Cowboys News: RB reset underway, 17 new rules up for vote, revenge game coming
Big changes in the ‘Boys backfield, that’s for sure. While Tony Pollard has made it official with his franchise tag, Ezekiel Elliott is imagining himself wearing new colors next season (although in a familiar jersey number, he hopes). But we’ll also look at what Ronald Jones brings to the table in 2023, and how all three rushers figure into how the Dallas front office is trying to do a financial reset at the position, starting now.
Meanwhile, Dak Prescott could have a future as a tattoo artist if the QB thing doesn’t work out; we’ll have that surprising story. We’re looking at what holes are left on the Cowboys roster, what new rules are up for a vote (and which hot-button topic didn’t make the cut), we’re not giving up on a DeAndre Hopkins shocker (even though we probably should), and we’re looking ahead at one of the league’s biggest revenge games of 2023, right there on the Cowboys schedule. All that, plus wide receiver Adam Thielen says he picked the Carolina Panthers over the Dallas Cowboys… but just wait until you hear the reason why. That’s all up in News and Notes.
Cowboys RB Tony Pollard officially signs franchise tag for 2023 :: Cowboys Wire
The 25-year-old’s signature guarantees he’ll play 2023 under the $10.09 million tag, unless he and the Cowboys come to terms on a longer-duration deal before July 17. “He’s an integral part of looking forward,” Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said of Pollard at this year’s scouting combine.
Ronald Jones on homecoming: 'It means everything' :: The Mothership
At just 25, Jones brings a rare mix of youth and championship experience to the Cowboys backfield. He has, after all, won two Super Bowls. “I think they’re right there at the hump and, hopefully, I can be a part that helps them get over that hump.” the McKinney native said on his return to the Metroplex. “I’m just looking to help bring this city a ring.” He believes he’ll be an effective change of pace to Pollard.
Why NFL draft is key to Cowboys’ financial reset at running back :: Dallas Morning News
No NFL team devoted more of its salary cap to running backs in 2022 than the Cowboys. The outlook is not much brighter in the short term, with Pollard’s tag and Elliott’s leftover cap hit. Low-cost moves like one-year deals for Jones and Rico Dowdle, plus a likely draft pick at the position next month, will help bring those numbers back to manageable levels by 2025.
Eagles among 3 teams Ezekiel Elliott is considering for 2023 :: Cowboys Wire
A report came out Thursday stating that the new free agent had “narrowed down his options” for a new team to three: Philadelphia, Cincinnati, and the New York Jets. (It was later revealed that those teams are more like Elliott’s “wish list” destinations.) The two-time rushing champ also put out on social media that he’d like to wear his old college jersey number, No. 15, once again.
NFL free agency: Additions, subtractions, what's left for each team :: ESPN
It’s been a smashing success of a free agency period for the Cowboys thus far, but Todd Archer believes the team is still thin at linebacker, considering Luke Gifford bolted and Anthony Barr won’t be back. Dallas loves Damone Clark, but still has questions about Jabril Cox and Devin Harper. And with Micah Parsons playing pass rusher more than linebacker now, don’t be surprised if another true ‘backer add is being discussed.
Would Cowboys trade Gallup for Hopkins? Here's why it's unlikely :: Cowboys Wire
With DeAndre Hopkins still being shopped, it’s tantalizing to imagine him somehow joining CeeDee Lamb, Brandin Cooks, and Michael Gallup in Dallas. Some have even suggested sending Gallup to Arizona in a swap. But the money doesn’t work: trading Gallup would accelerate all future bonuses to the current league year; adding in Hopkins’s salary would almost certainly put the Cowboys over the cap once again.
Adam Thielen’s reason for choosing Panthers over Cowboys is delusional :: The Landry Hat
The wide receiver confirmed that Dallas reached out after his release by Minnesota. But he chose to go to Carolina because felt they were a team that “seriously had a chance at winning a Super Bowl.” He’ll join fellow newcomers Miles Sanders, Hayden Hurst, and a starting quarterback to be named- and likely drafted- later. The Cowboys got the better receiver in Cooks anyway.
Cowboys aligning financial dominos perfectly for the future :: Cowboys Wire
The Gilmore and Cooks trades brought high-end players to town on the short-term cheap, but they also ensure that Trevon Diggs and Lamb will be able to be paid when the time comes. A smart restructure of DeMarcus Lawrence means Parsons will still be affordable when he needs a new deal. It’s all a moving shell game that the Cowboys front office is playing perfectly right now.
Tattoo artist breaks down work done for Cowboys’ Dak Prescott, CeeDee Lamb :: The Athletic
Prescott hired Andres Ortega to do his new leg tattoo after he saw what the Arizona artist did on his wide receiver’s back. Prescott says a big back piece is next for him, too. But the quarterback also took the gun for the first time and added his own name to Ortega’s wrist. “He did it like a professional,” Ortega said. “I was like, ‘What the [expletive], he knows how to do it?’ He did it so perfect. Dak looked like a complete tattoo artist. It’s crazy.”
NFL's best revenge games in 2023 season: Super Bowl LVII rematch, Frank Reich vs. Colts and more :: NFL.com
Among the grudge matches that will play out next season, the Cowboys’ return to Levi’s Stadium to face the 49ers will make for must-see TV. Given how the last two meetings- both in the playoffs- have only gotten weirder by the year, there’s no telling what the final play of 2023’s regular-season installment will look like.
17 rule proposals to be heard at Annual League Meeting :: NFL.com
Among the proposed new rules are one to allow the use of zero as a jersey number, one letting a team keep the ball after a score by converting a 4th-and-20, one to allow coaches to challenge personal foul calls, and one to place the ball at the 25 after a touchback on a punt. Those and 13 others will be voted on. But the much-debated “tush-push” rugby scrum didn’t make the list; the tactic will remain legal in 2023.