Dallas Cowboys: Ray Dominguez

Cowboys release four players

February, 28, 2014
Feb 28
3:33
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IRVING, Texas -- The Dallas Cowboys released defensive linemen Corvey Irvin and Everette Brown and offensive linemen Ray Dominguez and Jeff Olson on Friday, freeing up less than $1 million against the cap.

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Brown played in seven games last season and had seven tackles in a sack after joining the team on Oct. 29. Irvin joined the Cowboys on Nov. 12 and had five tackles. Dominguez spent last year on the practice squad and was signed to a futures’ deal after the season ended. Olson suffered a concussion in training camp.

The Cowboys will have more work to do to get under the 2014 salary cap, which is projected at $133 million, but will be able to take care of most of that with restructuring of contracts, like those of Tony Romo, Sean Lee and Orlando Scandrick. The biggest decision will be in relation to DeMarcus Ware, who is set to count $16 million against the cap.

Cowboys sign four players

January, 8, 2014
Jan 8
4:43
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IRVING, Texas -- The Dallas Cowboys signed four players Wednesday to futures contracts in hopes they find another Nick Hayden.

Guard Chris DeGeare, defensive end Tristan Okpalaugo and linebackers Quinton Spears and Jabara Williams joined the group of practice squad players that re-signed with the team after the regular-season finale loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.

Hayden, a defensive tackle, was signed Feb. 11, 2013 to a futures deal and started every game.

DeGeare was among the New York Giants’ final cuts in 2013 and was out of football, like Hayden, in 2012. He was a fifth-round pick in 2010 by the Minnesota Vikings and started five games. He spent the 2011 season on the Vikings' practice squad. He spent six weeks on the Tennessee Titans practice squad in 2011 but was not picked up after his Oct. 17 release. He signed with the Giants on Jan. 8, 2013.

Okpalaugo had two tackles and a sack against the Cowboys in the Hall of Fame Game against the Miami Dolphins. After he was cut by Miami he spent eight days on the Vikings’ practice squad before he was cut Sept. 10, 2013.

Spears played in 13 games for the Cleveland Browns in 2011 and was out of football in 2012 before signing with the Indianapolis Colts. He was released by the Colts last September and did not sign with another team.

Williams spent time with the St. Louis Rams (seventh-round pick in 2011) and Chicago Bears. He re-signed with the Rams in 2012 but was cut coming out of training camp in 2013 and was not in football.

Among the 21 players the Cowboys signed to futures contracts last year, five spent time on the 53-man roster or practice squad, including Hayden, Tim Benford, Micah Pellern, Andre Smith and Ray Dominguez.

Cowboys turn to Mackenzy Bernadeau

October, 29, 2013
10/29/13
10:50
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IRVING, Texas – With Brian Waters’ season looking all but over because of a triceps injury, the Dallas Cowboys will look to Mackenzy Bernadeau once again.

Signed as an unrestricted free agent last season, Bernadeau started every game in 2012 and the first three games this season. Coach Jason Garrett said Bernadeau did a “good job” with the work Sunday against the Detroit Lions following Waters’ departure.

“Hopefully he's been positively influenced by watching Brian play and just learn from that experience as well,” Garrett said Monday before the team learned of the severity of Waters' injury. “He's played a lot of snaps for us and he's been banged up for the last couple of years and he's played a ton of football for us last year and a lot of football early for us. So hopefully he'll be ready to go and did a nice job getting his first snaps back in there.”

If the Cowboys give Waters the chance to get healthy, they might have to add a guard to the 53-man roster. They re-signed David Arkin to the practice squad on Monday after he was released over the weekend. He has not taken an offensive snap in two-plus seasons. They also have Ray Dominguez on the practice squad.

If they don’t make a move, then center Phil Costa would serve as the backup interior lineman on gameday.

Dallas Cowboys add DT Marvin Austin

October, 21, 2013
10/21/13
4:14
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IRVING, Texas -- The Dallas Cowboys filled their final roster spot Monday by adding defensive tackle Marvin Austin.

Austin
Austin, 6-2, 312 pounds, was cut by the Miami Dolphins on Oct. 13 after playing in two games and making one tackle. A former second-round pick by the New York Giants in 2011, he missed his rookie year with a pectoral muscle injury and played in eight games last year with eight tackles.

The Cowboys liked Austin coming out of the draft, but because they were a 3-4 defense at the time he was not a good fit.

