Bleacher Report thinks Cowboys should sign veteran defender with Dan Quinn ties

This veteran free agent would complete the Cowboys' thin linebacker room.
Feb 5, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn speaks with middle linebacker
Feb 5, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn speaks with middle linebacker / Dan Powers-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys haven't rested on their laurels after a 12-5 season.

Of course, last year marked the 28th (!) consecutive year that the Cowboys failed to advance beyond the Divisional Round, and the hope is running it back with largely the same roster and veteran additions Brandin Cooks and Stephon Gilmore will help Dallas buck that trend and threaten to make the elusive Super Bowl.

With training camp arriving in a month, the Cowboys seem pleased with the state of their roster. There isn't much to sort out as far as starting positions, as most of the camp battles -- sans tight end and possibly the No. 3 corner spot -- will involve filling out the rest of the depth chart.

While Dallas is bullish on their young talent, they'd be smart to continue perusing the free agent market for bargain veterans.

Bleacher Report's Kristopher Knox has a few vets in mind for Dallas, including linebacker Deion Jones, who played his best football under Dan Quinn.

Should the Cowboys reunite Dan Quinn with LB Deion Jones?

It's unlikely that Dallas is actively searching for linebacker reinforcements, but if Jones is still available come training camp (he hasn't taken a free agent visit since the Giants hosted him in April), it might not be a bad idea to take a flier on the vet linebacker.

A former centerpiece of Quinn's Falcons defenses from 2016-20, Jones was traded from Atlanta to Cleveland last October. He started the year on injured reserve recovering from offseason shoulder injury but returned to play 11 games with five starts.

He finished the year with 44 tackles, six tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, an interception, three passes defended and a forced fumble.

It's been a while since Jones finished third in Defensive Rookie of the Year voting in 2016 and last made a Pro Bowl in 2017, but it stands to reason that reuniting with Quinn would help Jones rediscover a version of that form.

Jones and Quinn were together for five years, so odds are he understands what the defensive coordinator expects from his linebackers. At the end of the day, Jones has been a productive player throughout his career and the Cowboys could use an established presence at linebacker behind Leighton Vander Esch.

Between Damone Clark, DeMarvion Overshown and Jabril Cox, there's little experience in the linebacker room aside from Vander Esch. Not to mention injuries have limited Vander Esch to two full seasons in five years.

Imagine the sheer panic that would ensue if Vander Esch went down with another injury. Having Jones as insurance would help lessen the blow in that scenario. And if Vander Esch remains upright, Jones' presence would help Dallas ease in Overshown and put less on Clark's plate as a second-year player.

There aren't many positions Dallas should look to upgrade as we get closer to training camp. Linebacker is undoubtedly one of them and Jones checks a number of boxes as a former standout under Quinn.

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