Dallas Cowboys: Pat Mcquistan

Cowboys make roster moves, still two to go

August, 31, 2012
IRVING, Texas – The Cowboys will make their final cuts today to reach the 53-man limit, but they have already notified 21 players that they have not made the cut.

According to sources, the Cowboys have informed Shaun Chapas, Adrian Hamilton, Danny Coale, Eddie Whitley, Orie Lemon, Ronald Leary, Pat McQuistan, Jeff Adams, Teddy Williams, Harland Gunn, Daniel Loper, Clifton Geathers, Rudy Carpenter, Lionel Smith, Baraka Atkins, Akwasi Owusu-Ansah, Andrew Szczerba, Ben Bass, Saalim Hakim, Tim Benford and Robert Callaway of their release.

They have two more roster moves to make by 7 p.m. after the trade for offensive lineman Ryan Cook from Miami.

The Cowboys would like to bring some -- like Hamilton, Coale and Leary -- back on the practice squad if they clear waivers.

Leary was the apple of Jerry Jones’ eye as an undrafted free agent and early in training camp, but he will not be on the 53-man roster.

The Cowboys considered drafting Leary despite a knee condition, but ended up guaranteeing him $214,000 in base salary and signing bonus to sign as an undrafted free agent. When the interior line was hit by injuries early in camp Leary took some first-team snaps but he hit a wall midway through camp.
ARLINGTON, Texas – Phil Costa will start at center tonight vs. Miami and is the only projected starter playing in the preseason finale at Cowboys Stadium.

Costa missed the first three preseason games because of a low back strain and just returned to practice Monday.

Stephen McGee will start at quarterback with Phillip Tanner and Shaun Chapas in the backfield. Kevin Ogletree and Dwayne Harris will start at wide receiver, with James Hanna at tight end. The rest of the line includes Jermey Parnell, Derrick Dockery, Daniel Loper and Pat McQuistan.

On defense, Josh Brent will be the starting nose tackle and could open the year there against the New York Giants if Jay Ratliff is unable to play because of a high ankle sprain. Tyrone Crawford and Clifton Geathers will fill out the rest of the defensive line.

The linebackers will be Victor Butler, Dan Connor, Orie Lemon and Alex Albright. The secondary will feature Akwasi Owusu-Ansah and Teddy Williams at cornerback and Mana Silva and Mario Butler at safety.

Third quarter: Cowboys 20, Rams 6

August, 25, 2012
ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Cowboys remain ahead of the St. Louis Rams, 20-6, after a scoreless third quarter.

Some thoughts:

* Good hard hit by safety Mana Silva, who smashed wide receiver Brian Quick near the Rams' sideline. Silva's hit to the chest was clean. When you talk about who makes one of the final roster spots on the 53, check out Silva. He made an open field-tackle on a third-down screen pass. He also has an interception this preseason.

* Mario Butler sacked Kellen Clemens on a cornerback blitz for a 7-yard loss.

*Quarterback Stephen McGee is trying to make sure the Cowboys don't start the season with just two quarterbacks. His first pass went for 26 yards to James Hanna on a rollout. His second pass would have been a completion had Danny Coale not fallen down. When no receiver was open, McGee scrambled downfield for a first down with an 11-yard run.

* Backup offensive linemen were responsible for some penalties. Ronald Leary was flagged for a hold and Jermey Parnell was called for a a false start. Leary most likely will make the Cowboys, possibly forcing the team to release Derrick Dockery, who is also getting second-team snaps. But Parnell can't afford these mistakes. The Cowboys don't know who the swing tackle is and Parnell has a chance to win that spot. Pat McQuistan has played all three spots along the offensive line this summer, including center.

* Jason Garrett's nephew, Harry Flaherty, checked in with 4:18 to play in the third quarter. On his second snap, he lined up in the slot and was wide open, but McGee completed a 12-yard pass to Andre Holmes.

* Interesting to see defensive linemen Marcus Spears and Sean Lissemore with some late third-quarter snaps again. The Cowboys could go deep at this position, maybe having as many as eight linemen on the active roster. Spears lost a starting spot last year to Jason Hatcher and might be fighting for a gig. But it seems he's played pretty well this summer.