“He’s one of those guys we kept our eye on,” coach Jason Garrett said. “Obviously our situation on the defensive line we’ve had a lot of different injuries up there, so you look at the landscape of personnel and see you who can bring in and try to help your football team. He was playing with Miami just a couple of weeks ago. They released him. He’s in pretty decent shape because he’s been in training camp and been playing. We’d like to tap into some of that ability that caused him to be such a high draft pick.”

The spot became available on Friday when the Cowboys put defensive end Edgar Jones on short-term injured reserve. Jones had sports hernia surgery on Friday and is ineligible to play until Dec. 15 against the Green Bay Packers.

The Cowboys now have 10 defensive linemen on the 53-man roster and five have been added since Sept. 3.

The Cowboys also re-signed guard Ray Dominguez and wide receiver Jamar Newsome to the practice squad. They were released in a procedural move last Saturday when the Cowboys were down to 52 players on their roster.

A look at Cowboys possible cuts

August, 25, 2013
8/25/13
1:00
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IRVING, Texas -- By Tuesday, the Dallas Cowboys will have to make 13 roster moves to get to the 75-player limit.

While some teams will make the moves before the deadline, the sense is the Cowboys will not be announcing their cuts on Sunday, so we’ll take some educated (stop laughing) guesses.

The only lock is that defensive end Tyrone Crawford will be moved to injured reserve as he recovers from a torn Achilles. He was hurt in the first training camp practice but if the Cowboys had put him on IR before the cut to 75, they would have had to expose him to waivers, and he would have been claimed. This move keeps Crawford with the team.

With the starters not playing, with perhaps some exceptions, you have to keep numbers at certain spots over others. Running back Kendial Lawrence might not make the team, but if he is cut, then Dallas has two backs ready for Thursday in Phillip Tanner and Joseph Randle because of Lance Dunbar’s foot injury.

Another question is at quarterback. Do the Cowboys keep Nick Stephens and play him versus Houston on Thursday and sit Alex Tanney? As we look at the 12 remaining moves, we’ll go with the idea that Stephens will be around.

Possible cuts:

Wide receiver: Anthony Amos, Eric Rogers, Jared Green. If Cole Beasley is healthy, then the Cowboys would have six receivers to play against the Texans. That’s enough to get through the game. If Beasley isn’t healthy, then Rogers could be kept. Rogers and Green could be brought back to the practice squad after the final cuts on Aug. 31.

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First-team O-line sees extended action

August, 17, 2013
8/17/13
8:59
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GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Tony Romo, Jason Witten, Dez Bryant, Miles Austin and DeMarco Murray might have played only three series Saturday at Arizona, but that wasn’t the case for the first-team offensive line.

Tyron Smith, David Arkin, Travis Frederick, Mackenzy Bernadeau and Doug Free played a series into the third quarter. Arkin played even longer.

“We’ve just been limited,” coach Jason Garrett said. “We anticipated them playing certainly the whole first half when Tony and Kyle [Orton] were in there. We were going to give them one more series because we don’t have that many guys. It was good to give them a chance to play next to each other.”

Jermey Parnell went through pregame warmups but did not dress for the game after practicing for just a few days last week in Oxnard, Calif. Ronald Leary (knee), Nate Livings (knee), Ryan Cook (back), Ray Dominguez (shoulder) and Kevin Kowalski (knee) did not dress for the game.

The entire starting offense should play into the third quarter Thursday against Cincinnati at AT&T Stadium.

Cowboys hope Leary can make quick return

August, 15, 2013
8/15/13
3:05
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OXNARD, Calif. -- The typical recovery from arthroscopic surgery is two to four weeks, but the Dallas Cowboys believe left guard Ronald Leary will need closer to two weeks than four once he has the operation on his right knee Friday.

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“We don’t think it’s too serious,” coach Jason Garrett said. “We think it can get cleaned up and he can get back on the practice field in a couple of weeks. We take those things day by day, and hopefully it is what we think it is and we’ll get it resolved.”

If it takes two weeks, then Leary would miss the final two preseason games against Cincinnati (Aug. 24) and Houston (Aug. 29), but it would allow him at least seven days of practice leading into the Sept. 8 regular-season opener against the New York Giants.

It is a setback for a line that has not been able to build continuity throughout the summer because of injuries. Last year’s starting left guard, Nate Livings, is recovering from knee surgery. Right guard Mackenzy Bernadeau missed the early part of training camp with a hamstring injury suffered in the conditioning test.

Jermey Parnell, Demetress Bell, Ryan Cook, Kevin Kowalski and Ray Dominguez have also missed time because of injuries.

