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What Was Lost On Pacman Jones?

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Adam Pacman Jones

As you have all heard by now I am sure, the Pac-Man experiment is officially over! Jerry and Cowboy bashing is at it’s peak now! My question is why? I was highly in favor of bringing him here, as were many Cowboy followers. We all new the risks involved with this deal, so why when the deal does not work out (like we all new it would) are we now going to bash brass for pulling the trigger? Pac-Man did not destroy the locker room, losing and mentally weak individuals destroyed this locker room.

This was a very worthwhile opportunity that the Cowboys had to take a chance on. Unfortunately it did not work out! The Cowboys and Jerry Jones had everything to gain and nothing to lose in this deal. Lets look at what Dallas gave up to get Jones.The Cowboys sent a 4th round pick in last years draft and that is it. The Cowboys signed Jones to a 4 year 13.3 million contract with oh by the way no guaranteed money plus will receive a 5th round pick from Tennessee this year. So when the Cowboys release him they will have a salary cap hit of ZERO! Yes I know what your thinking, we wasted a 4th round pick on him, well lets see who was available in that spot.

Tennessee used that pick and drafted LaVelle Hawkins a 5’11” 187lbs. WR from California. Here is his stats from the year. Looks like he was slightly better than Pacman in Kick off returns (that is not saying much) and had very little to do with the offense. With the 28th pick the Colts selected Jacob Tamme a 6’3″ 236lbs. TE from Kentucky and here is what he did this year. He was not an option for us as we had already drafted Bennett. Then St.Louis with the 29th pick selected Keenan Burton a 6’0″ 201lbs. WR from Kentucky. Here are his stats on the year. Nothing to get overly excited about and lets be honest he was in the perfect place to play, and only managed to get into 11 games. The next two players selected were a Johnathan Wilhite a DB from Auburn, and Tony Hills an OT from Texas. Here are Wilhite’s numbers and Hills was on the practice squad all year. Also the Cowboys will even have a million dollars more to work with under the 2009 salary cap due to cutting Adam Jones! So when you boil this thing down, Jerry Jones and the Cowboys took a very calculated chance on a bonehead to try and make this team better. Is this not what we all want? Do we not all wish for our teams to do everything they can to make the team better?

If, and I realize that was a huge if, but if he had of straightened up and kept his nose clean. He would have been able to play all year long, and our secondary would have been better! Is he a dominant corner? NO, but he can play! He did lead the team in pass deflections. He was an awful punt returner this year, that can partially be contributed to how terrible the special teams units were.

I have heard that the outlook people have on the Cowboys is that they will take a chance on anyone, no matter the character, who COULD help them win games! This is said as a bad mark against them. I strongly disagree! I want my teams to bring in anyone who can help win games. I do not care one bit about what kind of person they are. Michael Irvin was one of the greatest receivers the Cowboys have ever had, but the guy also STABBED HIS TEAMMATE IN THE NECK! No one cared because the Cowboys were winning games! You can not have it both ways, either you want to win and will accept whoever and whatever they do to win or you want to win with only NICE GUYS!

Jerry should be commended on the way he approached this deal, not ridiculed! You and I all asked for serious upgrades to the secondary and Jerry delivered. He drafted exceptionally well, and then took a calculated risk on a possible impact player! What else do you want? The deal did not work and now he is gone! Its over let it go! Jerry gets blasted for every move he makes no matter how good or bad it is, and its ridiculous. I will be the first to admit he has done some stupid things, but lets give the guy some credit too, he has always learned from his mistakes and at least attempted to make them right. It is amazing to me that in the 20 years that Jerry has owned the team he has not done one thing right! Everything good done here since he has owned the team has been because of someone else and in spite of Jerry. This is completely untrue, and very unfair! Jimmy Johnson was brought here by Jerry and had success in large part thanks to Jerry. Jimmy was the one who was preaching team first to the players and coaches. Then when an opportunity came up for one of his coaches to interview for a head coaching job, simply pushed them aside and interviewed for the job himself behind everyone’s back. Jimmy is the one who chose to leave! Jerry did not make him leave! Yet Jerry is the one blamed for the demise of the team. Jerry hires Bill Parcells and let go of the steering wheel more than he ever has before, and the team remains average and he still takes all the blame! I hate to tell you all this but this team that we have now was built by Bill Parcells, character flaws and all, minus T.O. So all the complaining we do about players on this team having a lack of heart and motor, should be directed more towards Bill rather than Jerry.

These players are highly skilled but are mentally weak and will only play for someone who treats them like trash. Wait a minute that’s right they would not play for that guy either! This collection of players have never played better than they did last year for Wade Phillips, yet he and Jerry are blasted for it! WAKE UP! Some of these guys will never be more than they are right now! So thank the greatest talent evaluator to ever walk the earth for that, don’t blame Jerry!

