NFC Notes: Cowboys, Eagles, Giants, Washington

     

Cowboys

  • NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport reported that while the Cowboys made some inquiries, Dallas is not expected to be among the suitors for former Ravens S Earl Thomas.
  • However, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones pushed back on that report in a radio interview Tuesday: “He doesn’t know what he’s talking about. The only one who knows that is me.” (Jon Machota)
  • Jones suggested the team hasn’t necessarily ruled out signing Thomas, who has wanted to come to the Cowboys for years: “I haven’t visited personally with Earl and don’t know that anybody has but that would probably be a next step.” (Ed Werder)
  • Jones notes the team is weighing what it has currently at safety, which also includes cross-training a few cornerbacks at the position. (Michael Gehlken)
  • Cowboys CB Daryl Worley and fourth-round CB Reggie Robinson have been working at safety as well. (Gehlken)
  • Cowboys CB Chidobe Awuzie picked up a right leg injury but it’s not expected to sideline him long per HC Mike McCarthy: “It’s nothing of serious nature.” (Machota)
  • Cowboys S Darian Thompson, who has outplayed free-agent addition S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix for the starting job in camp, also drew some praise from McCarthy: “I’ll say this: He definitely has lived up to his reputation. His work ethic, his workload capacity is outstanding. …He’s having a great camp.” (Gehlken)
  • Cowboys S Xavier Woods said new DC Mike Nolan‘s defense includes a lot more subterfuge: “Just more coverages. More schemes. …I know the big thing is there’s going to be more disguising.” (Gehlken)
  • Cowboys DT Antwaun Woods said he waited to sign his exclusive rights free agent tender until just before training camp as he and his agent explored their options: “Personally, I believe I’m worth more. …I absolutely think I’m overlooked a lot.” (Gehlken)
  • Cowboys G Connor Williams is expected to start at left guard once he’s cleared from the torn ACL he suffered last year: “First ACL and it’s a huge injury so I didn’t really know what to expect at first, but slowly day by day, head down, grinded. I’ve been here all offseason doing rehab and recoveries and Britt Brown’s done a great job with me trying to get me back on the field. I honestly feel really great right now and I feel better than where I left off last year.” (Todd Archer)

Eagles

Eagles TEs Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert have formed the best 1-2 punch at the position since Philadelphia drafted Goedert in the second round in 2018. Now, though, the Eagles are approaching the financial realities of that situation. Both have two years remaining on their contracts and both are due for big raises. Ertz is first given the recent bump the market gave top-tier TEs George Kittle and Travis Kelce and Goedert is rooting for him to get the best deal possible while worrying later what it means for his future with the team.

“Zach deserves a contract here, he’s been here, been a top-three tight end in the league. Personally, I believe he’s been the best in the league for the last bunch of years, so he definitely deserves whatever he’s about to get, and I’ve just got to let this year play out,” Goedert said via Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Inquirer. “It’s not even time to worry about the future. The last two years, me and Zach have been here, we’ve both played good football, we’ve been in the playoffs. I think we can do whatever we want when that time comes, but for him, excited to see what he can do.”

  • NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport confirms the Eagles have re-engaged in contract talks with Ertz. 

Giants

The new coaching staff of the Giants is hoping that they can be the ones to help DL Leonard Williams continue to improve in his career and help him become a big impact playmaker on the defensive side of the ball.

“I think he’s starting to put it all together,” said Giants DC Sean Spencer, via Ralph Vacchiano. “He’s always had the tools. He’s working on refining his craft right now. He looks strong and powerful. I’m just happy with his progress right now. Obviously he’s a tremendous athlete. We’ve got to take him just from being this tremendous athlete to refining him as a football player. He wants to have success. No one goes out on the field saying ‘I was this high draft pick, I haven’t reached my potential.’ He wants to be great.”

Williams himself says that he doesn’t feel that he needs to prove anything, and knows that he still has plenty to prove as he continues to play with a chip on his shoulder.

“I wouldn’t say I have something to prove necessarily,” Williams said. “I think the coaches know and my teammates know what I bring to the table or I wouldn’t be here. I definitely still feel like I’m playing with a chip on my shoulder at the same time, though. I’m definitely still a young player in this league. I feel like I still have a lot in the tank. I still feel like I have a lot of years left in me to play in this league. I’m looking at it as an opportunity. I’m not looking at it as something that’s bad. I’m looking at it as an opportunity.”

  • The Giants were never in the mix for CB Dre Kirkpatrick and were surprisingly comfortable with their current group of cornerbacks, despite HC Joe Judge and Kirkpatrick having ties from their time at Alabama. (Ryan Dunleavy)
  • Giants hosted DB Brandon Williams for a visit. (Albert Breer)
  • Giants tried out DB KeiVarae Russell

Washington

  • Washington QB Dwayne Haskins is clearly ahead of the competition in Alex Smith, who hasn’t shown he is ready to make a challenge, and Kyle Allen who has worked exclusively with the second group. (John Keim)
  • Rookie RB Antonio Gibson has worked exclusively with the running backs but will sit in some receivers meetings as it pertains to his routes. (Keim)
  • Washington first-round DE Chase Young has been dealing with a hip flexor issue but says he’s almost back to full health: “It’s right there. Just still — you want to make sure that it’s 110 percent and something that I don’t have to think about when I’m out on the field.” (Nicki Jhabvala)
  • Washington HC Ron Rivera said the team decided to move on from WR Cody Latimer because it didn’t look like there was going to be a resolution to his legal situation any time soon. (Jhabvala)
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