* Orie Lemon did a good job of reading a run play to force a tackle for loss and also tackle a running back in the open field. He's another one of these players who needs to make an impression in the final two preseason games to make the 53.

Camp observations: Ugly day for offense

August, 21, 2012

SAN DIEGO – The final observation post of training camp from California is upon us, and the last practice was not a thing of beauty for the Cowboys offense.

ESPNDallas.com's Todd Archer weighs in on Miles Austin and Dez Bryant's injuries, the offensive line and more.

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A lot of mistakes up front and on the outside in the near two-hour session, and since I was with the offense during the workout I won’t have any defensive observations.

On to the observations:

** WR Kevin Ogletree came up with a Laurent Robinson-like touchdown in red-zone drills, getting himself free after Tony Romo scrambled to his right. Ogletree did a nice job of finding a soft spot in the Chargers defense to give Romo an angle for the throw.

** The offensive line struggled in picking up some blitzes from the Chargers. San Diego had four sacks of QB Kyle Orton and three on Romo. LT Tyron Smith gave up a sack of Romo to Kendall Reyes on fourth down after he had Reyes on the ground. Romo was forced to hold onto the ball too long. Two snaps later, Smith was beaten by Larry English for a sack.

** Orton had three touchdown passes in red-zone drills, hitting Danny Coale underneath, Raymond Radway on a back-shoulder throw and TE James Hanna at the goal line.

** Felix Jones good: He was able to break free for a nice gain on a run, using a shoulder juke to get a defender out of position. Felix Jones bad: He ran the wrong way on a screen to TE John Phillips in walkthrough, forcing the offense to repeat the play.

** RB DeMarco Murray was not in a good mood after the tiff between Cowboys TE Andrew Szczerba and Chargers LB Melvin Ingram developed. Murray and Chargers S Atari Bigby exchanged words, which may have been prompted from a run earlier in the workout. After Murray broke free from the line, Bigby came up with a more-than-expected tap to Murray, who may have lowered his helmet more than expected. Bigby didn’t let it end and attempted to bring some more power to his hit.

** Interesting to see WR Danny Coale serve as the holder for K Delbert Alvarado on field goals Tuesday. P Chris Jones had taken every snap with the kickers before Coale got involved. During the offseason, Coale did some work on the side and he said he has a little experience from his college days as a holder.

** RT Doug Free moved early on a hard count by Romo and was replaced for a snap by Pat McQuistan.

** RB Lance Dunbar took some work as a punt returner with WR Cole Beasley. With Dunbar’s speed, he might get in the kick return mix as well.

Phil Costa won't play at Oakland

August, 11, 2012
OXNARD, Calif. -- Starting center Phil Costa will miss the preseason opener at Oakland with a lower back strain.

Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said the team received a good report on Costa's MRI exam.

"Probably (not playing Monday), although we had a good MRI back on him," Jones said after Saturday's practice. "And we'll just have to see how he works through it, but it's not disk."

Jones expected Costa to return to practice Wednesday after the Cowboys return from Oakland.

David Arkin is expected to start at center against the Raiders followed by Harland Gunn and quite possibly Pat McQuistan. Guard Mackenzy Bernadeau, who is questionable for Monday's game, has played center in the preseason before. But coach Jason Garrett said he would only use Bernadeau in an emergency situation.

Stephen Jones said the team wants to sign a center this weekend for insurance.

David Arkin takes first-team center snaps

August, 10, 2012
OXNARD, Calif. – Phil Costa was unable to finish Friday’s practice because of lower back stiffness that will require an MRI, so David Arkin took over.

A week ago Arkin had never snapped a football in his life. On Friday, he was the starting center.

“I had a couple of days there where I put a few on the ground, but I feel like I’m getting more confident in it, so it’s good,” Arkin said.

Arkin did not have a poor exchange with Tony Romo, but a couple of shotgun snaps were a little high.

The Cowboys are not looking for any center help at the moment, preferring to let Arkin take the second-team work when Costa is healthy. Pat McQuistan took a few center snaps Friday with the backups, and the team said it will give guard Mackenzy Bernadeau a look in camp once he gets accustomed to practicing after missing so much time in the offseason.

