Thu, 30 Jun 2022

Updates: Cowboys Waive Rookie Safety

Dallas Cowboys
21 May 2022, 20:24 GMT+10

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May 20 UpdatesLa'Kendrick Van Zandt

#38 S

Height: 5-11Weight: 210 lbsCollege: TCU

3:06 p.m. - The Cowboys waived rookie safety La'Kendrick Van Zandt on Friday.

Van Zandt signed with the Cowboys as a rookie free agent earlier this month after going undrafted in April. The former TCU standout was a three-year starter in college and made All-Big 12 honorable mention in 2020.

--------------------------------------- May 19 UpdatesJoe Whitt Jr.

Defensive Passing Game Coordinator/Secondary

College: AuburnHometown: Auburn, AL

12:16 p.m. - The Cowboys have chosen two candidates for the NFL's inaugural Coach and Front Office Accelerator Program, which will take place at next week's owner's meetings.

The league asked each of its clubs to nominate two attendees for the event, which will feature networking opportunities for "diverse, prospective club-nominated head coaching and general manager prospects."

The seminar will include information sessions and programs that are designed to be educational about both coaching techniques and football business operations. The NFL's main goal, though, is to address its diversity issues by giving minority coaching and general manager candidates time to meet and network with league owners.

The Cowboys' nominees are Assistant Director of College Scouting Chris Vaugh, from the front office, and Defensive Passing Game Coordinator/Secondary Coach Joe Whitt Jr., from the coaching staff.

Whitt is in his second season overseeing the Cowboys' secondary after joining Dan Quinn's defensive staff in 2021. He coached in Atlanta with Quinn in 2020, and he was also a member of Mike McCarthy's staff in Green Bay for 11 years, coaching cornerbacks for the Packer team that won Super Bowl XLV.

Vaughn is in his sixth year with the Cowboys, joining the scouting department under executive vice president of player personnel Will McClay in 2017. Prior to entering the NFL, he had 18 years of coaching experience, with stops at noteworthy programs like Arkansas, Ole Miss, Memphis and Texas.

--------------------------------------- May 17 UpdatesEzekiel Elliott

#21 RB

Height: 6-0Weight: 228 lbsCollege: Ohio State

2:40 p.m. - The Cowboys have enjoyed basically full attendance since the voluntary offseason program began last month. Among the participants is running back Ezekiel Elliott, who's having productive workouts after playing through a knee injury for most of the 2021 season.

"I was looking at the GPS of the workouts (last) Tuesday (and) 22 miles an hour in May is pretty damn good," head coach Mike McCarthy said in reference to Elliott's workout metrics. "Yeah, he looks great."

Elliott said after the Cowboys' playoff loss to the 49ers that he'd been playing through a partially torn PCL in his right knee. The injury, which occurred in Week 4 against the Panthers, did not require offseason surgery.

--------------------------------------- May 16 UpdatesMike McCarthy

Head Coach

College: Baker UniversityHometown: Pittsburgh, PA

1:51 p.m. - Last week's schedule reveal happened to coincide with the Cowboys' draft class arriving at The Star for rookie minicamp. The two-day camp (Friday/Saturday) was obviously head coach Mike McCarthy's top priority, but he did give his initial thoughts on the Cowboys' 17-game slate.

"The thing I've always looked at is really the first four games and I like the fact that the first two (Bucs and Bengals) are at home," he said. "And then you have your first division game at home, too (Week 4 vs. Washington).

"We know that we're always going to have the national games and our travel is going to be a challenge. I have no idea where we're ranked, but I'm sure we're in the top 10 as far as the travel and the night games. The travel part of it is always a challenge, but this is Year 3, so I feel like I have a handle on that. Going back to Green Bay (Nov. 13 against the Packers), that'll be fun. I was hoping for October or September, but November will be fine."

McCarthy, of course, coached the Packers from 2006-18 and won a Super Bowl with Green Bay in 2010.

--------------------------------------- May 14 UpdatesJalen Tolbert

#18 WR

Height: 6-1Weight: 195 lbsCollege: South Alabama

4:22 p.m. - Just a two-word answer was all Kellen Moore needed to describe his newest drafted wide receiver.

"He's awesome," said Moore, the Cowboys' offensive coordinator when asked about rookie Jalen Tolbert. "I think he works his tail off. I think you can tell how prepared he is and how detailed he wants to be. I think he's going to be a really good addition for us."

