If you're anything like me, then you've been itching to get a look at Tony Romo on the field this year. Back injuries are no joke, often requiring many months of rehab and becoming a permanent status for a player. Add to it that Romo is just a few years shy of retirement age.
We know that this team has a serviceable backup in Brandon Weeden, possibly even good - not great - after the San Diego performance, but serviceable is a horrifying thought for a quarterback on a team with the kind of defensive hurdles this team faces in 2014. Most of the optimism surrounding this team's record predictions has a heart set on the high-scoring offense they're quite capable of being. So what happens if Romo doesn't hold up?
Well folks, we're about to find out.
Todd Archer, at ESPN.com reports that #9 will make his 2014 debut this Saturday in Arlington against the Baltimore Ravens.
"I think you have to play in the preseason," Romo said. "Obviously, some people can't, but I do know from my perspective, this game is not just something where you can show up and think that you can do it." - Todd Archer, ESPN.com.
Archer says that, as of Tuesday, head coach Jason Garrett wouldn't commit to playing Romo against Baltimore, but there is some precedence.
"Coach Jason Garrett did not commit to Romo playing against the Ravens when asked earlier Tuesday, but last year Romo skipped the Cowboys' first preseason game and saw action in two series in the second game." - Todd Archer, ESPN.com.
And that's exactly what I'm expecting to see out of Romo - a series or two. I also expect more of the first-teamers to get on the field with Romo, and then with Weeden to get a better look at how he's doing. I hate to say it, because of what it means for the season if it were to happen, but at this point, Weeden's development in the new system has far too much potential to bear the weight of the season to not vet him thoroughly.
Then again, this may just be the wishful thinking of a quarterback desperate to prove himself after the latest in a string of injuries the last five years. We'll see on Saturday.
Dallas Cowboys Sign LB Joe Thomas to 2 Year Deal
At long last, the Dallas Cowboys have their first free agent addition of this offseason. Having lost starters Jonathan Cooper and Anthony Hitchens at left guard and linebacker respectively, the team has added depth at LB with Joe Thomas signing a two-year deal.
The 2018 season will actually mark Joe Thomas' second stint with the Dallas Cowboys, as he was signed to their practice squad in 2015. The team that signed Thomas out of South Carolina State following the 2014 draft, the Green Bay Packers, added Thomas back to their active roster for the 2015 season.
Source: Cowboys have agreed to a 2-year deal with free agent LB Joe Thomas. He visited the Cowboys today. Thomas has played in 42 games over the last three seasons with the Packers. He had a career-high 70 tackles in 2016.
Thomas has spent the last three seasons starting eight games for the Packers, recording 70 tackles and an interception in 2016.
A contingency plan of Sean Lee and Jaylon Smith carrying the Cowboys for 16 games at LB requires adequate depth, which is exactly what the Cowboys are typically in the market for come free agency. Waiting longer than usual to make their first splash, the Cowboys absolutely need an addition like Thomas to perform better than last year's FA class.
Used in sub packages by the Packers while also playing special teams - where the Cowboys have lost core players in Keith Smith and Kyle Wilber - Thomas will have a great chance to impress two new Dallas coaches in Ben Bloom and Keith O'Quinn.
Cowboys Trade for FB Jamize Olawale from Raiders
Less than a week after the Cowboys lost fullback Keith Smith to the Raiders in free agency, the two teams have worked out a trade to send FB Jamize Olawale from Oakland to Dallas.
Fullback trade! The #Raiders are sending FB Jamize Olawale to the #Cowboys, sources say. Dallas has its fullback, one who was with Oakland since 2012.
To facilitate the trade, the Cowboys will send their fifth-round pick (173rd overall) to the Raiders for their sixth-round pick (192nd), moving back just 19 spots.
In return, Dallas not only brings in a veteran replacement at FB but a player they already know.
Jamize Olawale was an undrafted rookie free agent of the Cowboys in 2012. Despite a strong showing in that preseason, Dallas did not have room for him on the roster. He was on the team's practice squad until December, when Oakland poached him.
Since then, Olawale has been a regular roleplayer in the Raiders' offense. He's missed just six games since 2013.
Jamize brings more offensive firepower to the FB position than Keith Smith had. He's scored at least one touchdown in each of the last three seasons. He can be effective both running and receiving.
Through the trade, Dallas picks up the final year of Olawale's current contract. It calls for a $1.5 million base salary in 2018.
Dallas Cowboys to Re-Sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur for 2018
Continuity is the key to good special teams play in the NFL. Already losing long-time Special Teams Coordinator Rich Bisaccia to the Raiders - who promptly snatched ST aces Keith Smith and Kyle Wilber in free agency - the Dallas Cowboys have announced their intentions to re-sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur for the 2018 season.
Returning on a one-year deal, the fan favorite Ladouceur will be back to do what he does best in cleanly executing almost every special teams snap for Chris Jones or Dan Bailey to handle.
Long snapper L.P. Ladouceur will re-sign with the Cowboys on Monday, according to sources, on a one-year deal. He will be in his 14th season with the franchise. Only Jason Witten, Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Bill Bates and Mark Tuinei will have more years of... https://t.co/yTQbMYyrIv
While Jones has improved as the Cowboys' punter with each passing season, Kicker Dan Bailey actually enters 2018 as another question mark on this unit. With the general belief around the team being that Bailey will be just fine moving forward, the Cowboys will no longer have to worry about who handles long snaps next year either.
L.P. Ladouceur is back in the silver and blue, and in this moment, everything can be alright with the world.
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