4 most important Cowboys returning for the 2022 season

Dalton Schultz, Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Dalton Schultz, Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /
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Jayron Kearse, Cowboys
Jayron Kearse, Dallas Cowboys (Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports) /

3. Jayron Kearse, Safety

Jayron Kearse is actually the only player on the list who was a traditional free agent re-sign for the Cowboys. Kearse is the perfect example of when the Jerry Jones tactic of shopping in the bargain bin actually goes well. Last year, there was little excitement when the Cowboys signed Kearse to a one-year, $1.1 million deal in free agency. In his four prior years in the NFL, he’d started in a mere 12 games, had only one total interception, and his highest amount of total tackles in a season was 59.

In 2021, the safety started in 15 games, had two interceptions, and 101 total tackles. Safety has long been a position the Cowboys have ignored and avoided spending big money on. That’s why it’s no surprise that Dallas refused to make an offer for free agent Tyrann Mathieu this offseason. Bringing back Kearse was one of the best in-house free agent signings the team made this offseason. So many deals given out by the Joneses were one-year, depth signings that caused little excitement.

While Kearse isn’t a top safety in the league, he certainly earned himself the two-year, $10 million contract he signed. Plus, if Kearse has a similar season to the one he did last year, you could argue the Cowboys got him for a bargain.

Kearse joins Malik Hooker as the two safeties the Cowboys have re-signed in free agency so far.