NFC Notes: Cowboys, Eagles, Giants


  • ESPN’s Todd Archer says drafting Micah Parsons in the first round means either Cowboys LB Jaylon Smith or Leighton Vander Esch won’t be with the team in 2022 for salary cap reasons. 
  • Dallas declined Vander Esch’s fifth-year option, meaning he’ll be an unrestricted free agent after this season, and Smith’s $9.2 million 2022 base salary is fully guaranteed the fifth day of the league year next season. Archer points out Dallas could save $5 million by cutting Smith before then. 
  • The addition of S Keanu Neal who the Cowboys plan on converting to linebacker also makes for a crowded room and potentially limited snaps with four players splitting three or even just two spots. 
  • Whatever happens in the future, Parsons is looking forward to learning from both Smith and Vander Esch while they’re around: “I think they’re going to take me under their wing and teach me how to be a pro football player and help me get better every day. And we’re going to push each other, and I think once we all come together, we’ll play at an elite level. This defense can be the best defense in the National Football League.”
  • Now that the period to sign qualifying free agents is over, Over The Cap’s Nick Korte projects the Cowboys to receive a fourth-round compensatory pick for the loss of QB Andy Dalton
  • Cowboys’ VP Stephen Jones said of second-round pick CB Kelvin Joseph: “We don’t think it’s a coach-ability issue. He had some off-the-field stuff we had to get comfortable with. We feel good that he has his off-the-field under control.” (Jon Machota)



  • Per the Athletic’s Dan Duggan, the Giants would have only considered drafting an offensive lineman in the first round if Oregon LT Penei Sewell fell to their pick. They liked Landon Dickerson and Aaron Banks in the second round, but the Eagles and 49ers respectively took them before they could pick.
  • Duggan mentions that while the Giants liked G Trey Smith, he had medical red flags that dropped him off their board and ultimately pushed him all the way down to the Chiefs in the sixth round.  
  • While he wouldn’t rule out an addition like veteran G Trai Turner, Duggan believes the Giants are content to bank on development from their young offensive line. 
  • A source confirmed to Duggan that the Giants would have taken WR DeVonta Smith at No. 11 before they were sniped by the Eagles. 
  • Though the Giants have been burned by Georgia players in the past, a source told Duggan second-round OLB Azeez Ojulari‘s personality was the “opposite” of CB Deandre Baker.

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