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Why Dallas Cowboys Shouldn’t Expect Too Much From Randy Gregory

Brian Martin

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Cowboys Blog - Will Randy Gregory Become The New Rookie Sack Master? 1

It's been nearly a month since Randy Gregory officially submitted papers for reinstatement with the NFL and it will be at least another month until he hears any kind of response. But, that hasn't stopped Dallas Cowboys fans from speculating as to what kind of player he will be upon his return.

We all know how talented Randy Gregory was coming out of Nebraska and the only reason he slid to the Cowboys in the second-round was because of his off the field drug-related problems. He was without a doubt a top 10 talent in the 2015 NFL Draft, which is why Dallas took a chance on him to begin with. It's that talent fans are hoping he can bring to the Cowboys defense.

We all witnessed firsthand what happens to a player when they are finally able to put everything together last season when DeMarcus Lawrence took the league by storm. Like Gregory, he had his off the field problems early in his career and on top of that reoccurring back injuries kept him from playing up to his potential. But, once he was able to put all of that behind him he absolutely dominated. Fans are hoping for the same with Gregory.

I don't know where you personally stand on what you expect if/when Randy Gregory returns to the Dallas Cowboys, but I'm not expecting very much and I'll tell you why.

Randy Gregory

Dallas Cowboys DE Randy Gregory

As much as I would love to see Randy Gregory return from his suspension and absolutely dominate, I am going to pump the brakes and try to be realistic with my expectations. It would make a fantastic comeback story, but I think it's important to not to expect too much right now.

It's a little difficult to know exactly what kind of player Randy Gregory will be if the NFL decides to reinstate him. He only played in 12 games as a rookie before his off the field struggles started to earn him a suspension after suspension. The last suspension ended up costing him an entire year, which has to be the most concerning for fans, and the Dallas Cowboys, moving forward.

He has missed so much time in his development it's hard to imagine him being able to step back on the field and pick up where he left off. Training on your own is completely different from being in a NFL strength and conditioning program. I don't think he will be anywhere near being "football" ready.

I kind of doubt he has been training in pads or taking hits during his time off. Those kind of things can't be replicated very easily off on your own. That's not even mentioning his mental state. Has he gotten his life together? Will he have a relapse? Is he mentally ready to study and play once again?

These are all questions that will need to be answered if/when he is reinstated for the Cowboys. While it's a nice story to believe he can just jump right back in and become a difference making pass rusher, it's important to not expect too much right away.

The Dallas Cowboys mantra after all is "Trust the Process".

What do you think the Dallas Cowboys are expecting from DE Randy Gregory?



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.

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15 Comments
  • Tim Hargrave

    It might take him a little while to get back in shape, but i expect him to have a good 2nd half of the season and when we get to the playoffs he will be about 95% to 100% back to where he was… So please stop with all that negative BS. He will get stronger every game.

    • Brian Martin

      You’re right, he should be much better in the second half of the season. But, I’m talking about expecting too much from him right away. It’s highly doubtful he’ll be able to step right back on the field and contribute right away. I wasn’t being negative, just realistic.

  • Chuck Wright

    Guy hasn’t played a down of football in over 2 years.

    • Brian Martin

      That’s exactly why we should limit our expectations for him right away. That’s a lot of time away from the game.

  • Travis Diggs

    I wanna know how you miss two years and just come back and automatically get a roster spot without proving it on the field

    • Brian Martin

      Exactly!

    • Russ_Te

      Gregory has a lot to get done in camp if reinstated by the league. Has to show enough football skills to warrant being given time to build more game back, and Garrett has to believe in his rehab. You figure this is his last strike on the Cowboys.

      He’s certainly aware of all that, we just have to hope it’s motivating for him as a person and a Cowboy. If we get him back and he’s not flunking his drug screens, then he fits the DL well in it’s rotations. Just has to work long downs and crash the backfield from RDE. If we got that + Irving + Lawrence all year, it’s going to stop a lot of drives and determine a lot of games.

  • Zac H

    If the defensive line rotates how Marinelli has built it to, then he should be able to get some good reps in throughout the season. The fact that we aren’t dying for another defensive lineman for once will give us the upper hand in this situation. Hoping he can pull it together and help Dallas beat up Eli/Wentz/Smith!

    • Brian Martin

      I could see Gregory getting some work as a rotational pass rush specialist, but I think that’s about as much as we should expect from him if he’s reinstated.

  • Ervinlang318

    Just Curious why he waited to file a month ago when he was eligible to turn his paperwork at the end of the season.

