Cowboys Urged to Sign Eagles’ Former 29-Year-Old Starter

Zack Cunningham

Getty The Cowboys could be an ideal landing spot for LB Zach Cunningham.

The Dallas Cowboys could use a former Philadelphia Eagles starter on their roster.

As suggested by Bleacher Report’s Matt Holder, the Cowboys should consider signing former Eagles linebacker Zach Cunningham. Holder’s argument for why Dallas should sign Cunningham is simple — the Cowboys weren’t very good defending the run last season and Leighton Vander Esch is now retired.

“It was well-documented that the Cowboys’ defense struggled to stop the run once Leighton Vander Esch went down last season,” writes Holder. “That combined with Vander Esch’s history of neck injuries, led to him retiring in the offseason.”

Why the Cowboys Should Consider Zach Cunningham

The Cowboys ranked 16th when it comes to defending the run last season. While Dallas has since signed veteran Eric Kendricks to fill Vander Esch’s void, the Cowboys could still potentially use another established veteran on the roster. Rookie Marist Liufau projects as the other starting linebacker, while second-year man Damone Clark is the other starter. In other words, two of the Cowboys’ three starters at linebacker are new.

Cunningham started 10 of his 13 appearances for Philadelphia last season and racked up 85 tackles, the third-highest total on the team. Holder argues that Cunningham would be a “good option” next to Kendricks.

“Meanwhile, Cunningham is still available and has a history of being a quality run-stopper,” writes Holder. “Specifically in 2023, he recorded a 70.7 run-defense grade from Pro Football Focus and racked up 85 total tackles in 13 games. The 29-year-old would be a good option next to free-agent signing Eric Kendricks on the second level of the defense.”

The 29-year-old Cunningham actually didn’t sign with the Eagles until during training camp prior to last season. He — along with fellow veteran linebacker Myles Jack — were signed to boost Philadelphia’s weak depth at linebacker after they lost T.J. Edwards and Kyzir White in free agency.

A similar scenario could pan out this season if the Cowboys feel they’re not strong enough at linebacker entering the season. The Cowboys’ primary backup linebackers — Buddy Johnson, Markquese Bell and DeMarion Overshown — have a combined eight starts among them.

Cunningham actually once led the NFL in tackles (164) in 2020. Over the course of his seven-year career, Cunningham holds career totals of 705 tackles, 23 pass deflections, four fumble recoveries and 6.5 sacks in 95 games and 86 starts with the Eagles, Houston Texans and Tennessee Titans.

Trey Lance More Confident Than Ever Entering Second Season With Cowboys

As Trey Lance prepares to enter his second season in Dallas, he’s more confident than ever before.

The former No. 3 overall draft pick will enter his first full training camp with the Cowboys after being acquired towards the end of last year’s preseason in a trade with the San Francisco 49ers. Lance will battle with longtime backup Cooper Rush for the No. 2 spot behind starter Dak Prescott.

Via Nick Harris of the Cowboys’ official website:

“[My confidence] is much higher than it was when I got into the NFL, for sure,” Lance said. “I kind of didn’t know what to expect. I think that’s probably most rookies, if not all of them at one point or another throughout that first year. I feel great about where I’m at. Continuing to get better, continuing to learn and continuing to be a better quarterback.”

Lance didn’t take a single snap last season with the Cowboys as the No. 3 quarterback. However, the team acquired him for a reason — they believe that he can contribute to the team’s success.

If he can beat out Rush — who has served as Prescott’s primary backup over the last few years — Lance would be the next man up if Prescott suffers an injury.

Read More