Donovan Wilson, a projected starter at safety for the Dallas Cowboys, was noticeably absent from Organized Team Activities and the club’s recent minicamp practices.
Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy confirmed, per The Athletic’s Jon Machota, that Wilson sustained an “undisclosed setback” stemming from a “slight injury” but should be ready to return at the onset of training camp in late July.
“A little soreness, but it’s nothing that’s going to hold me back,” Wilson assured reporters last week, via Machota. “Just going to work on that this offseason and come back to Oxnard ready to go.”
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Kearse Speaks on Role
Wilson ended the 2020 campaign atop the Cowboys’ depth chart, a competent replacement for incompetent veteran Darian Thompson. He’s tentatively penciled in as the bookend to Damontae Kazee, the former Falcons standout who arrived in free agency, reuniting with former Atlanta HC and new Cowboys DC Dan Quinn.
Kearse, who also signed a free-agent deal back in March, is the wildcard among this group. The nephew of ex-NFL great Jevon Kearse, Jayron entered the league as a 2016 seventh-round choice by the Minnesota Vikings. Kearse would appear in 47 games for the Vikings, starting two, across the 2016-18 campaigns. He spent much of last season with the Detroit Lions, posting 59 tackles, two pass breakups, and one forced fumble before being waived on Dec. 28.
Kearse is expected to compete for a sub-package role on defense while pulling double duty for special teams boss John Fassel. The 6-foot-4, 215-pound defender was mixed-and-matched with the first-stringers in Wilson’s absence, flashing the coverage ability that landed him in the Lone Star State.
“Really some of the same things I’ve done in Minnesota, playing the nickel position and when we get into bigger personnels, having a role to play the dime position where I’m covering tight ends and things like that,” Kearse said earlier this month, via the official team website. “For me, that was something I was familiar with and something I excelled in, in that particular role.”
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Brown Opens Competition for Starting CB Job
Elsewhere in the Cowboys’ secondary, vet cornerback Anthony Brown has welcomed all challengers — namely second-round rookie Kelvin Joseph and third-rounder Nahshon Wright — to battle for the starting boundary vacancy opposite rising stud Trevon Diggs.
“There’s always competition,” Brown told reporters last week, via WFAA.com. “It’s the NFL. There’s always going to be competition.”
He added: “We lost Chido, so we got to replace him and somebody got to come in. So, there’s always going to be competition and you got to do your part and don’t worry about that. Like I said, make everybody better around you. At the end of the day, if we win, everybody wins.”
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL