The Dallas Cowboys have rarely been big spenders when it comes to bringing free agents to Big D. Instead, the front office in Dallas has been much more focused on drafting well and re-signing their own free agents in recent years.
So it’s not unusual to find the Cowboys sitting on their hands during the early days of free agency, opting instead to catch falling veterans at a more reasonable price. It’s a philosophy that has served the team well in the past and continues to do so to the dismay of their faithful fanbase.
This method, while frustrating to those on the outside looking in, has resulted in the Cowboys landing recent free agents like safeties Jayron Kearse and Malik Hooker, defensive end Tarell Basham, and defensive tackle Carlos Watkins just last season. All of whom contributed to the Cowboys’ impressive 12-5 record in 2021.
That trend has continued this offseason. And the latest free agent that could be destined for a big role in Dallas this upcoming season is linebacker/defensive end Dante Fowler. The Cowboys signed the veteran pass rusher to a one-year deal this week. (reported salary details here) The 27-year old is entering his seventh NFL season after being the third overall selection in the 2015 draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Coming out of Florida, Fowler was viewed as the top edge rusher in his draft class. That class included Nebraska pass rusher Randy Gregory, the man Dante is set to replace in Dallas this year. In his final season as a Gator, Fowler posted career-highs in total tackles (60), tackles for loss (15.5) and sacks (8.5).
Fowler had his best season as a pro in 2019, racking up a career-high 11.5 sacks playing alongside the three-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year, defensive tackle Aaron Donald. The Dallas Cowboys are undoubtedly hoping Dante Fowler can have similar production pairing up with their defensive standouts, Micah Parsons and DeMarcus Lawrence.