The Dallas Cowboys defensive line has been hurting since the first day of training camp in Oxnard, California. That first day, the Cowboys lost Tyrone Crawford with a torn Achilles. Backups Ike Igbinosun went down with an ankle injury while Cameron Sheffield pulled his groin. With all of the injuries going on, Stephen Jones’ comment “Crawford’s replacement is already on the roster,” isn’t a reality with all of the injuries mounting up.
Eric Bakhtiari (6-foot-3, 250 lbs) is a 5-year veteran who has seen action with six different teams, most recently with the San Francisco. He spent time with the San Diego Chargers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tennessee Titans, Miami Dolphins, and Kansas City Chiefs. He was first signed by the Chargers in 2008 although he didn’t see his first action until 2009 when he was with the Titans. A native Californian, he played college football at San Diego and Burlingame High School.
Toby Jackson (6-foot-5, 257 lbs) is a rookie free agent who played football for the University of Central Florida (UCF) Knights and spent some time at Navarro College in Corsicana, Texas. A four star player, he played in nine games with two starts at defensive end. He recorded 14 tackles with 11 solo, 3 of those were for a loss plus he had a blocked punt.
Defensive tackle Bobby Skinner rounds out the defensive players signed. Skinner (6-foot-3, 298 lbs) was most recently with the New York Giants who signed him as a rookie free agent out of Montclair State. Originally from Staten Island, NY he had 28 tackles, 20 solo and 6.5 sacks.
The Cowboys also brought in an offensive lineman, that being Rokevious Watkins (6-foot-4, 328 lbs). He was briefly with the St. Louis Rams but was released for being overweight. Watkins played his college football with South Carolina. Watkins played one game as a rookie against the Detroit Lions before being put on injured reserve for a severely sprained ankle. Watkins was new to the position of guard as he played offensive tackle in college. During the off-season in May, he was given a one game suspension due to a violation of the league’s substance abuse policy. Essentially meaning, he will not be a season opener starter.
As you can see, the pickins’ are getting slim from the selection of players to choose from in free agency, the best out of this bunch is Skinner who has the stats to back up his signing with the Cowboys. Watkins has the size but moving from tackle to guard is probably still going to be a learning experience for him with the very limited amount of playing time he has had. Of course, the suspension doesn’t help any I don’t care if it just one game. For many of these free agents, one game is all they get. Either way, they are just basically training camp fodder and may only see a handful of plays in the preseason. Once the injuries start to settle down and players able to come back, they will get their outright release.