Dallas Cowboys: Safety position is a long way from settled

Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports
Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports /

Apparently the Dallas Cowboys are just waiting for COVID protocols to formally announce singing Malik Hooker. But even with that signing, the safety position is still unsettled.

Dallas brought in Keanu Neal, Jayron Kearse, and Damontae Kazee in free agency to go along with Donovan Wilson, Darian Thompson, Steven Parker, Israel Mukuamu, and Tyler Coyle. With as much help as the Cowboys need at safety, the moves felt a little flat. A new defensive scheme would help and if Kazee could get back to full health, and Wilson takes another step or two, Dallas could theoretically have an acceptable safety group.

However, it seems that Wilson came into OTAs fresh off an unfocused offseason and there are even some questions about his dedication to the game. Kazee has not performed well thus far, and it looks like his injury could play a role. Neal seems to be a role-specific player, Thompson isn’t impressing, Parker seems to be a camp body, and the rookies Coyle and Mukuamu do not seem close to being ready. This has all led to Malik Hooker getting signed.

The safety position for the Dallas Cowboys remains unsettled and now has more questions than answers.

Ideally, Hooker would be an instant upgrade at free safety and Wilson gets on track to claim starting strong safety. Keep in mind, if healthy, Kazee and Hooker are your two best players. The problem is, we know Kazee isn’t 100% and Hooker is still recovering himself. While we don’t know what Hooker will look like, a torn Achillies is not easy to come back from for a defensive back. Listening to the staff talk in interviews, they have specifically stated that questions are at safety.

Bryan Broaddus was asked about the position and he described it as “a mess.”

This is not what many fans wanted to hear, yet again. It has been over a decade since the Cowboys really addressed the safety position. We had have such a low bar at this point for the position we felt like Jeff Heath was a good safety for a while there. Jeff. Heath.

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Watching draft after draft roll by without a safety being called early has been a bane of the Cowboys’ faithful. Every year fans want a safety in free agency and every year the front office throws together a patchwork of injured players, cast-offs, and has-beens.

However, Hooker could find a home here in Dallas. While he has injury issues and has had trouble staying on the field, when he plays, he has been really good. Health is certainly an issue, but the moment Hooker is signed, he is the most talented safety on the roster, and it isn’t really close. Wilson might be the starting strong safety, but Hooker has the size to play both positions. Should the Cowboys find Kazee and Hooker are their best players, nothing says they are not the starting two. If Wilson continues to develop, the Cowboys could go Hooker and Wilson.

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Over the next few weeks, the Cowboys will certainly try everything they can at the position. Every player on the roster will be given a chance to impress, or at least show they can start. The position is far from settled, and it may be a while before we have answers. Hooker may be just the first domino to fall.

  • Published on 07/27/2021 at 12:22 PM
  • Last updated at 07/27/2021 at 12:22 PM