This was a good move by the Cowboys and Jerry Jones that did not work out. Time to move on and continue to work on the problems. This is what Jerry will do, I have no doubt in my mind about that. I also have no doubt that everyone will continue to blame Jerry. He will never gain the respect of the Cowboy fans, and that is a shame.

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Dallas Cowboys

Cowboys Hire Longtime Bengals OL Coach Paul Alexander

Kevin Brady

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Cowboys Hire Longtime Bengals OL Coach Paul Alexander

Thus far the 2018 offseason has brought a plethora of change to the Dallas Cowboys coaching staff, especially on the offensive side of the ball. Now it is being reported the Cowboys have hired a brand new offensive line coach, former Cincinnati Bengals’ Offensive Line Coach Paul Alexander.

Alex Marvez on Twitter

Source tells @sportingnews that Paul Alexander hired as new @dallascowboys offensive line coach

Alexander coached with the Bengals for over 20 years, and replaces the same man in Dallas who replaces him in Cincinnati, Frank Pollack. Alexander has also been the Bengals assistant head coach since 2003.

The Cowboys recently lost an assistant head coach when Special Teams Coordinator Rich Bisaccia left for Jon Gruden’s Oakland Raiders.

Per usual, the hire has been met with mixed reactions from Cowboys Nation.

Joey Ickes on Twitter

Since 2003, CIN has had only one season where they finished top-10 in Yards per attempt on the ground… They’ve been bottom-5 in the league 5 times in that span… That’s the OL Coach DAL just hired.

The hiring of an offensive line coach who’s rushing attack finished bottom five in the league in rushing yards per attempt five times since 2003 doesn’t look too great on paper. He will also teach with different techniques and styles than previous Cowboys OL coaches, which could potentially set back the offensive line early in the season.

Plus, respected Bengals’ writer Joe Goodberry did not exactly love the hire for the Cowboys.

Goodberry on Twitter

Pretty bad https://t.co/fysjZqCQ6l

Regardless, this is still a very talented offensive line and one which should lead an effective ground attack based on their talent alone. 2017 proved further that coaching matters a lot in the NFL however, and the wrong hire could set back even the most talented of units.

We will just have to wait and see how this 2018 season ends up playing out.

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Dallas Cowboys

Mike Solari, Paul Alexander Candidates for Cowboys Vacant OL Coaching Job

Sean Martin

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Mike Solari, Paul Alexander Candidates For Cowboys Vacant OL Coach Job 1

By keeping all three top coaches (Jason Garrett, Scott Linehan, and Rod Marinelli) in place for 2018, there isn’t a Dallas Cowboys coaching hire that feels like they “must” get it right to contend next season. This is how it should be.

Producing nine wins, despite missing key players throughout the season, the Cowboys are changing things up at the position coach level to hopefully introduce new ideas and give the talent on this team a better chance at sustained success.

One coaching vacancy that needs to be filled by the right guy above any else is on the offensive line, where things haven’t been the same since the great Bill Callahan departed.

Frank Pollack took his place, and now finds himself with the Cincinnati Bengals after not being retained by Dallas this offseason.

Mike Solari, Paul Alexander Candidates For Cowboys Vacant OL Coach Job

Tom Cable (Stephen Brashear / Getty Images)

The first name that was thrown around in consideration for the Cowboys job was Tom Cable, which sent a panic throughout Cowboys Nation before Cable decided to sign with John Gruden and the Raiders.

Cable had been coaching the Seahawks’ OL, a position that franchise has not valued in some time, and struggled to develop any talent in protection of their franchise QB Russell Wilson.

Now, two new names have emerged as candidates to coach the likes of two-time 1st Team All-Pro LT Tyron Smith, 1st Team All-Pro C Travis Frederick, and two-time 1st Team All-Pro RG Zack Martin.

Mike Solari and Paul Alexander

Paul Alexander has already met with the Dallas Cowboys, looking for work after 23 seasons with the Bengals. During this time, Alexander served as Marvin Lewis’ assistant head coach, in addition to his duties as their OL coach.

Judging on reactions out of Cincinnati to Alexander’s departure, the Bengals offensive line regressed under him in 2017, warranting change from a franchise that is as reluctant as any to move on from coaches.

Goodberry on Twitter

Paul Alexander better be gone

Most recently, Mike Solari has served as the offensive line coach for the New York Giants — far from a renowned unit around the NFL lately. He does have previous experience with the Cowboys, having served as an assistant OL and special teams coach here from 1987-88.

From 2006-07, Solari did reach the rank of offensive coordinator with the Kansas City Chiefs, which shows the level of respect that the 30-year NFL coaching veteran has earned.

He will be the Dallas Cowboys’ next interview for their open OL coach position.

Cowboys at Raiders: La'el Collins Faces Toughest Test Yet In Khalil Mack 1

Dallas Cowboys RT La’el Collins, RG Zack Martin

Depth at tackle, a long-term answer at left guard, and an extension for Zack Martin are among the questions facing the Cowboys offensive line moving forward. Whoever is in charge of keeping this unit up to standard in 2018 though, may hold the keys to getting the entirety of the Cowboys’ program back on track.

