NFC Notes: Cowboys, Eagles, Giants, Washington


  • According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, new Cowboys DC Dan Quinn‘s lengthy history with S Keanu Neal dating back to recruiting him in college at Florida helped Dallas ward off the Jets to sign Neal. 
  • Fowler notes the team hopes playing Neal in more of a weakside linebacker role will help accentuate his strengths. Dallas is also hoping to strike gold by targeting other safeties like Malik Hooker and Damontae Kazee who are discounted coming off major injuries right now. 
  • Regarding the Cowboys’ interest in adding a safety this offseason, Calvin Wakins mentions Dallas “still values” S Donovan Wilson and they are looking for players to partner with him, rather than replacing him. 
  • Although Ed Werder notes that DE Aldon Smith seemed a “scheme fit” for new DC Dan Quinn, Dallas intends on expanding DE Randy Gregory’s role in 2021.
  • Werder also mentions that the Cowboys signing veteran DE Tarell Bashamreinforced the decision” to move on from Smith.
  • South Carolina CB Jaycee Horn had a meeting scheduled with the Cowboys following his pro day. (Watkins)


Eagles’ recently signed veteran S Anthony Harris said new DC Jonathan Gannon will bring “some energy” to Philadelphia’s defense. 

“He’s going to bring some energy,” Harris said, via Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Inquirer. “He’s going to be somebody who has that balance of being dialed in, getting to the point, letting you know what his expectations are, but he’s also going to be that guy right there with you, jumping around when you make a play.”

Harris reiterated that Gannon is a hands-on type of coach. 

I imagine he’ll be right there next to guys, maybe even demonstrating some of the drills. He’s just that type of guy, who loves football, who loves being around the players, and ultimately, who just wants to win.”

Harris is excited to play in Philadelphia after spending 2015-2020 with the Vikings but didn’t elaborate on Gannon’s plans for their defensive scheme going forward. 

“That’s the one thing that I’m excited about, that it’s something new,” Harris said. “In terms of what his defense may look like, that’s something that you may have to ask him, but regardless of what it is, I’m excited. … I expect his defense to be fundamentally sound, just knowing him. … He’s really big on effort, controlling what you can control and just flying around playing football, and just loving it.

Harris is unsure why he struggled in Minnesota’s defense last season.

“I’m not quite sure [why the down year happened]. Sometimes you work really hard to get to a situation or prepare yourself as much as possible, and things just don’t work out,” Harris said. “Last year was a tough year for everyone. … I think everybody who went through what last year brought to the table, whether it was financially, health-wise, with yourself or families, I think we all just take what we can from it.”

  • ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler writes that logical landing spots for Eagles TE Zach Ertz are starting to dry up as potential trade partners are finding other options at the position. 
  • Fowler mentions the next item on the Eagles’ free agency shopping list is to find a cornerback. 
  • According to Over The Cap, the Eagles will need to save $6,021,166 in cap space to sign their draft picks this year.
  • New Eagles QB Joe Flacco signed a one-year, $3.5 million deal that’s fully guaranteed and can increase to $7.5 million with incentives. (Adam Caplan)

Giants’s Zack Rosenblatt takes a look at some available free agents who could be good fits as targets for the Giants in the second wave of free agency. The list includes: 


  • According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, the Panthers tried to re-sign WR Curtis Samuel but were not willing to go above $10 million a year given the other receivers on the roster. He signed with Washington for about $11 million per season. 
  • According to Over The Cap, Washington will need to save $3,204,645 in cap space to sign their draft picks this year.

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