The NFL trade deadline passed Tuesday without the Dallas Cowboys making a move. That shouldn’t come as a huge surprise considering that team owner and general manager Jerry Jones has been saying for the last week that a deal was unlikely.
While the Cowboys stood pat, their top competition in the NFC playoff picture each made at least one move in the last eight days. The Philadelphia Eagles traded for Pro Bowl safety Kevin Byard, the Seattle Seahawks traded for starting DL Leonard Williams, the Detroit Lions traded for WR Donovan Peoples-Jones and the San Francisco 49ers traded for DE Chase Young, the second overall pick in the 2020 draft.
Jerry Jones said last week that if they didn’t do anything at the trade deadline, he still felt like the Cowboys have a team “that can get us where we want to go.”
“I’m, by nature, active and, by nature, a risk-taker,” he later added, “so don’t come by unless you want to get struck at. We will trade. There’s no mistake about it. We will make a deal. But it’s certainly got a high bar because I like our team.”
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In a little over a year, Dallas has made five trades to acquire veteran players. Those five are the only players on the current roster that have been acquired via trade. They are DT Johnathan Hankins, CB Stephon Gilmore, WR Brandin Cooks, QB Trey Lance and CB Noah Igbinoghene.
Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said last Friday on 105.3 The Fan that anybody who knows the Cowboys, “knows we’re always open for business. We’ve been in here 30 years. It’s just having something that makes sense.”
What makes getting a deal done so difficult?
“For a player to come in and help this team right now, it’s more than likely, unfortunately, it’s gonna probably be somebody who is an established guy and he’s usually well paid and they probably want a lot for him,” Stephen Jones said. “That makes it a challenge. It’s probably why you don’t see as many trades as you might think. You hear a lot of names in the rumor mill, but when it comes right down to making one, it gets hard.
“We were down to the wire with one last year in Brandin Cooks. Between the compensation for the team and the compensation for the player, it just became very difficult to make it work. Now, we ultimately made a deal (in March) and got Brandin here in Dallas. But it didn’t work out at the trade deadline because of some of the variables that go into that that I just mentioned.”
Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy was asked at the end of his Monday news conference if Dallas needed to add anything before the trade deadline.
“I’m the wrong person to ask that because I’m about the development of the men in the building,” McCarthy said. “I just strongly believe in that. I’m not blind to what goes on, but I’m not sitting here with my fingers crossed hoping that we trade for somebody. That’s not my personal feeling. Not at all. I believe in the men we have in the locker room.”
(Photo of Jerry Jones: Richard Rodriguez / Getty Images)
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