    • Brian Martin

      Both Gregory and his team wanted to put together the best case possible for his reinstatement.

      • Ervinlang318

        Ah Gotcha

  • Charles

    My real question is considering how much time he has missed how much longer do we retain his rights?

    • Brian Martin

      I believe the Cowboys still have his rights for three more years. I don’t think his year-long suspension counted as an accured season, much like Jaylon Smith missing time his rookie season because of his knee injury.

      • Charles

        Okay thanks for the info.

Star Blog

The Dallas Cowboys WR Position Battle is Heating Up

Brian Martin

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Dallas Cowboys WR Position Battle Heating Up 1

Earning a spot on the Dallas Cowboys final 53-man roster is going to be a lot tougher in 2018 then it has been in years past. There is no shortage of position battles taking place right now to earn one of those coveted openings, but it's the battle taking place at receiver that's gaining steam and starting to heat up.

The ultimate unknown right now is how many wide receivers the Dallas Cowboys choose to carry on their 53-man roster this season. Last year they decided to carry six, but they have been known to carry just five. Unfortunately, this means they will have to release some talented players and risk losing them to another team.

As things stand right now there may just be one, possibly two, roster spots up for grabs. I think the only thing we know for sure right now is Cole Beasley, Allen Hurns, Michael Gallup, and Tavon Austin are the only WRs who can feel secure their jobs are safe for 2018. Everybody else is playing a game of Survivor, just hoping their name isn't the one written down and their torch isn't snuffed out.

Terrance Williams' flame may be safe due to his current contract. The Dallas Cowboys can't save anything by releasing him, but it doesn't cost them that much either. It's unlikely he has a future with the team, so if someone were to prove themselves more worthy, his flame could be extinguished.

Terrance Williams

Dallas Cowboys WR Terrance Williams

Last season I thought Noah Brown was ready to unseat Williams, but that never really materialized. Unfortunately, Brown hasn't really shown up as much as I thought he would this offseason, and missing the game against the San Francisco 49ers last week didn't do him any favors either. This doesn't bode well for him moving forward.

Deonte Thompson was signed as a free agent to provide some veteran experience and speed to the passing game, but that in no way means his job is secure. He needs to do something to show up a little more because his age and salary means a younger up-and-coming WR could make him expendable.

Second-year WR Lance Lenoir Jr. might just be the receiver who has stirred things up the most. He has not only created a buzz for himself in offseason practices, but he was able to carry it over into the preseason last week against the 49ers. His arrow trajectory is definitely pointing upwards.

I'd definitely hate to be the one to decide who stays and who goes when final cuts are made. It's not going to be an easy decision to make, because the outcome will definitely have an impact on the team's success this year.

All of these players were brought into help Quarterback Dak Prescott and the passing game reach new heights, so making the wrong move could be detrimental. The number of wide receivers and who the Dallas Cowboys decide to keep might be the most important decision they make before the season starts.

How would you predict the Dallas Cowboys WR position battle turning out?



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Star Blog

Any Concern About Dan Bailey Not Playing Against 49ers?

Brian Martin

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Decision not to Play Dan Bailey against the 49ers a Concern? 1

With all the excitement of the Dallas Cowboys finally playing in a game last week against the San Francisco 49ers, it may have escaped your attention that Dan Bailey remained on the sideline the entire time. He didn't attempt one field goal or kick off once last Thursday, which in my opinion is a little concerning.

Dan Bailey joined Ezekiel Elliott and Sean Lee on the sideline as a healthy scratch last week. The decision to sit both Zeke and Sean Lee makes sense due to the physical demands of their positions, but sitting Bailey was a bit of a head scratcher. After all, it's not like he plays a physically demanding position like the other two.

I know. I know. Dan Bailey is an integral part for the Cowboys success moving forward. I'm not arguing that he's not, but after sitting out the majority of the 2017 season with a groin injury and lingering concerns about his health this year, not playing him at all against the 49ers is a bit confusing.

I don't believe there is any kind of kicking competition between Dan Bailey and Brett Maher, who handled all of the kicking duties against the 49ers last Thursday. Bailey will be the Cowboys kicker when the 2018 season gets underway in just a few short weeks. But, the question remains… Why didn't he receive any playing time?

Dan Bailey

Dallas Cowboys K Dan Bailey

Dan Bailey was never quite the same last season once he returned from his injury. Something was off and I don't know if it was more mental or physical, maybe a little of both. He just wasn't splitting the uprights like his normal self.

Unfortunately, we have seen this kind of thing happen in the past with one of the Cowboys kickers. Nick Folk went through a similar situation with an injury and never really bounced back. I'm just hoping history doesn't repeat itself.