“There’s always pressure,” Arkin said. “You’ve really got to get it right. It doesn’t matter if it’s first team, second team or third team.”

5 Wonders: Tyrone Crawford is a player

August, 8, 2012
OXNARD, Calif. -- The Cowboys have their second off day of training camp today, so I’m wondering where I’ll spend the day. But I did not forget about Five Wonders.

Here we go:

Cowboys LB Sean Lee joins Coop and Nate from training camp to discuss his role on the defense, being a leader for this team and more.

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** The play of rookie defensive end Tyrone Crawford has me wondering if the Cowboys haven’t stolen a player with their third-round pick. He has added 15 pounds since the draft. He has the feet of a normal 4-3 end and the power you want from a 3-4 end. When the Cowboys selected him, the move was met by the general fan with a shrug (and a, "Who?"). The football people really liked the pick. Crawford is showing up almost every day and has made plays in the base and nickel packages. One member of the organization wondered whether Crawford could not start a few games this season.

** I wonder if Jason Garrett did not tip his hand on what the Cowboys want in their No. 3 receiver when discussing Miles Austin’s ability to play inside and outside. Garrett said the Cowboys could have the best of both worlds in their No. 3 search because of Austin. Putting him in the slot, however, gives him more of an edge against sub corners. Not many teams put their outside corners in the slot in passing situations. To me, that gives Kevin Ogletree and Andre Holmes an edge over Dwayne Harris or some of the others in the mix. Ogletree and Holmes are more outside receivers with their size. It’s what the Cowboys did last year with Laurent Robinson. Harris can play outside, but his quickness opens him up to be more of a slot receiver.

** I wonder how much the Cowboys like their young interior offensive linemen. They signed Derrick Dockery and Daniel Loper and had Montrae Holland in for a workout not just to be camp bodies. They envision roles for these guys as backups. The injuries suffered by Kevin Kowalski (ankle) and Bill Nagy (ankle) might have long-term consequences for both guys. Maybe David Arkin will be better in the games than in practice, but he is also struggling. The thought was that the Cowboys were about to turn over their line group these last two years, but it’s quite possible they could carry Pat McQuistan, Dockery and/or Loper on the 53-man roster. Jermey Parnell is a Jerry Jones favorite, so he’s the swing tackle again in 2012. Ronald Leary also makes the team and has shown ability.

** I wonder just how much worry there should be over the health of nose tackle Jay Ratliff. He has yet to practice in pads in camp. He did not take any snaps in the offseason, be it in the organized team activities or minicamp. Plantar fascia can be a debilitating injury and one that flares up constantly, but this has been about three months. When will it be OK? Ratliff is an undersized nose tackle for a 3-4 and relies on leverage to make plays, which makes the condition of his feet an issue. If he doesn’t have the strength to hold up, then he just can’t fire off the ball. There’s not a person in the organization worried about it, but it shouldn’t be swept under the rug. Here’s one interesting note regarding Ratliff, too: Last year, he showed up to camp weighing 285 pounds and didn’t like the attention to the weight loss. This year? He is listed at 303 pounds. I think he dropped too much last year.

** I wonder why people believe the team’s decision to cut Brodney Pool was some sort of stern message made by Jason Garrett. It wasn’t. It was actually an easy decision. Pool might have been a starter for most of his career, but he showed little in his time with the Cowboys, and the team’s expectations for him entering camp were not that high either. After all, he received a $100,000 signing bonus. The move was made because as Rob Ryan said, “he wasn’t the same guy,” and that’s coming from a coach who calls Pool a friend. Maybe this works out best for Pool because he could have a chance to hook on with another team.

Camp observations: QBs arms get a break

August, 7, 2012
OXNARD, Calif. -- Eight practices into training camp and it’s time to be mindful of the quarterbacks’ arms.

Tony Romo threw only 16 passes in team and seven-on-seven drills, and Kyle Orton had just 12. Unofficially, Romo has completed 138 of 212 passes, and Orton 90 of 134.

With a day off Wednesday, Romo and Orton should be refreshed when they come back to work Thursday.