“We just keep moving on,” offensive line coach/offensive coordinator Bill Callahan said. “I’m used to this. Don’t blink. Don’t flinch. Keep moving.”

But Callahan feels bad for Leary, who took most of the first-team reps in the offseason because of Livings’ absence due to a sore knee.

“He was really making tremendous progress,” Callahan said. “We just want to pick up where he left off when he comes back. He showed a lot of promise. He’s a guy who can fill that position well. We’re two guards down at that spot, we’ll have to see what we do going forward. We really haven’t finalized anything.”

The Cowboys have been linked to Brian Waters once the deal for veteran Brandon Moore fell apart, but the waiting game continues.

Offensive line fixes are complex

August, 15, 2013
8/15/13
10:00
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OXNARD, Calif. -- Bill Callahan strolled off the practice fields Tuesday with a lot on his mind.

He's trying to coach the current group of offensive line players on the Cowboys and make sure he's got the offense going in the right direction as the offensive coordinator.

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The direction of the offense overall seems OK after two preseason games, but the offensive line isn't.

Ronald Leary is the latest offensive linemen to go down with an injury. The left guard will undergo minor surgery on his knee, putting his status for the 2013 season opener against the New York Giants in doubt.

This summer, the Cowboys have lost Mackenzy Bernadeau, Nate Livings, Kevin Kowalski, Ryan Cook, Ray Dominguez and now Leary to some sort of injury.

The projected starters at guard have health issues.

In a desperate move, the team offered a contract to Brian Waters, who hasn't played in over a year. This offer came after Brandon Moore backed out of a deal with the team to retire.

Waters is a Pro Bowl guard, but who knows what type of shape he's in and if he can quickly morph into a starter without significant training camp practices.

Livings got hurt early in training camp and underwent minor knee surgery. There's talk about cutting Livings and just absorbing $1.7 million against the salary cap. Currently, the Cowboys have just a shade over $7 million in cap space available. Stephen Jones likes to have salary cap space to play with during the season to sign a veteran in case of injury.

He might have to do it.

Leary was having a solid camp until his injury. Kowalski was battling David Arkin for a backup spot at right guard before injuries ended the fight. The competition between the two is split, but it wasn't good enough to give the Cowboys a comfort level of starting them in a regular season game.

So here we are with injuries for an offensive line that's supposed to protect a $100 million quarterback in Tony Romo.

Second-guessing the Cowboys' decisions not to sign Carl Nicks and Ben Grubbs in free agency last year would be unfair. The Cowboys grabbed Livings, a productive starter with the Bengals, and Bernadeau, a talented player with the Panthers, in free agency that year. The price paid to Livings and Bernadeau was nearly a combined $30 million. Grubbs signed a five-year $35 million deal with the New Orleans Saints to replace Nicks, who signed with Tampa Bay.

Solutions for this fix are complex.

The Cowboys could increase their offer to Waters, move rookie center Travis Frederick to one of the guard spots and insert last year's starting center, Phil Costa, back to the first team. If you move Frederick, do you stunt his development? Do you weaken the center spot by moving Costa there over Frederick?


The third preseason game is Saturday afternoon in Glendale, Ariz., and the Cowboys' projected starters for the first-team offensive line are as follows: left tackle Tyron Smith, left guard Arkin, center Frederick, right guard Bernadeau and right tackle Doug Free.

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Ronald Leary to undergo MRI on knee

August, 14, 2013
8/14/13
2:31
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OXNARD, Calif. -- Cowboys left guard Ronald Leary missed the Wednesday morning walk-through because of a left knee problem. Leary, who said he expects to practice Thursday, will undergo an MRI.

Leary has a chronic condition in his left knee called osteochondritis dissecans (os-tee-o-kohn-DRY-tis DIS-uh-kanz), a joint condition where a piece of cartilage, along with a thin layer of the bone beneath it, comes loose from the end of a bone.

Coach Jason Garrett said this current knee problem isn't related to that.

"We don't think this is a serious thing," Garrett said. "We'll get the MRI and see what it looks like and we'll move forward."

David Arkin replaced Leary as the first-team left guard and Dennis Godfrey took over at guard for the second and third teams.

The Cowboys have health issues along the offensive line. Guards Kevin Kowalski (knee), Ryan Cook (back), Ray Dominguez (shoulder) and Nate Livings (knee) are missing camp because of injuries. To solve the shortage at the position, the Cowboys tried to sign Brandon Moore last week, but he elected to retire.

After Moore turned the Cowboys down, the team offered a contract to Brian Waters, who hasn't made a decision regarding his future.

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