 1.05 million. Probably seen as nothing more than a practice squad guy, Woods would quickly show he was much more than that.

The newly acquired Woods started his climb to stardom in Oxnard during training camp, and not for making plays. One day during practice he got into a friendly game of fisticuffs with All-Pro Center Travis Frederick. The team even posted the video on social media, which had fans buzzing and wanting to know who he was.

All-Pro Running Back Ezekiel Elliott echoed those thoughts when he saw Woods during camp. "Honestly, when we first got him, we were like, 'Who is this guy?'. He was giving Travis Frederick, one of our best players, hell all camp. Just trying to figure out where this guy came from," Elliott said.

Once the regular season started it was clear the Cowboys had found a hidden gem. Although the sack numbers won't dazzle you, seeing as he only registered 1.5, you could forget about running the ball anywhere near him. Woods has amazing quickness for a 300 pounder which allows him to extend his arms before offensive lineman can get a hand on him.

How significant is that? It becomes that much easier to bull rush and blow running plays up in the backfield.

When you can get your hands on an offensive lineman immediately when the ball is snapped, he's basically under your control. You can move him around like a puppet on a string. Essential for a 1-technique nose tackle. With that being said, there should be no surprise the Cowboys finished fifth against the run in 2018 with Woods manning the middle.

Woods draws a lot of double teams, and he handles them well. Having the ability to take on multiple linemen frees up your other playmakers. As the anchor in the middle, Woods made life a lot easier for not only his fellow defensive linemen but the team's two young star Linebackers Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch. Allowing them to roam freely like Lions in the Serengeti makes running backs essentially Zebra's carrying the ball, cooked food. So much so that both tallied over 120 tackles and were the only teammates in the NFL to rank in the top 15 in that category.

There's nothing but upside with Antwaun Woods. He's only had 18 games of experience in three years. He's already a stud, but with limited snaps, it can only mean he'll be even more formidable going forward.

The Cowboys have a loaded defensive lineman group with around 15 bodies, plenty of competition. All signs point to him remaining the starter, but it's not guaranteed. Even with that being said I don't expect a complacency from Woods, especially with DeMarcus Lawrence and Robert Quinn looking like the only sure starters on the defensive line. Plus this is a contract year for him, so you know he'll be even more motivated as he tries to maximize his dollars. We've only seen the tip of the iceberg from this raw talent, setting up for a potential breakout year for him in 2019.



Continue Reading

Player News

Cedrick Wilson: Cowboys WR Could Shine After a Year Off

Matthew Lenix

Published

on

Cedrick Wilson could shine after a year off

The departure of Cole Beasley to Buffalo via free agency in March left a hole at the slot receiver position in Dallas. The team signed veteran Randall Cobb about a week later, but only to a one year deal. Names like Tavon Austin and Allen Hurns along with Cobb are looked at as the replacement for Beasley but don't forget about Cedrick Wilson.

Selected in the sixth round in 2018, Wilson was coming off an impressive and highly productive two-year career at Boise State. Tallying 139 receptions for 2,640 yards and 18 touchdowns in just 26 games.

When OTA's began last season, the rookie was already turning heads with his route running, ability to create separation and athleticism, but unfortunately, disaster happened not long afterward. Wilson would suffer a shoulder injury that placed him on injured reserve for 2018, the same shoulder he had issues with in college. A not so fairy tale beginning to an NFL career.

Although his time on the field was short-lived last summer, he definitely caught the eye of wide receivers coach Sanjay Lal.

"Ced's a savvy, smart football player. He picks things up really well. He applies them to the field. In terms of technique, he's one of the best if you watch him. His stance and start is really good. He comes off the ball with low pad level. He's eating up ground and then has a nack to make a big play over the top on a big post," Lal said.

Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup and Randall Cobb make up a very formidable receiving core, and adding a healthy Wilson to that could work wonders. His experience on the outside and the slot gives offensive coordinator Kellen Moore plenty of options. Slot receivers are usually harder to bump off the line with the extra few yards of cushion they get, giving them more options route wise seeing as they can go inside or out a lot easier than outside receivers. That's where Wilson's supreme route running can come into play. Also, with his ability to separate on the outside and beat corners deep, you can play him opposite Amari Cooper and put Cobb in the slot with a combination of either Gallup, Austin or Hurns in a four-wide receiver set, the possibilities are endless.

A setback can be a blessing in disguise if approached in the right manner. Wilson hasn't let the year off derail his focus on what he's trying to do in Dallas.

"Coming back off the rehab was tough in general. But definitely a year of just seeing how everything goes, the speed is definitely slowing down. Just getting back in the playbook and learning from older guys of what I need to do and doing what the coaches expect of me," Wilson said.

The competition won't be easy for Wilson, though, as other young up and coming receivers are fighting for roster spots as well. UDFA's (Undrafted Free Agents) Jon'Vea Johnson and Jalen Guyton will also be fighting for snaps during mini-camp, with the former already making waves during OTA's. Reggie Davis has also turned a few heads in the summer, a fellow UDFA himself trying to find a home after bouncing around the league between four different teams since 2017.

It's all about health for Cedrick Wilson at this point. Can his shoulder hold up enough to allow his skill set to make a contribution to the Cowboys in 2019? The talent is there, along with the praises of his position coach, now it'll be interesting to see if this potential diamond in the rough can shine under the bright lights of AT&T Stadium.



Continue Reading



Enjoy 40% commissions on officially licensed products as a FanPrint affiliate. You can even make your own, fully licensed Cowboys and player designs! Get started here

Trending