Dallas Cowboys: Tyron Crawford

Cowboys' defensive snaps at Seattle

October, 13, 2014
IRVING, Texas -- Dallas Cowboys linebacker Rolando McClain didn't practice until Friday, but it didn't seem to affect him in the 30-23 win against the Seattle Seahawks.

He played 43 plays and finished with four tackles, a tackle for loss, a pass deflection and the game-clinching interception 20 yards from the line of scrimmage.

Anthony Spencer played a season-high 29 plays and easily had his best game of the season. He had three tackles, but he applied consistent pressure to quarterback Russell Wilson and made him move in the pocket several times.

Kyle Wilber had two pass deflections -- one was a dropped interception that he might've scored on -- in 13 plays, the most he's played in a couple of weeks.

Tyrone Crawford and Henry Melton seem to be splitting the three-technique position with Crawford doing the heavy lifting and Melton providing the change of pace.

There's still plenty of time, but you wonder if Crawford's development means the Cowboys will pass on Melton's three-year team option at the end of the season.

Cowboys' defensive snaps:
Brandon Carr 49
Orlando Scandrick 49
Justin Durant 49
J.J. Wilcox 46
Rolando McClain 43
Jeremy Mincey 42
Barry Church 41
Tyrone Crawford 37
Sterling Moore 34
Anthony Spencer 29
Nick Hayden 27
Henry Melton 24
George Selvie 22
Jack Crawford 21
Kyle Wilber 13
Jeff Heath 12
Terrell McClain 10
Lavar Edwards 5
Anthony Hitchens 4
Tyler Patmon 3

Dallas Cowboys' defensive snaps

October, 6, 2014
IRVING, Texas -- Justin Durant is showing Rod Marinelli that he can be an every down linebacker in the Dallas Cowboys' 4-3 scheme.

For the second consecutive game, Durant played every snap and he was at his best in overtime. He was the only member of the front seven to be on the field for every play.

Durant did a nice job covering Arian Foster on the Houston Texans' final offensive play, giving Jerome Mincey time to pressure quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick into throwing an incomplete pass.

Marinelli continues to manage his eight-man defensive line rotation as Henry Melton (groin, hamstring) and Anthony Spencer (knee) round into shape.

Marinelli has said he wants to keep Melton between 38-40 snaps per game. He played 20 Sunday against Houston, and 24 the previous week.

Tyrone Crawford, who seems to have found a spot at defensive tackle, led all defensive linemen with 45 snaps.

J.J. Wilcox -- 59
Brandon Carr -- 59
Orlando Scandrick -- 59
Barry Church -- 59
Justin Durant -- 59
Rolando McClain -- 47
Tyrone Crawford -- 45
Jeremy Mincey -- 41
Sterling Moore -- 37
George Selvie -- 34
Nick Hayden -- 34
Anthony Hitchens -- 33
Anthony Spencer -- 23
Jack Crawford -- 21
Henry Melton -- 20
Terrell McClain -- 18
Kyle Wilber -- 1

George Selvie looking at an encore

June, 5, 2014
IRVING, Texas -- A year ago, George Selvie did not have a job in the NFL. Today he is one of the most senior defensive linemen taking part in the Dallas Cowboys' organized team activities (OTAs).

Longtime Cowboys DeMarcus Ware and Jason Hatcher are gone. Anthony Spencer has returned but he has yet to practice because of knee surgery. Tyrone Crawford is back from an injury that kept him out last season. Henry Melton, Jeremy Mincey and Terrell McClain are in as free agents. The Cowboys also drafted DeMarcus Lawrence, Ben Gardner and Ken Bishop.

“It's kind of weird, but it's a rotating door,” Selvie said. “The NFL is never the same room. Some guys went out. Some new guys came in.”

Of the players currently able to practice, Selvie, Nick Hayden and Crawford are the longest-tenured of the Cowboys' defensive linemen, having played 16 games. And Selvie did not show up until the first week of training camp after Crawford got hurt.

The Cowboys are Selvie's fifth team. In parts of three seasons with the St. Louis Rams, Carolina Panthers and Jacksonville Jaguars, he had three sacks. He spent about six weeks last offseason with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Last year, he put up seven sacks with the Cowboys. He is their leading returner in sacks.

