Signed by Cowboys Cowboys sign LB Joe Thomas

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dallasdave

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I always wondered what the WAR Room really looked like.
 

Sydla

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The Jaylon to SAM announcement was when they could negotiate with Hitchens before free agency. They were sending a message that Hitchens would be the starter at MLB if he re-signed.

Teams don't announce subtle moves like Jaylon from MLB to SLB in March unless there is a reason for it. Garrett especially does not give out info randomly.

This idea keeps getting floated but there is one problem. They also said Smith would likely be the nickel backer. So the message they sent to Hitchens was, hey you can be the MLB but you probably will only be a two down LB.

I am guessing that’s not the ideal think Hitchens would want to hear.
 

John813

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This idea keeps getting floated but there is one problem. They also said Smith would likely be the nickel backer. So the message they sent to Hitchens was, hey you can be the MLB but you probably will only be a two down LB.

I am guessing that’s not the ideal think Hitchens would want to hear.

Nor were we going to be paying him more than Lee, IMO.
 

LACowboysFan1

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They are talking about maybe moving Smith to SAM. Whose our MLB then? Wilson unless we draft a starting MLB?

Hasn't moved yet, you can make "what if" statements all day long, what if Dak tears up a knee slipping in the shower? What if Demarcus Lawrence becomes a monk and quits football? What if Jerry gets mad at the league and says the team will sit out the season? Won't need players then.

It's not even draft time, let's at least wait and see what the Cowboys do then before raising a hundred alternate questions...
 

LACowboysFan1

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This idea keeps getting floated but there is one problem. They also said Smith would likely be the nickel backer. So the message they sent to Hitchens was, hey you can be the MLB but you probably will only be a two down LB.

I am guessing that’s not the ideal think Hitchens would want to hear.

Can't put a lot of stock in what teams say this time of year, may just be a lot of thinking out loud to confuse people...
 

Sydla

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Hasn't moved yet, you can make "what if" statements all day long, what if Dak tears up a knee slipping in the shower? What if Demarcus Lawrence becomes a monk and quits football? What if Jerry gets mad at the league and says the team will sit out the season? Won't need players then.

It's not even draft time, let's at least wait and see what the Cowboys do then before raising a hundred alternate questions...

I didn’t just pull it out of my butt.

Garrett floated it.

Frankly I think it’s smart. Smith isn’t a MIKE.

And the overriding point here is that this is what people do when free agency and then the draft go a certain way............ they overinflate the abilities of guys on the roster needed to make contributions. So here, suddenly Damien Wilson has morphed into a competent starting LB. Or Brian Price is actually more than just a backup 1 Tech (which by the way, I have no issue with........... I think he's a solid backup DT).
 
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Bullflop

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With pass coverage as his forte, Thomas would be a good LB option to insert on passing downs. :)
 
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LACowboysFan1

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Frankly I think it’s smart. Smith isn’t a MIKE.

You may be right, but:

Per his NFL draft profile:

"Smith is the rare commodity who is truly hybrid in the sense that he has the athleticism, speed and physical makeup to play any linebacker spot in either the 3-4 or the 4-3. But he was somewhat miscast at middle linebacker at Notre Dame"

He is a bit small for MIKE in the NFL, but once he gets his knee straight (assuming he can), I think he'll put on a few pounds and be okay, weight-wise.

The 4-3 defense was created by Landry to keep the big guys off of the MLB so he's free to make plays, Smith (again if he recovers) has the speed and movement ability that you need in a MIKE. Lee was great at MIKE, and he isn't the biggest guy either, was listed at 236 lbs in his NFL profile.

And the draft profiles are wrong often, as a matter of fact Lee's said "Does not have the smoothest hips and struggles to maintain speed in transitions. Lacks burst to stick in man coverage and limited top-end speed prevents him from being a sideline-to-sideline player."

But he's great sideline to sideline, so I think Smith can be good at MIKE, but it all depends on his physical recovery.

We'll see...
 

Sydla

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You may be right, but:

Per his NFL draft profile:

"Smith is the rare commodity who is truly hybrid in the sense that he has the athleticism, speed and physical makeup to play any linebacker spot in either the 3-4 or the 4-3. But he was somewhat miscast at middle linebacker at Notre Dame"

He is a bit small for MIKE in the NFL, but once he gets his knee straight (assuming he can), I think he'll put on a few pounds and be okay, weight-wise.

The 4-3 defense was created by Landry to keep the big guys off of the MLB so he's free to make plays, Smith (again if he recovers) has the speed and movement ability that you need in a MIKE. Lee was great at MIKE, and he isn't the biggest guy either, was listed at 236 lbs in his NFL profile.

