After announcing the return of pass rusher Dante Fowler earlier today, the Cowboys announced the re-signing of Fowler’s former teammate and fellow former first-round pick Takkarist McKinley, according to Michael Gehlken of Dallas Morning News. McKinley signed to the Cowboys’ practice squad late last year after getting cut from the Rams.
The 27-year-old has had quite the fall from grace since his rookie and sophomore seasons that saw him tally six and seven sacks, respectively. He followed that up in 2019 with a 13-start season that returned a disappointing 3.5 sacks. After that, trade rumors began to circle as the Falcons declined McKinley’s fifth-year option. This eventually lead to Atlanta waiving their former first-round pick midseason.
McKinley bounced around several times due to initial interest followed by health questions. The Bengals and 49ers both claimed the young pass rusher, waiving him shortly after when he failed his physicals. He finally landed with the Raiders but was put on injured reserve before he could see the field. He would finally see the field again with the Browns who signed him to a one-year deal after the expiration of his rookie contract. His season came to an end early, though, after a torn Achilles tendon.
After failing to find a new team in the offseason, McKinley signed to the Titans’ practice squad before the Rams signed him away from Tennessee and onto their active roster. After four games with the Rams, McKinley was released again, leading him to sign with the Cowboys. The Cowboys will give him a new chance to make the roster this summer after he failed to do so in his ten weeks on their practice squad last year.
Dallas also signed a new long snapper, according to ESPN’s Todd Archer. After the departure of Jake McQuaide to Detroit, the Cowboys have opted to replace him with former Raiders long snapper Trent Sieg. Archer further reports that Sieg’s contract is a one-year, $1.23MM deal including a $152,500 signing bonus and a base salary of $1.08MM, $250,000 of which is guaranteed. He’ll count for $940,000 against the 2023 salary cap, since his deal is a veteran salary benefit contract.