“Definitely I sat back and said I had a pretty good year, but having a coach like Rod [Marinelli], he said I could've had a better year,” said Selvie, who also had 39 tackles, seven tackles for loss and 22 quarterback pressures. “He showed me all my bad plays and said, ‘Look at how many plays you were that close to getting if you did this.' I definitely take that into consideration and work on the things I did wrong.”

While he has some level of seniority, Selvie, who has yet to take part in team drills in the spring because of shoulder surgery, does not feel settled just yet.

He can think back to last June when he was looking for a job.

“Some people say I probably won the job by default last year because a lot of people got hurt, but I think I came in and did what was asked of me,” Selvie said. “I went out there, played well and that's what I've got to do this year.'
IRVING, Texas -- It’s on to Week 2 of Five Wonders, and this week we hit on the Cowboys reaping early benefits from some young players:

ESPN NFL analyst Ed Werder comments on Robert Griffin III's sensational debut, the Saints bounty scandal and the state of the Cowboys.

Listen Listen
** Since this has been an over-reaction week, let’s begin to wonder about Kevin Ogletree's future with the club. He will be an unrestricted free agent after the season. For the sake of discussion, let’s just say he'll have a season somewhere between Patrick Crayton and Laurent Robinson -- in the area of 40-45 catches, 600 yards and five touchdowns. What do the Cowboys do? What does Ogletree do? He saw Robinson leave for the big bucks in Jacksonville after one great season and it would be difficult to say no to that type of cash. As for the team, they spent four years waiting for the guy to develop and they’d let him walk for nothing? One thing they won’t have to worry about is the ability to re-sign him early if they wanted to. They weren’t able to do that last year with Robinson because of the rules involving the veteran minimum salary benefit contract.

** It’s only one game, but Bruce Carter has me wondering if I missed something in training camp. He was outstanding against the Giants in the opener in his 30 snaps. Dan Connor played only four snaps, so that tells you what the coaches thought of the inside linebacker battle over the summer. Carter was more aggressive in taking on blockers and did a good job in the run game. Sometimes when linebackers get the “athletic” tag, it means they’re run-around guys. Carter wasn’t that against the Giants. There’s still a long way to go, but the Cowboys’
patience with last year’s second-round pick could pay off in a big way this year.

** I wonder if Chris Jones can keep this up. He has punted 12 times in three games over the last two seasons, and the Cowboys have given up just six return yards. Six!!!!! He has had net averages of 43 yards, 38.8 yards and 51.5 yards against the Giants (twice) and Seattle. This week he sees the Seahawks again. Seattle returner Leon Washington is as dangerous as they come, and he had a 52-yard punt return vs. Arizona last week. Jones has done a great job of keeping the ball close to the sidelines in his three games, limiting any opportunity for a return to bust free. Washington is one of many tests of the schedule for the Cowboys’ coverage teams this year.

** This might surprise some people, but here comes praise for Wade Phillips: If a guy showed he could handle a role, Phillips would play him. It wasn’t some reward for being on the team, but a way to keep all 53 guys involved. I wonder if that philosophy is still going on with the Cowboys because the only active player not to play a snap vs. the Giants was backup quarterback Kyle Orton. Safety Mana Silva did a nice job in the “dollar” package in Danny McCray's absence.
Rookie defensive end Tyron Crawford saw second-half snaps. Rookie tight end James Hanna saw first-half snaps and caught a 10-yard pass. Cornerback Mario Butler saw some snaps, and not just when Orlando Scandrick needed an IV. Tackle Jermey Parnell lined up at tight end once in a jumbo package (and missed his fourth-down block). Teams can’t be afraid to use guys. The Cowboys weren’t vs. New York.

** I wonder (really I hope, but the title of this post is Five Wonders) if the NFL will adjust how it works the opening game of the season. The Cowboys were put in an unfair position of playing the last preseason game of Week 1 at Oakland, and therefore were joined by the Raiders as the last teams to report to camp. The Giants had three extra days of practice on the Cowboys. That’s an unfair advantage. The Cowboys could have started camp earlier with an exemption, but the NFLPA would not go along. Executive vice president Stephen Jones has said he'd like to see the reporting dates for training camp relate to the regular-season opener, not the preseason opener. It almost seems to make too much sense, doesn’t it? But it wasn’t just the reporting time that made it difficult to prepare. There were many issues involving waivers and claims and when they could get on the practice field. The Cowboys beat the Giants, which made some of the headaches disappear, but there’s no way the league should put teams in such a bind in the future.