And the draft profiles are wrong often, as a matter of fact Lee's said "Does not have the smoothest hips and struggles to maintain speed in transitions. Lacks burst to stick in man coverage and limited top-end speed prevents him from being a sideline-to-sideline player."

But he's great sideline to sideline, so I think Smith can be good at MIKE, but it all depends on his physical recovery.

We'll see...

He doesn't shed blockers well enough to be a stud MIKE IMO. He often can get caught up in the chum in the middle of the field. He's very similar to Myles Jack and Jack had the same problems in Jax and why he's now their SAM and nickel backer. That's how Dallas should use Smith IMO.

Honestly, I'd consider putting Lee back at MIKE and putting Smith at WILL but that's never going to happen.

And note, this isn't me being down on the kid. I never believed MIKE was his best spot even prior to the draft.
 

LACowboysFan1

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I never believed MIKE was his best spot even prior to the draft.

Again, you may be right, but defenses today are more sophisticated, MIKE these days isn't the old MIKEs, where they stayed in the middle and took on linemen heads up. If he isn't able to be a good MIKE, think we'll know this year because I don't think they'll move him from there, unless they draft a MIKE.

But it's interesting to note that Walter Football's list of inside linebackers doesn't have a single guy at or over 240 lbs in their top 10 list. Maybe because most players put on some weight, if needed, once they get in the league. But if "beef" is what a MIKE needs, you have to go down to an FCS guy, who only has supposed 4.8 speed, to get a bigger guy.

Speed is the thing in the NFL, if you can have size and speed, great, but speed takes precedence over size in most spots...
 

gimmesix

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Can't put a lot of stock in what teams say this time of year, may just be a lot of thinking out loud to confuse people...

And it could be more of an ideal thing. We'd like to move Jaylon to SLB if we get someone who can replace him at MLB. If not, our starting linebackers will be WLB Lee, MLB Smith, SLB Wilson because that's the best lineup for what we've got.
 

Sydla

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And it could be more of an ideal thing. We'd like to move Jaylon to SLB if we get someone who can replace him at MLB. If not, our starting linebackers will be WLB Lee, MLB Smith, SLB Wilson because that's the best lineup for what we've got.

But that just highlights how flawed the logic is. Instead of building the best LB corps they can, we'll just move the pieces around based on who we can add. It's bizarre planning.
 

gimmesix

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But that just highlights how flawed the logic is. Instead of building the best LB corps they can, we'll just move the pieces around based on who we can add. It's bizarre planning.

To an extent. Obviously, the ideal would be to move Smith to SLB if that's his best position and get an MLB. However, if you are not going to do that, then you've got to get your best players on the field. Smith might not be a better MLB than SLB, but Lee, Smith and Wilson is probably a better lineup than Lee, Thomas and Smith, which are the two choices at this time.
 

LACowboysFan1

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But that just highlights how flawed the logic is. Instead of building the best LB corps they can, we'll just move the pieces around based on who we can add. It's bizarre planning.

Unfortunately, it's near impossible to build top linebackers, top defensive linemen, top secondary, top offensive line, top quarterback, top running back, top receivers, top tight ends, top kickers and top punters all on one team. No team has that, they all have some areas that are not as strong as others.

Just remains to be seen what area Dallas will compromise on, and it may be the linebackers...
 

Sydla

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Unfortunately, it's near impossible to build top linebackers, top defensive linemen, top secondary, top offensive line, top quarterback, top running back, top receivers, top tight ends, top kickers and top punters all on one team. No team has that, they all have some areas that are not as strong as others.

Just remains to be seen what area Dallas will compromise on, and it may be the linebackers...

Who said anything about building a top everything? I am not sure why you guys have to go to extremes in these debates.

They could have added a mid-level MIKE that won't cost an arm and a leg and have a better LB corps than say Wilson now starting somewhere.
 

LACowboysFan1

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Who said anything about building a top everything? I am not sure why you guys have to go to extremes in these debates.

They could have added a mid-level MIKE that won't cost an arm and a leg and have a better LB corps than say Wilson now starting somewhere.

Just noting that they could add a mid-level linebacker, but if they feel what they have is serviceable, then they may prefer to build a "better" o-line, secondary or other areas of the team.

Wasn't going to extremes, just covering all areas of the team, if I had said "near impossible to build a top linebacker core and a top secondary core" somebody would crop up with "why didn't you mention the receivers? Our receivers suck" etc. etc. :laugh:
 
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