Now, on to the observations:

** Things got a little feisty during the session. Veteran DE Kenyon Coleman did not like something about a block from rookie TE James Hanna and shoved him in the back. Rookie TE Andrew Szczerba attempted to come to Hanna’s defense with a shove back. Later, Szczerba got into a mini-scrum with DE Tyrone Crawford. Sean Lee gave C Phil Costa a shove. NT Josh Brent expressed extreme displeasure with LB Caleb McSurdy for not making the calls loud enough.

** The goal-line drills were followed by a lot of situational work, including the old lateral play by the offense. The best part of that play came when Dez Bryant flung a lateral across the field to Romo, who threw it back to the right to WR Dwayne Harris over two defenders. Harris was quickly smothered to end the circus play.

** Costa was busy at center with the struggles of David Arkin and Harland Gunn. Arkin had four poor exchanges before he was replaced. Gunn had one shotgun snap that was low. That led Costa to take more reps. He was not immune from mistakes either. He snapped one early to Romo, causing the quarterback to flip the ball away in disgust.

** Crawford has a chance to be a player. In one on one pass rush drills he bulled through LT Tyron Smith. For a rookie, Crawford has some strength to him.

** NT Robert Callaway committed the cardinal sin for interior linemen by jumping on a hard count from Romo on a fourth-and-1 play. All in all, however, Callaway has had a nice camp and is pushing Brent for the backup nose job.

** WR Cole Beasley made two middle-of-the-field catches that led to immediate timeouts by giving himself up. Beasley has done a nice job since coming back from his mini-retirement.

** Orton was late on a crossing route to WR Tim Benford in the final team period, which allowed S Danny McCray to come down to break up the route. Benford was open earlier in his route, but it looked like Orton was waiting for him to clear through another defensive window.

** In the morning walkthrough, back-to-back false starts got RT Doug Free kicked out for a snap. Arkin moved on the second snap and was also replaced. Pat McQuistan replaced Free and Derrick Dockery replaced Arkin. Only for a snap.

** Ps Chris Jones and Delbert Alvarado worked on the flip-flop punt that Mat McBriar had perfected. Jones did not have that kick in his arsenal last year and seemed to do a decent job with it, however, with not as much rotation as McBriar.

** Keep an eye on the undrafted Benford during the preseason games. He is a smooth route runner and uses his hands to catch the ball more than his body. In one-on-one drills against CB Lionel Smith, Benford ran a double-move comeback to the sideline, creating perfect separation for a Romo throw.

Camp observations: It's a dog day

August, 6, 2012
OXNARD, Calif. -- Jason Witten called Monday’s practice one of the dog days of camp because of the number of reps from Sunday’s practice and the focus on short-yardage and goal-line running in the afternoon.

** Fans cry out for the end zone fade to WR Dez Bryant whenever the Cowboys get near the end zone. You would’ve been happy Monday. Bryant caught a fade from QB Tony Romo for a touchdown over CB Mario Butler in two-minute work. The play was set up by what seemed to be a somewhat dubious pass interference call on CB Orlando Scandrick

** The second-team offense also scored in its two-minute work with Cole Beasley working the slot to get the score after the defense failed to line up properly. That score was also set up by a dubious pass interference call on S Mana Silva on a throw to Beasley that seemed uncatchable. Beasley had three catches on the drive.

** It was a shaky day for the contenders in the backup receiver role. Dwayne Harris had a drop that led to assistant head coach Jimmy Robinson throwing his play sheet in the air. Kevin Ogletree had a drop and Andre Holmes was invisible.

** Newly-minted starting S Barry Church made a nice break on a throw to FB Lawrence Vickers, but secondary coach Jerome Henderson has higher standards. He wanted Church to go for the interception.

** TE James Hanna did a nice job sealing DE Sean Lissemore on two runs to start the team-run period. Hanna also had a couple of catches on the day in getting more work with the regular offense.

** CB C.J. Wilson had a good day with a number of breakups, including one to Hanna in the flat. One of his teammates told him to go for the pick instead of the knockdown and he might have been correct. The drive ended in Beasley’s touchdown.

** It’s a Penn State thing. LB Dan Connor slid by G David Arkin to stop Felix Jones behind the line, then Sean Lee shrugged off Vickers to stop DeMarco Murray on the next play.

