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Randy Gregory: I’m Disappointed, Plain & Simple

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Cowboys Blog - Randy Gregory, I am Disappointed. Plain and Simple 4

Well look at what we got here.

Randy Gregory has been suspended for the first four games of the 2016 season for violating the league's substance abuse policy.

Now, you can argue about whether marijuana should be legal or not. You can argue about whether the league has a ridiculous substance abuse policy. Guess what, I am not here to argue about either and I think this instance is about more than abusing a substance.

For Randy Gregory to do this really stings. I really believed that this was behind him. I thought that this was a good kid who made a dumb mistake and was ready to use it as motivation to become great.

Listen to his call with Jerry Jones after he was drafted. Listen to everything Randy Gregory said after being selected by the Dallas Cowboys in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

This looked like a kid who realized his mistake and was so thankful of the Cowboys organization for taking the chance on him. He seemed like he was going to be made into a monster. The Cowboys slapped the historic number 94 on his back as if to say "Randy...we believe in you and we have your back."

Cowboys Blog - Randy Gregory, I am Disappointed. Plain and Simple

Randy Gregory was given the 94 and I am not happy with what he has done with it

The Cowboys held up their end. They took the chance on a troubled kid. They backed it up by putting that number on his back. They said all the right things about him publicly and stuck their neck out for him.

This is how Randy Gregory repays this organization?

This is simply inexcusable. This basically says that Randy Gregory cares more about whatever substance he absused than he does about his professional career, his ability to make a lot of money, the Dallas Cowboys organization and the game of football.

It was made quite simple for him. There were two options, 1. Play football, make a lot of money and have a lot of success for a team that stuck their neck out for you, or 2. Continue to use banned substances.

Randy Gregory obviously chose the second option.

Now what?

The Cowboys still have Randy Gregory obviously, and he still has tremendous talent. Gregory can still participate in all offseason work as well as the preseason, so he can continue to work on his game.

Cowboys Blog - Randy Gregory, I am Disappointed. Plain and Simple 2

Randy Gregory still has a career in front of him, but you can't force a player to get it

Gregory will miss a quarter of the 2016 Cowboys season, which obviously really hurts. The defensive end position is now a position of major need.

Randy Gregory using this substance not only hurt himself, but it hurt 52 other men. His teammates should be disgusted. He hurt every member of the Cowboys front office. He hurt every single coach that believed in him.

This was purely selfish and the repercussions are tremendous for the Dallas Cowboys.

Yes, it is four games. Can the Cowboys just simply believe in him now? How could you? You have to prepare as if this will happen again. You have to look into the future of the defensive end position for the Dallas Cowboys down the line.

Randy Gregory now becomes an added bonus rather than a guy you are counting on to be a major part of your team's future.

Cowboys Blog - Randy Gregory, I am Disappointed. Plain and Simple 3

I really hope Randy gets past this and becomes the player he can become

The trickle-down effect will be something to watch. The Cowboys should now enter free agency with a major need at defensive end. Olivier Vernon becomes even more intriguing to me.

You hope they enter the draft with less of a need than the one they have today. You would hate to see them feel like they have to take Joey Bosa at fourth overall if they have a different player ranked higher.

This is something that is just really disappointing. I believed in the Randy Gregory story. I became emotionally attached to the story of a guy making a childish mistake and being determined to right his wrong. I became attached to seeing a team reach out to a player like the Cowboys did with Gregory and the player repaying them by not only staying clean but becoming a dominant player.

While the career of Randy Gregory is far from over, you hope this was the second wake up call that he needed. If not, the Cowboys must look to improve this position long-term.

Regardless...good thing for Demarcus Lawrence.

Cowboys Blog - Randy Gregory, I am Disappointed. Plain and Simple 1

This is Demarcus Lawrence's defensive line. Plain and simple.



I've been blogging about sports and music for almost eight years now. I also work in media relations for a New York sports team, so I understand the bridge between the outlets writing about a team and the team monitoring content. I hope to bring something new to Inside The Star, getting deep into draft work, breakdowns and I always come with a strong and passionate opinion. I'm very active on Twitter, so ask questions, comment on stuff, etc. and I will almost definitely respond to you in some sort of debate!

