It really is amazing that Tim Lincecum has ever thrown a pitch without it being intercepted by Sean Lee.
Allow me to explain.
On Sunday evening the Pro Bowl for the 2015 NFL season took place. The starting quarterback for "Team Rice" was Eli Manning. Our favorite awkward face'd Giant tossed a pass that was tipped and fell right into the arms of Sean Lee.
As if it wasn't symbolic enough that the Dallas Cowboys trump the New York Giants, the residents of the Big Apple just couldn't leave Hawaii without embarrassing themselves just a little but further.
On a fake extra point, this is the Pro Bowl to be fair, Team Rice Kicker Josh Brown (another proud New York Giant) did his best Eli impersonation... literally.
Josh showed the world why his involvement with professional football revolves around the body part as far away from his arm as possible when he went full Eli and threw an interception to Sean Lee.
Lesson of the day? Sean Lee will intercept any Giant: New York, San Francisco, fictional, whatever. He owns them.
Sean Lee owned a lot of people in 2015. He set a career high in tackles with 76 and, despite an "always injured" reputation, started 14 games for the Dallas Cowboys.
Oh and he did all of that after missing the entire 2014 season with a torn ACL (hence the reputation).
"The General" put an exclamation point on his 2015 with his Double Giant Interception (we call that a DGI here at ITS, my name is RJ so I like acronyms a lot...) in the Pro Bowl, but it was no anomaly for the season. Sean's performance merits some serious consideration for an award that is literally designated for players who have a great year after some type of trial... the NFL's Comeback Player Of The Year.
Now the overwhelming favorite to win the CPOY is Eric Berry of the Kansas City Chiefs. Berry battled his way back onto the playing field from Hodgkin's Lymphoma. The air that Berry breathes in and out every second is a true testament to why he should win this award, throw in his performance in 2015 and it's a lock. I won't argue that.
All due respect to Eric Berry, if not for him would this be Sean Lee's to lose? The national media would, hypocritically, tell you that perhaps Adrian Peterson is worthy of winning it. Peterson did lead the league in rushing yards after missing a majority of 2014 (thanks to some pretty severe child abuse charges that people have conveniently forgotten), and from a strictly football perspective that's obviously impressive.
Arizona's Carson Palmer rebounded from the exact same injury that Sean Lee had, and Lee's Penn State teammate NaVorro Bowman missed all of 2014 with a torn ACL and MCL. Both are worthy nominees, but would they top Lee?
It's hard to compare Palmer to either equally given that his influence on a game is much larger, but Bowman did lead the NFL in tackles (and Lee significantly). Bowman and Lee tied for the season in sacks (2.5 each), but Lee has him beat in the interceptions category (a whopper of a lead... 1-0).
When considering things fully this award rightfully belongs to Eric Berry, and if it weren't him it'd be hard to argue against NaVorro Bowman. All I'm saying is Sean Lee deserves some love. He's certainly in the top five for the award and deserves to at least be a nominee during NFL Honors on Saturday night. Sean was a big reason why the Cowboys were competitive when they were and Cowboys Nation wants him honored in any way that he can be for that effort.
Cowboys Will Tag DeMarcus Lawrence; What’s the Plan?
February 20 is an important day for NFL clubs this year. Why? It's the first day in which teams can franchise tag any player. Since 2015, when the Dallas Cowboys tagged Dez Bryant before they were able to work out a long-term deal, Jerry Jones & Co. haven't used the franchise tag. In 2018, though, that will change.
DeMarcus Lawrence just played his best season yet in 2017, and he's looking to get paid big time. Through three years, he had been able to rack up nine sacks, 52 tackles and three forced fumbles. In just 2017, he sacked opposing quarterbacks 14.5 times, had 35 tackles and managed to force four fumbles.
Not only did Lawrence look like an elite pass rusher, but he also improved as a run defender a lot. The Cowboys have been looking for a "War Daddy" for a long, long time and Lawrence seems to be the answer for this football team.
After such a big year, one would expect the Cowboys to sign him to a multi-year enormous contract. But there's a catch. Lawrence failed to remain healthy early in his career and really didn't make as much of an impact until last season.
There's no question that D-Law will be wearing a star come the 2018 NFL season, but will he be doing it under a long-term deal or under a franchise tag?
Cowboys will not place franchise tag on DeMarcus Lawrence tomorrow as that window opens but will do so by March 6 w/ understanding the goal is to reach a long-term deal. Both sides have until July 16 to make that happen.
For now, according to David Moore from Dallas Morning News, the Cowboys will franchise tag Lawrence with the objective of getting a deal done in July. The tag however, is not expected to be placed as soon as possible.
