Former defensive tackle David Irving has applied for reinstatement into the NFL and the Dallas Cowboys don’t appear to be ruling out a possible return.
Could I interest anyone in a six-foot-seven 290-pound defensive tackle who, when motivated, created havoc in the interior of the defensive line? If you are the Dallas Cowboys, someone with that background could definitely be a great addition.
Apparently, with the NFL and NFLPA’s ongoing CBA talks, the rumored relaxed stance on marijuana has given David Irving a chance to do what he enjoys and play football. Before we get into that let’s ask the question: Would Irving fit with the Cowboys?
The Cowboys are going to use different fronts on defense which means versatile players are going to be a commodity for them. Irving was a disruptive defender that excelled when employed as a three-technique. This position favored the defender by placing him in a one on one situation.
Although Irving sometimes tended to get a bit too upright when used as an occupying one-technique, he showed the ability to anchor down and keep the double team from moving him out of his spot. This is quite common among taller defensive lineman.
Irving on the field was good when outside distractions didn’t interfere. Yes, he only has 12.5 career sacks but that is not the only stat that you should use when debating worth. He had 30 quarterback hits and five forced fumbles in his tenure while only averaging nine games a season.
Availability is going to be an issue he needs to overcome. From 2015 through 2018, Irving only played in 37 games. He was involved in a custody dispute with his then-girlfriend which limited him to two games in 2018 and obviously bothered his production on the field.
Another reason for his missing time was due to substance-related suspensions. Irving was suspended four games to start the 2017 and 2018 seasons and was also suspended indefinitely by the league right before he was due to become an unrestricted free agent in March of 2019.
This leads us to our current debate. If you were the Dallas Cowboys, would you bring David Irving back if the NFL eases their stance on its marijuana policy? According to an unnamed team source, the answer is a surprising maybe.
A team source told 105.3 The Fan and SI.com that the Cowboys are taking a wait-and-see approach when it comes to Irving. That’s very interesting especially when you take into account his unceremonious departure.
I understand that there will be football-related questions on his quest to return. His current weight and conditioning would be at the forefront with injury concerns not lingering behind. This can be sorted out once the NFL clears its CBA hurdle and his reinstatement is awarded.
I for one am all for it if David Irving is serious about the commitment. I just hope this is not a silly attempt to generate headlines for things other than football. If Irving wants to come back and terrorize quarterbacks for a living, count me in.