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3 Comments
  • Ray

    Inexcusable after the club put faith in him. He needs to cut today! He basically gave the middle finger to the team. I had high hopes for him.

  • Randy Martin

    Nick thanks for putting so eloquently how most of us Cowboy fans are feeling. This is much more than just a 4 game suspension. It has huge ripple effects.

  • RJ Ochoa

    Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts, Nick. This was great.

    Sent from my iPhone using Pigskin Hub – Pro Football Forums mobile app

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Cowboys WR Tavon Austin Skipping Surgery, May Return in 2018

Jess Haynie

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Cowboys WR Tavon Austin Skipping Surgery, May Return in 2018

A groin injury sustained last week against Jacksonville won't send Tavon Austin to injured reserve, at least for now. The Dallas Cowboys receiver has elected to forego surgery at this time, giving him a chance to return to action in 2018.

There was concern that Austin could land on IR initially following the Jaguars game, but he sought a second opinion this week. It appears that this new information was enough for Tavon and the Cowboys to decide that surgery can wait.

Rob Phillips on Twitter

Sounds like WR Tavon Austin will not have surgery at this time after getting a second opinion on his groin injury. He could miss a few weeks, however. #cowboyswire

Austin should miss this Sunday's game with the Washington Redskins. He has been the team's punt returner this season and a useful tool on offense, playing mostly receiver but also lining up the backfield at times.

Despite his limited opportunities, Tavon is tied with Cole Beasley for the team lead with two receiving touchdowns in 2018.

How long Austin will remain out is unknown at this time. After the Washington game, Dallas will have their bye week and then host the Tennessee Titans on Monday Night Football.

Both of these are games that the Cowboys, feeling good after a blowout victory over Jacksonville, should be able to win without Austin. But they would certainly like him back for the Week 10 road game with the Philadelphia Eagles.

In Tavon's absence, Cole Beasley will likely field punts. We may see more of Deonte Thompson in the speed routes that Austin ran on offense, though Dallas could also finally see what recently returned Brice Butler has to offer.

With an expiring contract this year, Tavon will likely want to get back soon and trying to improve his stock for the 2019 offseason. Hopefully, he can still have a positive impact on his value and the Cowboys season in the weeks ahead.



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Terrance Williams: Details, Impact of 3-Game Suspension

Jess Haynie

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3 Current Starters Cowboys' Fans Hate, But Shouldn't 1

Terrance Williams was already missing games on injured reserve, but now the Dallas Cowboys receivers is going to lose some money as well. Williams was finally hit with a three-game suspension by the NFL, starting immediately,  for his public intoxication arrest last May.

Dallas placed Terrance on IR in Week 5 just a day before their game against the Houston Texans. Williams had been struggling with a foot issue since the offseason, which included a surgery that he hadn't fully recovered from.

Many were surprised that Williams wasn't suspended to start the season, given that his arrest occurred several months prior. But when charges were eventually dropped after Terrance took part in some required alcohol education courses, it appeared the league might be letting the issue go.

However, as Cowboys fans know all too well, Roger Goodell's NFL operates its own judicial system.

In Williams' case, the suspension will only result in lost game checks. Players still get paid when on IR, but Terrance will lose that amount of his $3.5 million base salary.

Because he can serve the suspension while injured, Terrance will still be eligible to be recalled from injured reserve in December after sitting the mandatory weeks.

The real issue for Williams now is how this event, and his general fall from grace in the Cowboys offense, will affect him in the next offseason.

Did Terrance Williams' Big Game Quiet His Doubters?

Dallas Cowboys WR Terrance Williams

Terrance is in just the second season of a four-year, $17 million contract he signed in 2017. If he's released after this year, Dallas would save $2.25 million of his scheduled $4.75 million cap hit in 2019.

Williams' cap hit isn't the issue by itself. That would be a bargain for a significant contributor in your offense, even if he was just the third receiver.

But Terrance appears to have fallen well below that spot on the depth chart. Cole Beasley, Allen Hurns, and Michael Gallup are the top three receivers these days, and veteran Deonte Thompson has also been getting looks. Dallas also brought back Brice Butler a few weeks ago, though he hasn't really been worked in yet.

