NFC Notes: Cowboys, Eagles, Washington


Cowboys DC Dan Quinn believes LB Leighton Vander Esch has stood out in practice.

“I’ve been really impressed, not just from the OTA time,” Quinn said, via “Every once and a while you can just see a person that’s on a mission, and I think that’s what I’ve seen from Leighton from the time I arrived. You could just feel the energy and intensity that he’s putting into his workouts to change his body, to get as strong as he could. From then on, the questions, in the meetings, you could feel the urgency to go.

“I guess, just a quick story for him: the tackling. ‘Hey, I want to improve on this spot.’ The work that we did and the techniques to do it. It’s been so impressive to see him find little things to work on over and over again to complete his game. He’s been very impressive to me so far.”


Former University of Buffalo QB Tyree Jackson is transitioning to tight end. Eagles TE coach Jason Michael, a former collegiate QB, believes that Jackson’s background will help him with the transition.

With the quarterback history, and the past that he’s got, he’s got a good football understanding and understands general football,” Michael said, via Mike Kaye of

Jackson had a stint with DC Defenders of the XFL as a QB. From there, the Eagles signed Jackson in January to a futures contract with one caveat, that he makes the switch to TE.

It’s all new to him,” Michael said. “You go back to the simple things like being in a stance, the releases and things. It’s new to him every day and he’s taken those strides, and obviously, he has a good mental aspect from football and that helps him be able to take them into the physical (aspect). He’s done a good job of that so far.”


  • NBC Sports’ JP Finlay says that although Washington QB Taylor Heinicke flashed during OTAs, it would be surprising if he were to beat out Ryan Fitzpatrick for the starting job. 
  • Finlay adds that although he’s firmly the No. 3 guy at this point, Washington QB Kyle Allen is still pretty close to a roster lock. 
  • While undrafted RB Jaret Patterson has impressed, Finlay notes it could be hard to find room on the final roster for four running backs if Washington keeps Peyton Barber as the No. 3. 
  • Finlay also sees an absolute brawl of a training camp battle coming for the final one or two receiver spots between Kelvin Harmon, Antonio Gandy-Golden, Steven Sims, and seventh-round rookie Dax Milne
  • Finlay mentions there’s a good chance Washington S Landon Collins starts training camp on the PUP list as he works back from a torn Achilles. 
  • Washington worked out RB Craig Reynolds on Monday. (Aaron Wilson)

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