** G Mackenzy Bernadeau must have passed his conditioning test because owner and general manager Jerry Jones said the guard will get some work Tuesday. Bernadeau took some walkthrough snaps for the first time Monday morning.

** Something to note: Pat McQuistan and Ronald Leary did some pre-practice snapping, which is a sign the team isn’t pleased with the in-house work of the backups so far. They don't seem ready to look outside for help.

**Veteran Gs Derrick Dockery and Daniel Loper were in pads for the first time since signing and DE Kenyon Coleman had a rude welcoming to Loper in one-on-one pass rush drills, shucking him to the ground to get to the passer.

** WR Raymond Radway was yanked from a play when he lined up on the left side when he was supposed to be on the right. He was replaced by Donavon Kemp. Radway has had some issues in lining up in the correct spot.

Another look at the 53-man roster

June, 20, 2012
IRVING, Texas – The other day Tim MacMahon was gutsy to put out his first 53-man roster prediction for the Cowboys. If you haven’t taken a look at it, click here.

Instead of going forward with my own 53-man roster prediction since most of the names will be the same, I’ll just list my differences. And as Tim pointed out, this is ridiculously premature, so don’t hold it against us when the team makes the final cuts.

Cornerback: Tim went with Mario Butler as his fifth cornerback. I’m going with undrafted rookie Isaac Madison, who was working with the first team sub defenses, which means he is ahead of Butler, who spent last year on the practice squad.

Safety: Tim went with five safeties: Gerald Sensabaugh, Brodney Pool, Barry Church, Danny McCray and Matt Johnson. I’m going with four safeties right now and Pool is the odd man out. Again this is fluid and things change, but I’m going with a sixth cornerback and that is undrafted rookie Lionel Smith, who took over for Madison on the last day of minicamp, which means he is also ahead of Butler.

Outside linebacker: Tim went with undrafted Adrian Hamilton as the fifth outside linebacker. I can see that happening and you’re banking on the future with him as a pass rusher. It makes sense right now, but I’m going with four outside linebackers in order to put defensive end Clifton Geathers on the roster. The Cowboys have put almost two years into developing Geathers and I think he might be a Jerry Jones’ pet cat.

There are some other possible changes from Tim’s roster, but I’m conflicted on it. In other words, I’m giving myself some wiggle room for the future.

Here they are:

Defensive line: Tim has Marcus Spears over Kenyon Coleman and notes Coleman’s $1.9 million salary as a negative. Marcus Spears makes $2 million and was not as productive as Coleman last year. Plus, Coleman was a Rob Ryan guy in Cleveland.

Offensive line: I believe Pat McQuistan makes it but don’t count out Kevin Kowalski. The problem is that you’re left with only three tackles on the 53 if McQuistan is out. That might be too light, but the Cowboys did it last year. Let’s see how the young undrafted guys develop in camp. If they do well enough you might be better served to go with your fourth tackle on the practice squad.

Fullback/tight end: Tim went with one fullback and three tight ends. I can see either two fullbacks or four tight ends and that could come at the expense of a third quarterback. Undrafted tight end Andrew Szczerba is not the most gifted athletically but he could be an in-line blocker they lack as a backup. And here’s another thought as a possible blocking tight end: outside linebacker Alex Albright. He made the team as an undrafted rookie last year and showed a knack for being in the right spot at the right time. He can also play special teams. It might be worth a look to see if he can block some as well.

Wide receiver: Don’t rule out Dwayne Harris. He has changed his body from a year ago and is moving much better. His ability to be a return man might help his cause. If Kevin Ogletree is not the No. 3 receiver, I don’t know if it would make sense to keep him because he doesn’t help enough on special teams.

5 Wonders: Tony Romo back shoulder throws

June, 20, 2012
IRVING, Texas -- We’ve got about five weeks to go before quarterbacks, first-year players, injured players and rookies report to Valley Ranch for workouts before the team flies to Oxnard, Calif., so there are plenty of things to wonder about.