Not only that, but the Cowboys will have the option to recall Noah Brown from IR in just a few more weeks. He was one of their more intriguing young prospects prior to getting hurt.

Dallas could let Terrance come back next year to compete, hopefully with full health and less personal baggage. But after six seasons, they may be ready to move on to players with more room to grow.

For now, though, Terrance Williams is out of action and out some money. We'll see what the future holds.



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Report: Austin Heading to IR: Deonte Thompson is the Next Man Up

John Williams

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Wide Receiver Deonte Thompson Making Preseason Debut Vs. Cardinals

Tavon Austin's stint with the Dallas Cowboys has been up and down through six games. He's provided some big play ability on the outside, but hasn't really had the running room on jet sweeps that the Dallas Cowboys would have hoped for when they acquired Austin from the Los Angeles Rams during the 2018 NFL Draft.

Now it's being reported by Brandon George from the Dallas Morning News that Austin may be headed to injured reserve for a groin tear suffered in the Dallas Cowboys week six win over the Jaguars.

Brandon George on Twitter

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said WR Tavon Austin will be getting a second opinion on his injured right groin in the next day or so. He didn't discount possibility of him being placed on injured reserve.

 

Whether Austin goes to injured reserve or not remains to be seen, but we do know that he'll miss week seven and likely won't be able to suit up for a while. Though Austin hasn't been relied upon much, he has been a threat that opposing defenses have had to account for in both the passing and running game. Tavon Austin leaves a bit of a hole.

Enter Deonte Thompson.

Deonte Thompson, who was signed by the Dallas Cowboys this past offseason, hasn't been the same type of rushing threat that Austin has been in his NFL career. Thompson's only carried the ball two times in his career for -5 yards. However, Thompson has some skills that could bode well should the Dallas Cowboys decide to use him in the jet sweep role that Austin is vacating.

He's been a return threat in his NFL career, averaging 24.8 yards per return. He's had returns of 47, 64, and 74 yards. He's also had some good moments running after the catch in his career, though he hasn't gotten many opportunities.

Thompson's a former track athlete and before the 2012 NFL Draft ran a 4.30 40 yard dash. He has the speed and a bit more size than Austin to make some things happen if given the opportunities.

The jet sweep has become an important staple in the Dallas Cowboys offense. Even when they don't hand it off on the sweep, they use it in play action, to set up screens, and even to get the defense thinking about it on direct hand offs to Ezekiel Elliott. They aren't going to want to scrap that part of the playbook just because Austin will be sitting out. Deonte Thompson can be that guy. Much like Marquise Goodwin in San Francisco, Thompson has elite speed.

He's not just football fast. He's fast-fast.

When I was in high school, I played baseball. In the baseball program I was fast. The fastest on the team. That was my game. Infield singles. Stretching doubles to triples. Stealing bases. I was fast. I went out for track my senior season because I thought, "hey I'm fast, let's see what would happen if I ran the 100-meter-dash." I found out really quickly that there is a difference between baseball fast and track fast.

The same applies to football and track. Deonte Thompson is track fast. He's a guy that the Dallas Cowboys need to get the ball to on those jet sweeps to continue to threaten defenses sideline to sideline. When it's working, as we've seen with Lucky Whitehead in the past and Tavon Austin this year, it opens up a lot for the Dallas Cowboys offense.

It's likely that Cole Beasley gets those first jet sweep attempts, and as a trusted veteran for the Dallas Cowboys, he probably should. But, if Jason Garrett and Scott Linehan want to continue to use the jet sweep to the offense's maximum benefit, they need to start showing it with Deonte Thompson. He has the speed to get to the corner and take it to the end zone from any where on the field.

Here's an example of what Thompson can do with the ball in his hands.

NFL on Twitter

109 YARDS TO THE HOUSE!!! Deonte Thompson returns the missed field goal and runs it all the way back for a @ChicagoBears TD! #CHIvsAZ https://t.co/k9IfkZMoIY

 

With Tavon Austin set to be out -- possibly for the season -- it's time to see what Deonte Thompson can do. The Dallas Cowboys need to get a win here to get above .500 for the first time this season and set themselves up to make a run at the divisional crown. Deonte Thompson's ability with the ball in his hands will give them a good opportunity to do just that.



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