In 2015, the Cowboys didn't place the franchise tag on Dez Bryant until the final deadline day. This year's deadline is March 6th, so it may be two weeks before they make it official with DeMarcus Lawrence. #CowboysNation #DallasCowboys
What would franchise tagging DeMarcus Lawrence mean for this team?
First of all, they'd make sure he doesn't hit free agency in March. This gives the front office time to get to work and restructure players' contracts if they have to in order to open up as much cap space as they can before giving him a deal.
It's worth mentioning as well, cap savings from players who are designated as post-June 1 cuts will already be available. If you want to be more familiarized with the Cowboys' cap situation, I highly recommend you read John Williams' deep dive on the matter.
It'll continue to be a very interesting story for this offseason, as handing a franchise tag to a player tends to become a non-friendly situation for both parties. Let's hope that's not the case for the Cowboys and Lawrence this year and that everything works out fine.
Here at Inside The Star, we'll continue updating you and the rest of Cowboys Nation throughout the offseason.
Watch: Cowboys LB Jaylon Smith Goes Bowling for First Time Since College Injury
Dallas Cowboys Linebacker Jaylon Smith did not just defy all odds and return to normalcy in 2017, starting as the Cowboys' middle linebacker for a full 16 games. He became one of the team's and NFL's brightest success stories, earning the right to celebrate everyday activities returning to his life - as football did this season.
This is exactly what Jaylon Smith did on Twitter Friday afternoon, posting a Snapchat video of himself bowling. The caption on Twitter adds that Smith was enjoying his time at the lanes for the first time in two years.
It was January 1st, 2016 when Jaylon Smith's injury in the Fiesta Bowl against Notre Dame changed his outlook forever. In that moment, Smith went from a projected top ten pick in the 2016 NFL Draft to a LB that would need a team to take a chance on him - and be patient.
The Dallas Cowboys proved to be that team, using the 34th overall pick on the Notre Dame star and supporting his efforts to return to the field from day one. The entire Cowboys' organization was rewarded by Smith remarkably playing every game this season, inspired by his constant determination to do just that.
So, a normal offseason for Jaylon Smith is anything but right now. Still battling the drop foot condition (one that is reportedly healing well and "fading") which limits his movement ability in the lower body, Smith is a normal Dallas Cowboys football player from this point forward.
He can say he's already defined all odds, can expect to take an even bigger stride forward in 2018, and Jaylon Smith can go bowling again. You can't help but be happy for #54.
Dak Prescott’s Accuracy Stands Out in Final 2017 Stats
2017 was a season that left the Dallas Cowboys with a ton of questions to think about. Dez Bryant's contract, Sean Lee and Tyron Smith's availability, and the future of DeMarcus Lawrence and David Irving are some of those questions.
But there's another more pressing question for the Cowboys. How can they get the most out of Quarterback Dak Prescott and avoid another struggling year for him?
Also, what if he has another rough year? At what point does quarterback become a position that needs to be evaluated if he continues to struggle?
Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that will be the case. In fact, I have a lot of faith in Dak. I think he's shown a lot to be excited about and I definitely believe there's a "quarterback curve" in the NFL. Hopefully, #4 finds a way to get back on track in 2018.
A reason to be optimistic about Prescott's future is an impressive stat from NFL Next Gen Stats. Turns out, Dak Prescott ranked first in the NFL in "tight window throws" completion percentage with 45.8%.
According to Matt Harmon from NFL.com, a "tight window throw" is defined as a pass in which the intended receiver has less than a yard of separation from the defender.
Dak Prescott is far from a perfect quarterback and he's constantly bashed about his throwing accuracy. Just recently, he took part in a passing competition with David Carr before the NFL Honors and well... it's fair to say Carr completely beat him.
David Carr 6, Dak Prescott 1 pic.twitter.com/rV532Q3Cob
— uSTADIUM (@uSTADIUM) 6 de febrero de 2018
Cowboys Twitter was anything but forgiving for the young quarterback, but at the end of the day, I'm not sure a casual passing competition at an event like that one is the way you judge an NFL starting quarterback who has a 22-10 record in his career.
Dak has a long way to go before being considered an excellent quarterback in the league, but a bad season like 2017 doesn't mean it's the end of his career and that the Dallas Cowboys should start Cooper Rush over him.
It's not the first quarterback who struggles one year and he won't be the last one to bounce back from one. As of right now, Dak Prescott rightfully is the Dallas Cowboys QB1. Hopefully he has a better year next season.
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