Here is the latest installment of Five Wonders:

** I wonder if we’ll see the back-shoulder throw be a big part of the Cowboys' offense in 2012. Two years ago it certainly looked that way given the way Tony Romo was throwing them in training camp with Miles Austin, Roy Williams and Patrick Crayton in camp. Then the season started and we didn’t really see it much before Romo suffered a season-ending collarbone injury. To me, the back shoulder throw is impossible for a cornerback to defend. Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers might be the best at it in the league with his receivers and Drew Brees and Jimmy Graham might be the best quarterback-tight end combo. It takes time for the quarterback, tight ends and receivers to become comfortable in reading the defenders’ alignments for such a throw. With Dez Bryant entering his third year, Austin healthy and Witten able to push the middle of the field, Romo should be in position to make more back-shoulder throws this year. We saw hints of those throws in the OTAs and mini-camp.

** The Cowboys have five tight ends on the 90-man roster, but only Jason Witten would be considered a top blocker. John Phillips could be an overall upgrade from Martellus Bennett as the No. 2 tight end, but in-line blocking is not his strong suit. The others are James Hanna, Andrew Szczerba and newly claimed John Nalbone. Szczerba might be the best blocker. I wonder if the team’s approach to the tight end position could mean the addition of Pat McQuistan is more than just a camp filler. They will not waste Witten as a blocker because of what he means to the passing game. McQuistan served as a tight end in jumbo packages for New Orleans last year and the Saints managed to throw out of that formation as well. I also wonder if it means the team could keep two fullbacks on the 53-man roster with Lawrence Vickers and Shaun Chapas, but I think it’s more of a McQuistan thing than a fullback thing.

**The Cowboys signed Brodney Pool early in free agency, but he received only a $100,000 signing bonus to go with a $1 million base salary. He took most of the first-team reps in the organized team activities and mini-camp, but I wonder if he is a lock to make the final roster. Some inside Valley Ranch wanted Pool over another Rob Ryan guy, Abe Elam, last year, but the Cowboys went with Elam instead. In the OTAs and minicamp practices that were open to the media, Pool was hardly noticeable. Maybe that’s a good thing, I don’t know. Maybe things will change when the pads come on. But we heard raves about Barry Church and Matt Johnson, one of their fourth-round picks last April, and Danny McCray is their best special teamer. Add Gerald Sensabaugh to the mix and you’re talking about five safeties, including Pool. At some point, it might be a numbers game or the team’s willingness to pay a guaranteed $1 million for a veteran once he’s on the opening week roster. And there’s this: Mana Silva, who was signed late last season, might be a name to watch when camp opens, too.

** I wonder if the Cowboys will bring in more competition for Dan Bailey. Not to take the kicker's job, mind you, but simply to keep some pressure on him. Bailey had a tremendous rookie season, making 32 of 37 field goal attempts and winning four games with late kicks. His kickoffs were better than they thought too. Jason Garrett mentioned at the close of the offseason that Bailey has added strength in 2012. The Cowboys have Delbert Alvarado on the roster, but he is also working as a punter. Bailey might be better served to have another leg in camp. It’s not that he can’t handle it. He showed last year he doesn’t mind the competition. Some kickers don’t like it. Nick Folk did not like it when the team drafted David Buehler in 2009.

** Bruce Carter earned a lot of raves before a hamstring strain kept him out of the final two days of minicamp. I wonder if people were/are jumping the gun on him. Like Pool, I just didn’t see him make plays in the passing game. I’ll give him a pass in the running game because without pads on it’s hard to evaluate just about anything. But Carter’s strength is his ability to run and cover, and I can’t remember a pass breakup during the team and seven-on-seven periods that I charted. Now, covering Witten is difficult for every linebacker in football, I get that. But, as Bill Parcells used to say, I’m not getting the anointing oils out just yet. My belief is that Dan Connor will be the “starter,” which means he will play running downs, and Carter will play passing downs, which means he will play a higher percentage of snaps in 2012.

Cowboys close to signing Pat McQuistan

June, 8, 2012
IRVING, Texas -- The Cowboys are close to an agreement with Pat McQuistan after working out the veteran offensive lineman Friday.

McQuistan’s agent, Ken Staninger, said his client had a good visit with the team and was hopeful a deal could be completed soon. The Cowboys have made a one-year offer.