Tolbert, a third-round pick from South Alabama, was nearly the Cowboys' second-round pick. So obviously, the team was ecstatic to land him in the third. And with Michael Gallup still rehabbing a torn ACL injury that could jeopardize his chances of playing Week 1, Tolbert will get the chance to show his versatility.

"We'll try to get him to learn as many spots as possible. We'll start him in a Z-type position, maybe play him in the slot," Moore said. "We'll get him moved all around the field. We like to do that with a number of our receivers. So, we'll do the same thing with him."

--------------------------------------- May 13 UpdatesChris Naggar

#19 K

Height: 6-1Weight: 194 lbsCollege: SMU

5:11 p.m. - The Cowboys released kicker Chris Naggar on Friday, which means undrafted rookie Jonathan Garibay is currently the only kicker on the roster.

Simon Mathiesen is participating in this week's rookie minicamp on a tryout basis.

Naggar was the only kicker in the group with NFL experience. He attempted and made one field goal with the Browns last year.

The Cowboys are looking for a replacement for veteran Greg Zuerlein, whom they released earlier this offseason. The kicker competition is "wide open" moving forward, head coach Mike McCarthy said.

--------------------------------------- May 12 UpdatesTyler Smith

#73 OL

Height: 6-6Weight: 332 lbsCollege: Tulsa

7:05 p.m. - It wasn't Tyler Smith's first trip to The Star, but on Thursday, the first-round pick was around his new teammates as the Cowboys prepare for a rookie minicamp.

Also, Smith is expected to officially sign his contract before the end of the weekend. Gone are the days when first-round picks sign their deals right before training camp. Smith, the No. 24 overall pick will likely sign the deal over the weekend.

The Cowboys are hopeful to get all four fifth-round picks signed and perhaps the sixth-round pick Devin Harper. The Cowboys are anticipating needing more time to sign second, third and fourth round picks, but it shouldn't linger too long into the offseason.

Last year, Pittsburgh signed RB Najee Harris - also the 24th overall pick - to a four-year deal worth over $13 million, with a fifth-round option.

--------------------------------------- Dallas Cowboys

5 p.m. - For the second consecutive year, the Cowboys will open the regular season in primetime against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- this time at AT&T Stadium on Sunday, Sept. 11, the NFL just announced. Kickoff is set for 7:20 p.m. Central on Sunday Night Football.

It's a rematch of last year's thriller in Tampa, won by the Bucs 31-29, where Brady and Dak Prescott combined for 782 passing yards and seven touchdowns.

The league has also announced that the Cowboys will face the Packers in Green Bay on Nov. 13.

The full schedule will be revealed at 7 p.m. Central during NFL Network's "Schedule Release '22" special.

Limited tickets are now available at SeatGeek.com.

--------------------------------------- Dallas Cowboys

11:32 a.m. - There are a few more names to know for this weekend's rookie minicamp.

In addition to their draft picks, priority free agents and a handful of select veterans, the Cowboys have also invited six rookie tryouts to The Star this weekend for a closer look.

Most notable among those names are two rookie quarterbacks, Nick Starkel and Terry Wilson.

Starkel is trying to break into the NFL after a six-year college career that saw him make stops at Texas A&M, Arkansas and San Jose State. His final two seasons came at San Jose State, where he totaled 3,819 passing yards and 26 touchdowns in 15 appearances. The New York Jets also invited Starkel to their rookie camp, which was held last weekend.

Similarly, Wilson's career began at Kentucky, where he showed potential as both a passer and a runner over the course of three seasons. He finished his time with the Wildcats with 3,436 passing yards to go with 1,015 rushing yards. He wrapped up his college career with one season at New Mexico, where he appeared in six games and threw for 1,058 yards.

Those two draw the headlines, but four other tryouts will be hoping to impress. The Cowboys are bringing in two specialists - another kicker, Simon Mathiesen from Northwest Missouri State, as well as TCU long snapper Antonio Ortiz.

Alex Akingbulu, an offensive tackle from Fresno State, and Duke running back Nakeie Montgomery round out the list.

--------------------------------------- May 10 UpdatesT.J. Vasher

#16 WR

Height: 6-5Weight: 210 lbsCollege: Texas Tech

10:23 a.m. - The Cowboys will be back on the field Friday morning for the start of the rookie minicamp, which will feature all nine draft picks, 20 undrafted rookies and a handful of rookies here on a tryout basis.

But also on the field will be about seven players that aren't so new to the team. Players who have been on the practice squad but haven't played in a regular-season game are eligible to practice this weekend.

