Duke Thomas, Cornerback
The Dallas Cowboys invested heavily into their defensive secondary this offseason. The Cowboys had to. They lost three starters from last season to free agency.
In their place, Dallas signed former Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Nolan Carroll as a free agent and drafted four defensive backs. Colorado’s Chidobe Awuzie, Michigan’s Jourdan Lewis, Florida State’s Marquez White and Louisiana State’s Xavier Woods now makeup the youth revolution in Dallas’ secondary.
Unfortunately, injuries have decimated the Cowboys rookies with Awuzie, Lewis and Woods currently sidelined. Their lack of playing time and experience is a major concern with the start of the regular season only a couple weeks away.
Throw in the fact Carroll could be suspended at anytime following a DUI arrest in late May, and suddenly the Cowboys are dangerously low in defensive backs who can actually play in a game.
But Dallas’ issues in the secondary have open the door for cornerback Duke Thomas to squeeze through. The former Longhorn has been impressive in the preseason, showing a real nose for the ball while recording 12 total tackles in three games. He even had the normally reserved Jason Garrett heaping praise upon him recently.
Thomas, who posted 162 total tackles, 20 pass defends and seven interceptions during his time in Texas, has a real chance of making the Cowboys’ active roster. Especially considering the questions marks the team has on that side of the ball right now. Thomas’ play Saturday night could be the deciding factor.