McQuistan was a seventh-round pick of the Cowboys in 2006. He played 10 games last year for New Orleans and started eight of 16 games for Miami in 2010 after he was acquired in a trade from the Cowboys. From 2006-09 he played in 40 games for the Cowboys without a start.

The Cowboys signed backup tackle Jermey Parnell to a three-year extension prior to the draft that included a $1 million signing bonus, however, he has not seen meaningful playing time in his two years with the club.

McQuistan can play guard and tackle and offers insurance with projected starter Mackenzy Bernadeau coming back from hip surgery.

To make room for an eventual signing of McQuistan the Cowboys cut undrafted rookie Taylor Dever on Friday.
MOBILE, Ala. -- ESPN NFL Draft expert Mel Kiper went back in history and redrafted the 2006 class for every team.

That year the Cowboys drafted linebacker Bobby Carpenter from Ohio State. Carpenter's claim to fame might have been that NFC wild-card playoff loss at Seattle where he played out of his mind.

Ben and Skin ask if you would you give up Demarco Murray or Sean Lee to get that extra little bump to move up in the draft? Which one would you part with?

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Carpenter was a disappointment overall.

Kiper now says the Cowboys should have taken South Carolina cornerback Johnathan Joseph with the 18th pick. Kiper also says Houston should have bypassed Mario Williams with the top pick and selected Haloti Ngata, the defensive tackle from Oregon.

Here's a link to Kiper's selections (you need to be an ESPN Insider to view it).

We look at the Cowboys' draft picks that year:

Bobby Carpenter, first round, LB: The Cowboys could never find a role for Carpenter, whether it was at inside linebacker or outside linebacker. He just wasn't physical enough and always seemed overmatched. The best thing about Carpenter is he became one of Tony Romo's closest friends. After the Cowboys moved on from Carpenter, with a trade to St. Louis for tackle Alex Barron, he switched teams again. Carpenter played for Detroit in 2011 and picked off a Romo pass in the second half as part of the Lions' dramatic rally to overcome a 24-3 deficit.

Anthony Fasano, second round, TE: A physical tight end that just never took his game to the next level. He wasn't going to compete on Jason Witten's level, but he wasn't athletic enough, like Martellus Bennett was, to warrant more playing time. Cowboys eventually traded him to the Miami Dolphins. Fasano has been pretty good in Miami, catching 18 touchdowns in four seasons while Bennett has just four in four seasons.

Jason Hatcher, third round, DE: It took some time but Hatcher finally emerged as the pass-rushing end the Cowboys thought they had when they selected him from Grambling. Hatcher eventually took a starting role at end this season from Marcus Spears, a former first-round pick. Hatcher finished the season with a career-high 4.5 sacks. He will probably start at end in 2012. Hatcher is the only player from this draft class still on the team.

Skyler Green, fourth round, WR: Bill Parcells had plans for this man. The problem was that the plans were a mess. A returner, a wide receiver and a running back eventually, Green couldn't find any playing time. The Cowboys should have passed on him unless they had a defined role for him, and they didn't.

Patrick Watkins, fifth round, S: He started nine games his rookie season, picking off three passes and knocking down seven more. But Watkins wasn't physical enough for the defensive coaches and while a free safety had trouble making plays on the ball. He didn't play in the NFL last season after spending 2010 in San Diego. He was long and lean, very athletic, but just couldn't find consistency.

Montavious Stanley, sixth round, DT: He's bounced around among five NFL teams, including two stints with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Stanley just wasn't a fit with the Cowboys. He had the size to play inside (6-2, 302 pounds), but like most late round picks, he didn't play with the needed consistency.

Pat McQuistan, seventh round, T: He might have been a nice find to possibly replace either Flozell Adams or Marc Colombo at one of the tackle spots, but he never developed into what the Cowboys hoped. He played mainly on special teams before going to Miami in 2010. He did start eight games for the Dolphins and in 2011 he played 10 games for the New Orleans Saints.

E.J. Whitley, seventh round, G: The Texas Tech alum was the 224th player selected that year. He didn't do enough to warrant a roster spot.

Former Cowboys still playing

January, 6, 2012
IRVING, Texas -- One of Jason Garrett’s final messages to the Cowboys’ players on Monday was to watch the playoffs and let the feeling burn a little and serve as motivation in the offseason.