Obviously, the Dallas Cowboys know more about what's going on with Dan Bailey than I do. But, you would think they'd have allowed him to attempt a field goal or at least an extra point in a game situation to build up his confidence once again. It's what I would have done.

Hopefully I'm just being a little paranoid and I'm reading more into this than there actually is. But, the fact I haven't heard any reasoning as to why Dan Bailey was held out last week is sitting a little uneasy with me. I'm just hoping it was precautionary in order to keep him as healthy as possible for the upcoming season.

Should we be concerned Dan Bailey was a healthy scratch last week?



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Star Blog

Week 1 NFC East Predictions and Cowboys Season Outlook

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Week 1 NFC East Predictions and Cowboys Season Outlook

Let me start this article with a strong opening statement: The Cowboys will be better in 2018 than they were in 2017. There's been a lot of talk about the lack of a true No. 1 receiver. But when we break it down, the current setup will most likely play out better for Cowboys QB Dak Prescott.

The Dak Stats

Certain quarterbacks shine when they have that go-to playmaker. We're talking about guys like Randy Moss, Terrell Owens, Calvin Johnson, Ocho Cinco, Tim Brown, Jerry Rice, and Dez Bryant. But other QBs do better at reading the defense and quickly adapting to what is given. Dak Prescott is the latter breed of QB.

Let’s do a quick numbers exercise to prove this.

When Prescott is targeting 8 or more receivers throughout the game, his passer rating jumps from 86.1 (targeting less than 8) to 104.5. He passes for almost 50 yards more per game and his touchdown to interception ratio drastically improves from 21-13 to 24-4.

Most importantly, when he targets at least 8 different receivers, the Cowboys are 14-2. When he targets less than 8, the team is just .500 at 8-8.

Without a doubt, Prescott is much better at adjusting to what the defense is giving him. He just isn’t one of those guys who can successfully "force" the ball (like Aaron Rodgers or Drew Brees). Not feeling the pressure of having to get the ball into the hands of the star playmaker will give this offense a new kind of depth in 2018.

Yes, losing Jason Witten hurts, much more so in my opinion than not having Dez.

Questions Still Loom

This is still the Cowboys' biggest concern on offense. There is some great depth. We have Rico Gathers, Blake Jarwin, Geoff Swaim, and the young stud out of Stanford, Dalton Schultz. But between the three who have any NFL experience, there are only 9 catches between them. I must say that Dalton, with his 4.75 40-yard dash, has a legitimate shot at seeing a lot of playing time in his rookie campaign and could become an impact player with his size (6’5”, 244-lbs) and speed.

But despite the battle for TE being wide open, and debates about whether or not the team needs a No. 1 receiver, the Cowboys are still expected to give the Eagles a run for their money in the NFC East. Here are the odds on the defending NFC East champions and how (although early) it is expected to shake out:

  1. Philadelphia Eagles -167
  2. Dallas Cowboys +350
  3. New York Giants +650
  4. Washington Redskins +750

NFC East Week 1 Predictions

The Cowboys open the season in a difficult road game against the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers have been listed as 2.5-point favorites (follow the Cowboys NFL Odds here all season long) which isn’t surprising considering they are a tough team playing at home. You might be thinking, "crap, we're opening up as underdogs?" Don’t worry too much; it actually bodes fairly well because the lines-makers generally give a 3-point advantage to the home team. This means that they actually handicap the Cowboys to be a half-point favorite on a neutral field and a 3.5-point favorite in Arlington.

The Redskins open their season in Arizona against the Cardinals. The line is set at a pick ‘em (meaning there is no point spread; it's anyone's game). But, looking at the 'Skins and Cardinals, I think Washington gets disappointed in Week 1 and starts their season with a loss.

The Giants get to test their new offensive line and see if they were right in continuing to place their faith in Eli Manning against the best defense in the league. The Jags are 3-point favorites at MetLife stadium. This means the Jags are actually 6-points better. I do think that the Giants will be vastly improved this season, but they are also going to open with a loss.

The Eagles don’t have it easy either, but they will probably pull out the win at home as 4-point favorites against the Dirty Birds on Thursday Night Football. Their defense is just too good. Atlanta's road offense scored just 21 points per game last year while Philly scores 28 on average at home. The Eagles' home defense has been downright nasty, only allowing 12 points per game in Philadelphia.

This will be a two-horse race for the division between the Eagles and Cowboys. And even if the Eagles win the East, the Cowboys will wildcard into the playoffs.



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