New DE Everson Griffen Delivers Charged Statement to Cowboys Fans [WATCH]

Everson Griffen

Getty Everson Griffen

The ink barely dry on his prove-it contract, Everson Griffen made his Dallas Cowboys marriage official with a special video message to the fan base.

“Cowboys Nation, I’m here, baby. It’s time to get back on the grind,” Griffen says in a brief clip posted to the team’s Twitter account. “I’m excited to be with my teammates. I’m excited about this new journey. I’m excited about working towards going and get this championship. It’s that time to grind. It’s that time to learn. It’s that time to go get it. Can’t wait, Cowboys Nation. Let’s go!”

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ICYMI

The Cowboys and Griffen on Wednesday agreed to a one-year deal worth up to $6 million. He’ll earn $3 million in base salary for the 2020 season, with another $3 million available via incentives, ESPN’s Kimberley Martin reported.

Griffen, 32, will need to pass the appropriate coronavirus tests upon joining his new team at training camp. Once there, he’ll begin assimilating his way into base and sub-packages as a hand-in-the-dirt pass-rusher, bookending DeMarcus Lawrence.

A 2010 fourth-round pick who spent his entire career with the Vikings, Griffen has made 351 career tackles, 254 solo stops, and 74.5 sacks across 10 professional campaigns. He’s notched at least five sacks in eight consecutive seasons and has 26.5 QB takedowns over the past three years. He’s been voted to four Pro Bowls and was a second-team All-Pro selection in 2017, when he recorded 13 sacks.

Griffen totaled 41 tackles (11 tackles for loss), eight sacks, and an interception in 2019. He also accumulated 66 quarterback pressures, 14th-most out of all NFL edge defenders, per Pro Football Focus.

Griffen became the latest “name” player Dallas added this offseason to its rebuilt defensive line, joining veterans Gerald McCoy, Dontari Poe and Aldon Smith and rookies Bradlee Anae and Neville Gallimore.


Assistant Coach Helped Recruit EG to Big D

The Cowboys weren’t the only team in the Griffen sweepstakes. But they were the only team with a secret weapon: ex-Vikings defensive coordinator George Edwards, who was hired earlier this year as a senior defensive assistant under new head coach Mike McCarthy.

To hear NFL Network’s Jane Slater tell it, he played a key role in Griffen’s acquisition. Slater relayed Thursday what she heard from an NFL source, that Edwards is a trusted ally for a sometimes-bombastic 32-year-old who has struggled with mental health issues.

“We have good people that have been around him and that he believes in,” the source said. “George Edwards one of them.”

In 2019, under Edwards’ tutelage, Minnesota finished sixth in points allowed, 13th against the run, 14th in total yards, and 15th against the pass. An active unit prone to forcing turnovers, they ranked third in the league in interceptions (17), fourth in pass breakups (98) and forced fumbles (19), and fifth in sacks (48).

Griffen was among the beneficiaries, tallying eight sacks and an interception across 15 games. His coach’s recommendation no doubt helped, but Dallas knew what they were getting; in their 28-24 home loss to the Vikings last November, Griffen stuffed the stat sheet with five tackles (two solo), four QB hits, 1.5 tackles-for-loss, and a half-sack.


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Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL

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