If the players take Garrett up on that message, then they will see some familiar faces playing or coaching on wild-card weekend. There are 10 former players among the six teams playing this weekend and five former coaches.

Cincinnati – Mike Zimmer, Pacman Jones, Dennis Roland
Pittsburgh – Shaun Suisham
Houston – Wade Phillips, Reggie Herring, Bobby King
New York GiantsChris Canty. (Isaiah Stanback is on the practice squad.)
Detroit – Bobby Carpenter, Leonard Davis, Stephen Peterman
New Orleans – Pat McQuistan, Scott Shanle, Sean Payton

Only Denver and Atlanta do not have former Cowboys players and coaches.

Boys on the bubble: Who has to go?

August, 30, 2010
Siavvi/Hurd/McCannUS Presswire/AP PhotoWhat will the future hold for Junior Siavii, Sam Hurd and Bryan McCann? The Cowboys will be cutting five players Tuesday, so we'll see.

After cutting veteran safety Patrick Watkins on Monday, the Cowboys still need to release four more players from the 80-man roster. Some teams have done so already, such as the Jets, Bengals and Chiefs.

Dallas has some interesting decisions to make at a few positions, so here's our weekly look at the bubble players.


The bubble: Mike Tepper, Travis Bright, Will Barker and Pat McQuistan

Outlook: It seems 10 players will earn checks this fall who are offensive linemen. The injury to Sam Young (sprained MCL in right knee that keeps him out three to four weeks) won't hurt his status. Young, Doug Free, Alex Barron, Marc Colombo and Robert Brewster are the tackles in 2010. The inside positions are unsettled somewhat. Bright is a long shot to overtake Phil Costa as the No. 3 center, but McQuistan could make a case for himself if Montrae Holland struggles vs. Miami on Thursday night. But we doubt it.


The bubble:Sam Hurd and Jesse Holley

Outlook: Hurd has done a decent job of catching the ball, but he's not making anybody say, "Hey he should be on the team because he's special." Special teams is the same way. The Cowboys know he can do it, but there are some younger players who have more upside than Hurd. Holley was in the lead to make this team on special teams, but fell off the last two games. The Cowboys should keep five wide receivers. At some point, Dallas might try to trade Hurd for a sixth- or seventh-round pick. If that can't happen, Hurd could be sent home.


The bubble:Martin Rucker and Scott Sicko

Outlook: When Rucker (hamstring) was deemed healthy, he was able to participate in practices and games but he hasn't impressed anyone enough. Sicko had to be convinced to come to training camp, and he should have stayed home. A concussion also slowed his progress. The Cowboys have an interesting decision here because they could keep Jason Witten and Martellus Bennett and then go with two fullbacks. If it happens, Rucker and Sicko will go home. But Sicko could be worth keeping. If he clears waivers, he could move to the practice squad.


The bubble: Pat Watkins, Jamar Wall, Bryan McCann, Danny McCray

Outlook: It's about consistency. McCray had three special teams tackles last week vs. San Diego. So how many did he have vs. Houston on Saturday? Zero. If McCray makes this team, it's because of his special teams work. Barry Church is a better safety than him, and it seems McCray is missing in action against the run. Watkins can still make this team over McCray, but if it's a financial thing, McCray makes $320,000; Watkins will earn $1.17 million. (UPDATE: Watkins was officially cut Monday morning.)


The bubble:Junior Siavii and Josh Brent

Outlook: There are some in the organization that love Brent, but Siavii is a better run stopper and he could move to end if necessary. Siavii, overall, is a better player, but it wouldn't be a surprise if the Cowboys kept three nose tackles. In 2006, they did. Brent, if he stays, will be inactive on Sundays.


The bubble:Leon Williams, Steve Octavien, Brandon Sharpe, Victor Butler, Jason Williams and Brandon Williams.

Outlook: Jason and Brandon Williams (not related) will be here, but not without some raised eyebrows. Octavien and Butler played steady, so their spots seem secure. The Cowboys could go with nine linebackers, or maybe 10. If it's 10, who is better: Leon Williams or Brandon Sharpe?