Been telling anyone who would listen all summer that - stop the insanity - Sam Hurd would make the Dallas Cowboys' final roster over Jesse Holley. Reasoning? Holley did nothing better than Hurd and owner Jerry Jones, in this "all in" season, would not let financial implications dilute his team's talent.
I cannot, however, explain the
trading dumping of Patrick Crayton. Or, for that matter, the release of cornerback Cletis Gordon.
Talked to secondary coach Dave Campo during training camp and he said of Gordon: "We've found a keeper." A guy who played for Wade Phillips in San Diego, Gordon led the team with 10 camp interceptions and had one in the preseason. But he was cut Saturday, leaving Dallas with only three cornerbacks (Terence Newman, Mike Jenkins and Orlando Scandrik). Apparently the Cowboys saw something none of the rest of us did in rookie Akwasi Owusu-Ansah. When teams go to four wide receivers, the speedy safety-turned-corner will apparently be on the field. Gulp.
Now, about Crayton.
No other real surprises on the cut from 75 players to 53. Stephen McGee solidified his roster spot with Thursday's performance against the Miami Dolphins, fullbacks Deon Anderson and Chris Gronkowski made the squad and nose tackle Josh Brent beat out Junior Siavii to back up Jay Ratiff. Little surprised that Steve Octavien didn't make the team, but the Cowboys believe the likes of Jason Williams and Leon Williams are upgrades there.
As for Crayton, I know he isn't flashy and I'm fully aware a lot of you never forgave him for the crucial drop and half-assed route on the next-to-last play against the New York Giants in the '07 playoff loss. But to me he was this team's version of Kelvin Martin. Sure-handed. Speedy enough. Not spectacular, but solid.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Certainly, from what I saw during camp and preseason, he was more reliable than Kevin Ogletree. But on Friday the Cowboys sent him to the San Diego Chargers for a seventh-round draft choice. Saved Jones $2 million, but in an uncapped year with a potential lockout looming that shouldn't be a factor. Right?
I believe Miles Austin is legit. I believe Dez Bryant will be Rookie of the Year. I have zero faith in Roy Williams and only a smidge more in Ogletree.
Not saying the move is going to totally harpoon the Cowboys' season. But I betcha at some point we find ourselves craving some Crayton. Maybe, for example, when the Cowboys need a sure-handed punt returner with the potential to take it to the house.
I know Crayton was a little mouthy, but I also think he was underappreciated.