Not long after signing a Cowboys deal, Takkarist McKinley is once again in need of a new home. The Cowboys announced on Friday that they have released the journeyman edge rusher.
McKinley finished the 2022 season on Dallas’ practice squad, and he inked a contract with the team in March. Given the team’s depth on the edge, the 27-year-old faced a steep road to a 53-man roster spot, but the Cowboys made another move at the position earlier this week. The addition of Ben Banogu has resulted in McKinley being let go.
The latter began his career with the Falcons in 2017, and he faced high expectations as a first-round pick. After four seasons in Atlanta (during which he recorded 17.5 sacks in 49 games), however, he has bounced around the league for several years. McKinley briefly found himself with the Bengals, 49ers and Raiders before seeing time with the Browns in 2021.
The UCLA product logged a healthy 43% snap share in Cleveland, and he recorded 2.5 sacks in 11 contests. A torn Achilles ended his campaign that year, though, and sparked another round of deals sending him on and off active rosters and practice squads. McKinley was with the Rams to begin 2022, making four appearances in a very limited capacity before winding up in Dallas.
He will now aim to find a new opportunity deep into free agency, although more accomplished edge rushers like Markus Golden, Leonard Floyd and Frank Clark have not landed deals of their own until very recently. Amidst a group of other veterans still on the market, McKinley may have a lengthy wait on the open market as he searches for an opportunity which could provide some much-needed career stability.