Former Cowboys DE Randy Gregory Traded to 49ers Before SNF Clash

Randy Gregory

Getty Former Denver Broncos DE Randy Gregory has been traded to the San Francisco 49ers

The Dallas Cowboys are preparing for an important Week 5 game, and that’s taking a major turn with the San Francisco 49ers trading for Randy Gregory. The former Cowboys and Denver Broncos defender has been dealt to the Niners after underwhelming returns, and will have a chance to start over.

The move was a bit of a stunner, as Gregory was initially thought to have been released by the Broncos. NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported the trade on October 6.

“Plot twist! The #Broncos are trading veteran OLB Randy Gregory to the #49ers, per sources. Denver never formally released Gregory, who now gets a fresh start with a contender in San Francisco,” Pelissero wrote on X (formerly known as Twitter.)

Gregory arrives with the 49ers just before the Cowboys head to Levi’s Stadium for a highly-anticipated primetime game. It’s not clear if Gregory will suit up for the 49ers, but he should be in game-ready shape considering he’s played in all four games for the Broncos this season.

Gregory has not yet faced the Cowboys since choosing Denver over Dallas in the 2022 offseason, but he will potentially get his chance on Sunday night.

Cowboys HC Spoke on Gregory’s Availability

Before the “plot twist” of Gregory being traded to the 49ers, Dallas head coach Mike McCarthy spoke on rumors that he could re-join the Cowboys as a free agent. While the Cowboys ball coach did pay Gregory a compliment, he all but shut down any potential rumors by saying he has not heard or considered any free agency move.

“I haven’t been a part of any of those discussions,” McCarthy said according to’s Mike Fisher. “Obviously I thought Randy had a fine, fine season his last year here (in 2021), but I don’t have anything to report on that front.”

Gregory left Dallas on controversial terms after initially accepting a contract offer before post-agreement negotiations led to him choosing to sign with Denver instead. While Gregory did produce at a high level in his final year in Dallas, the nature of the break-up makes a reunion seem unlikely.

Now, the player will face his former team on national television on Sunday.

 Gregory Joins 49ers After Broncos Struggles

There’s no question that Gregory has been through ups and downs during his football career, with off-the-field issues affecting both his arrival to the NFL and his years with the Cowboys. However, the veteran defensive end finally got his first huge NFL contract in 2022 with Denver.

That five-year, $70 million deal initially started with a bang as Gregory opened with two sacks in his first three games with the Broncos. His six sacks with Dallas in 2021 felt like the precursor to an even bigger season, and the former Nebraska Cornhusker looked to be realizing that.

But a knee injury in Week 4 sidelined Gregory, eventually putting him on the injured reserve. He made his return in December, but was then suspended one game for starting a fight in the Broncos’ game against the Los Angeles Rams. The suspension was lifted, but it still was a blemish on his 2022 campaign.

His 2023 season hasn’t been abysmal (1 sack, 1 PD in four games) but he has been outpaced by linebackers like Nik Bonnito. Now, after just nine total appearances for Denver, Gregory is a free agent. The Broncos were stuck paying him $16.1 in guaranteed money whether he was kept on the roster or released, and the AFC West franchise decided to deal him to San Francisco.