Those names include guard Isaac Alarcon, safety Tyler Coyle, defensive end Austin Faoliu, center Brandon Jones, kicker Chris Naggar and wide receivers T.J. Vasher and Brandon Smith.

--------------------------------------- May 9 UpdatesDallas Cowboys

3:18 p.m. - We don't know the Cowboys' 2022 schedule just yet - the NFL will announce it Thursday night - but we do know their strength of schedule for the upcoming season.

For a quick refresher, here are the Cowboys' opponents without dates or times yet:

Home: Eagles, Giants, Washington, Bears, Lions, Bucs, Colts, Texans, BengalsAway: Eagles, Giants, Washington, Packers, Vikings, Rams, Jaguars, Titans

Based solely on their 2021 opponents' total record (133-155-1), the Cowboys are tied with Washington for the league's easiest schedule this season.

The biggest reason for that ranking: the NFC East's struggles a year ago. The Cowboys (12-5) clinched the East by a full three games last year. They went 6-0 against the Eagles, Commanders and Giants, who had a combined 20-31 record.

It's entirely possible the division will be improved, though, and it's worth noting that the Cowboys play a first-place schedule that includes games against fellow division champs Tampa Bay and the LA Rams.

But on paper, that's how it stands.

--------------------------------------- May 5 UpdatesIsaac Alarcón

#60 T

Height: 6-7Weight: 320 lbsCollege: Monterrey Tech

For the third straight year, the Cowboys will get another roster exemption for offensive lineman Isaac Alarcon.

The NFL initially announced its International Pathway Program would be for only two years, the league decided to give those players, including Alarcon a third season.

That means he won't count towards the 90-man roster this offseason. And if he doesn't make the active roster, he could return to the practice squad, also on an exemption.

Alarcon, who became one of the stars of HBO's Hard Knocks last season, played in the preseason last year at guard and will likely continue to work there, but could get some chances to play tackle as well.

--------------------------------------- April 30 UpdatesJalen Tolbert

#18 WR

Height: 6-1Weight: 195 lbsCollege: South Alabama

12:00 a.m. - Jalen Tolbert, like all draft prospects, is used to fielding a lot of phone calls.

The one he got earlier this week, days before the Cowboys made him the No. 88 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, was a bit different. Rather than an agent or a scout or a front office seeking to confirm his number, it was none other than Dak Prescott.

"For a minute it was a surreal moment because I never knew quarterbacks would call prospects," Tolbert said on Friday.

It's not common, but it does happen. And in their search for a new weapon to help replace Amari Cooper and Cedrick Wilson, the Cowboys enlisted their star quarterback's help.

"That was a Dak thing," said executive vice president of player personnel Will McClay. "The importance of him to the organization, he reached out. We said 'Hey, here's some guys for you to do your thing with."

The Cowboys declined to elaborate on how many prospects Prescott called, but this one stuck. Tolbert said he and Prescott talked for 20 minutes about football and his role with the Cowboys. As of now, it'll be the first conversation of many.

--------------------------------------- April 26 Updates

3:01 p.m. - The Cowboys are taking things gradually with Michael Gallup's recovery from an ACL injury.

Gallup underwent surgery on the torn ligament in early February, after tearing it while making a 21-yard touchdown catch against Arizona on Jan. 2.

The injury didn't prevent the Cowboys from signing their 2018 draft pick to a five-year, $57.5 million contract last month, though the timeline for his return to action is still uncertain.

Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said Gallup is making progress, but it might have to wait until the team reports for training camp until we'll hear further.

"Michael is doing very well in his rehab. He's here every day. He's been here throughout the prehab, the surgery and now the rehab," McCarthy said. "I think once we get to training camp, we'll have a tighter view on exactly when he'll be available."

--------------------------------------- April 25 UpdatesDak Prescott

#4 QB

Height: 6-2Weight: 238 lbsCollege: Mississippi State

12:07 p.m. - Technically the Cowboys' offseason program is voluntary, but it sounds like the team has had close to full attendance since phase one of workouts began last week.

"I didn't do the check myself, but I'm not surprised that everybody was there," quarterback Dak Prescott told reporters last Friday at the Children's Cancer Fund Gala in Dallas.

"You don't want to be that guy that's not building the chemistry or building what we're working for. I think that shows the character of the guys that we've got and credit to the front office and the coaches for getting people that want to be here when it's completely voluntary."

The first two weeks of the program include only meetings, strength, conditioning and physical rehab work with strength and conditioning coaches. Organized team activities (OTAs) begin May 24.

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