Whether it’s Alexander, Solari, or another outside candidate yet to emerge, Inside The Star will keep you updated on the Cowboys’ ongoing coaching search.

Tell us what you think about “Mike Solari, Paul Alexander Candidates for Cowboys Vacant OL Coaching Job” in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

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Cowboys Defensive Back Questions Still Need Answers

John Williams

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Byron Jones
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys defense took a step forward in 2017, and in the process they answered several questions. They found a “war daddy” in DeMarcus Lawrence, something that’s been missing since DeMarcus Ware left for the Denver Broncos. Lawrence finished tied for second with Calais Campbell in sacks with 14.5, and made the NFL All-Pro Second Team.

We got to see Jaylon Smith answer questions about his health all season long. Smith appears to be trending in the right direction, both in his health and his performance on the field.

The plan to rebuild the secondary seems to be on the right track as they’ve found a couple of aggressive corners in Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis. They have the look of a dynamic duo that will be impact players on this team for a long, long time.

Kavon Frazier has been a revelation. The thumper at the safety position is something that’s been missing for the Dallas Cowboys since Roy Williams.

However, questions still remain about a defense that carried this team at times, and looked like the Rob Ryan and Monte Kiffin defenses of yesteryear at other times.

To me the biggest questions in the secondary revolve around Byron Jones and Xavier Woods.

Cowboys en Español: Proyectando el Roster de 53 Jugadores 2

Dallas Cowboys S Byron Jones (James D. Smith via AP)

Where do Byron Jones and Xavier Woods Fit?

Byron Jones has been a popular whipping boy for Cowboys Nation. Some of that has been accurate, but he’s not as bad as social media would have you believe.

He’s been sticky in coverage, especially against tight ends, throughout his career, but in 2017 it seemed like he was shying away from tackling a bit too much. He still has that tremendous athleticism and coverage ability that warranted a first-round pick, but the question remains: What is his best position?

After playing where needed his rookie season, the Cowboys coaching staff moved him to safety for the last couple of years with mixed results.

As stated, he’s been pretty good in coverage and made some incredible plays on the ball, even if he’s lacking the interception numbers. The problem comes, in my opinion, when he’s asked to make tackles in space, which is an important aspect of being a safety.

Many have begun to wonder if Dallas would be best served moving Jones back to corner.

As a cornerback, Jones would be able to use his athleticism and coverage skills against the bigger wide receivers in the league, but not be asked to make as many tackles in the middle of the field against running backs and tight ends.

They can still bring him in against some of the better tight ends in the league. We already know the Cowboys will face Zach Ertz of the Philadelphia Eagles, Jordan Reed of the Washington Redskins, and Evan Engram of the New York Giants for a total of six games in 2018.

Dallas will also face the likes of Michael Thomas, DeAndre Hopkins, Julio Jones, Mike Evans, Alshon Jeffrey and Marvin Jones, who are bigger more athletic wide receivers who could require a man of Byron’s skill.

It will be interesting to see what they do with Byron this offseason.

Where Will Dallas Cowboys Search For "Fresh Ideas" Begin? 3

Dallas Cowboys CB Jourdan Lewis, CB Chidobe Awuzie, CB/S Xavier Woods (AP Photo/Ron Jenkins)

The same question applies to Xavier Woods, but not because he struggled. He was actually quite good as the slot corner throughout much of his rookie season.

Woods primarily played safety in his time at Louisiana Tech, and showed an ability to be the deep middle safety. Because of injuries to the cornerback group, Woods lined up as the slot corner for a lot of his snaps.

He played well there for Dallas, leaving many to wonder if he hasn’t earned the role of third cornerback. That may be a good fit, but it’s not typical to see a guy who was primarily a safety in college become a corner in the NFL.

I’d rather see him as a full-time safety.

With Woods at safety, Dallas can stay in their base defense when teams go to three wide receiver formations, especially on early downs or in situations where a run is just as likely. He can drop down from the safety spot to play in the slot, if — and it’s a big if — you trust your single-high safety.

Woods’ ability to cover in the slot allows you to stay competitive against the run, which was a struggle for Dallas.

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

We’ve seen how the yo-yo game between positions can affect a player’s technique and mentality. Chaz Green wasn’t the same player in 2017 when asked to prepare as both a guard and a tackle, as opposed to 2016 when he strictly played tackle.

In my opinion, it would be to the Dallas Cowboys interest to move Byron Jones back to cornerback full-time, and move Woods to safety.

When you decide to go to your nickel package, Chidobe Awuzie and Jones play the outside with Jourdan Lewis moving to the middle. Or you bring Jones in to cover the tight end, leave Lewis and Awuzie on the outside, and drop Woods into the slot and play cover 1.

What do you think?

Where do Byron Jones and Xavier Woods fit best on this team?

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