NFC Notes: Jaylon Smith, Cowboys, Eagles, Giants


  • Regarding the Cowboys’ sudden release of LB Jaylon Smith on Tuesday, Calvin Watkins reports that several players were caught off guard by the move: “They are all shocked.”
  • Watkins cites another source who indicates that Smith’s release was “strictly football decision based” and had “nothing negative” regarding off-the-field concerns. 
  • NFL Media’s Jane Slater confirms the Cowboys unsuccessfully attempted to trade Smith and the organization felt comfortable going forward with LBs Keanu Neal and Leighton Vander Eschwhile fourth-round LB Jabril Cox‘s increased usage could’ve also been a factor.  
  • Cowboys HC Mike McCarthy said there were “multiple factors” and felt it was the best time to move on: “We just felt like this was the best time to make this decision. I’m not gonna get into all the specifics. This was a big picture roster move.” (Jon Machota)
  • McCarthy said he had to visit some specific players to talk about Smith’s release: “He is a popular player. I had a chance to visit with some players personally about it. I know there are some group conversations about it. The specifics of it, that is really for the privacy of those rooms.” (Todd Archer)
  • When asked if they had any interest in acquiring Stephon Gilmore before his trade to Carolina, McCarthy had no comment on the matter: “I can’t comment. I’m not aware that he’s officially been released.” (Machota)
  • McCarthy said WR Michael Gallup (calf) has been ruled out of Week 5 and likely won’t return in time for Week 6 against the Patriots. (Machota)
  • Cowboys owner Jerry Jones commented on the team’s decision to draft LB Micah Parsons this year: “When (No. 12 overall pick Micah Parsons) came on the board, that was too high, I thought, for a linebacker. Not too high, though, for a pressure player that we thought was the best (defensive) player in the draft.” (Michael Gehlken)



  • Giants QB Daniel Jones said second-year OT Andrew Thomas has been great this season: “When you turn on the tape, he’s shutting down pass rushers. It’s the ultimate team game, but that’s an important position.” (Dan Salomone)
  • Jones doesn’t agree with criticism about OC Jason Garrett’s offense not being aggressive enough: “I certainly don’t agree with it. When you turn on the tape and watch other offenses I don’t think that’s a fair conclusion to draw. More than anything it’s about us executing it.” (Zack Rosenblatt)
  • Jones said first-round WR Kadarius Toney had a strong week of practice ahead of his Week 4 performance: “You can see how dangerous he can be with the ball in his hands.” (Dan Salomone)

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