Cowboys To Release Ha Ha Clinton-Dix

The Cowboys are moving on from Ha Ha Clinton-Dix quickly. After signing the veteran safety to a one-year deal in March, Dallas will release him, Todd Archer of tweets.

Clinton-Dix signed for a guaranteed $2.5MM, so this move will tag the Cowboys with a bit of dead money. It will, however, free up $1.75MM in cap savings. While this marks the first release of Clinton-Dix’s career, the former first-round pick may well move to a fifth team before what would be his seventh NFL season.

Expected to be a starter alongside Xavier Woods, Clinton-Dix evidently did not justify the modest salary commitment. He signed a one-year deal with the Bears last year and started 16 games for their No. 4-ranked scoring defense. Now. Clinton-Dix joins Gerald McCoy as 2020 Cowboy signees jettisoned before the season’s outset.

While this could accelerate the Earl Thomas-to-Dallas hype, the Cowboys are said to be split on the All-Pro safety. Mike McCarthy, in particular, was not believed to be on board — as of late last month — with bringing in Thomas. But Jerry Jones has not ruled it out, and the owner/personnel czar certainly would have the final say. Indeed,’s Jane Slater tweets this does not necessarily mean a Thomas signing is imminent.

The Cowboys have used Woods and Jeff Heath as their safety starters over the past two years, doing so amid constant rumors about upgrades to the position. Their most notable effort came when they offered a second-round pick for Thomas in 2018. After Heath’s defection to Las Vegas, Dallas signed Clinton-Dix. The Cowboys have former Giants draftee Darian Thompson, 2019 sixth-round pick Donovan Wilson and rookie UDFA hopeful Luther Kirk in their safety stable currently.

A former Packers draftee, Clinton-Dix has started 90 career games and made the Pro Bowl in 2016. Pro Football Focus graded him as its No. 19 overall safety last season. Green Bay traded Clinton-Dix to Washington at the 2018 deadline, and he signed with Chicago the following March. He will likely head to another city for work soon.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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23 comments on “Cowboys To Release Ha Ha Clinton-Dix

  1. bens04ter

    if you have been following the cowboys training camp, this is no surprise. he didnt even take snaps with the 1st team defense and has not separated himself from anyone else including rookies and converted safeties. disappointing in one regard but also frees up a little more cap space….this should bring more thomas to Dallas daily rumors

    • of9376

      Yeah the reports were that he looked really bad. It’s surprising considering he has been productive in his career.

  2. Perksy

    Haha Clinton Dix and Buster Screen. First time I heard those names I thought dix was being made fun of, and I thought someone busted up a screen play.

    • bravesfan88

      It greatly depends on how he is used..Fangio and Chuck Pagono are two of the best at putting guys in the best position to succeed…

      Its bo surprise that the Bears have had such solid defenses the past few years with two of the best DCs in the game..

    • Bryzzo4417!

      Um, he was the no. 19 Safety in the NFL as a Bear. So like, he was good with them, dude.

      • Tankittothelimit

        So, like, now he’s looking for his fifth team in under 2 years.

        So good.

      • acryingfish

        and now he’s not, it happens. football is cruel one day you got it and the next you don’t.

        cowboys thought he didn’t have it / not enough to warrant the cost over his replacements

  3. wagner13

    The Cowboys might need to part with their draft capital and find someone on the open market, unless they’re confident in Thompson as a starter next to Woods. Pursuing some competition, such as Geathers or Addae, makes sense as well.

    Otherwise, the only other option would be to bite the bullet and sign Thomas. However, with the hiring if McCarthy, it seems Dallas is attempting to revamp their team culture. Thus, it might be more sensible to just stay flexible, try a variety of different candidates, and hope something sticks.

    In other news, what on earth happened to Clinton-Dix? Did he stay locked up in his house eating Fritos all offseason? I can’t be the only one shocked by such a precipitous decline in so short a time frame

    • Ak185

      I don’t see any other justification for cutting Dix than to sign Thomas. For a such a small amount of cap savings, you’d think that Dallas would hold on to him for depth, if nothing else. Even if a guy looked bad in camp, that small amount of savings plus the dead money and Dix’s experience (experience as a decent quality starter, at that) would make you think that he’d have some kind of value.

      Only positive that I can see is that you now an opening for another player that you might consider better. I really don’t any other option in free agency there other than Thomas.

  4. bradthebluefish

    Considering that the Patriots entire defense chickened out of the season, Clinton-Dix could head for New England.

    • wagner13

      I highly doubt it. Safety really isn’t a concern for that defense. McCourty and Phillips is an awesome duo, while the rookie Kyle Dugger can be expected to contribute as well. Chung was declining with age anyway, so his absence won’t be too significant. A wiser investment of cap room would be on a linebacker to replace Hightower

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