The Atlanta Falcons are in a tough spot with marquee defensive tackle Grady Jarrett. They claim to ‘love’ him – this comes from team owner Arthur Blank and head coach Arthur Smith – but they hint at the recognition that he is an expensive piece in a rebuild.
Enter the Dallas Cowboys and defensive coordinator Dan Quinn.
Jarrett still has one season left on his four-year, $68 million contract and is slated for $16.5 million in salary in 2022. For Dallas, those are… well, hurdles. It’s a bonus for a player who has made the Pro Bowl twice and who is only 28 years old. And part of a trade would surely include a new contract.
Can the Cowboys get the Falcons to consider footing part of the bill? Can Quinn do what he did inside The Star with other guys who played for him in Atlanta – Keanu Neal and Damontae Kazee (for a year in 2021) and now Dante Fowler are all becoming Cowboys?
We know the way the Cowboys lean here. Defensive tackles on the list are just-signed Carlos Watkins (at least a vet) and a collection of kids: Neville Gallimore, Osa Odighizuwa, Trysten Hill and Quinton Bohanna.
We bet the Falcons would be willing to be sellers here, and for something far less than an early-round NFL Draft pick. But we can understand why the Cowboys don’t want to pay for a guy who made 17 appearances last year but only had one sack. He received a poor rating of 67.8 from Pro Football Focus after hitting 80.2 and 90.1 in the previous two years.
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Sacks aren’t everything, but the 6-foot-1, 305-pound Jarrett, a former fifth-round pick, is more of a plugger. He had 7.5 bags in one season a few years ago, but harvests three or four bags annually.
Is it worth a hefty price tag, especially if Jarrett’s presence frees up guys like Micah Parsons, DeMarcus Lawrence, Fowler and Dorance Armstrong to go to QB?
Quinn has a commitment to the Cowboys. “I have unfinished business here,” Quinn told CowboysSI.com in an exclusive interview. the 11th of March. “We have the right people in place to accomplish the things everyone in this building is working to accomplish. We are doing it right now. We’re doing it today – getting closer to a goal.
Grady Jarrett is almost certainly DQ’s idea of ”good people.” But unless the Falcons want to pay the check on this one, he’s probably not the Cowboys’ idea of the “right price.”
In the meantime, Jarrett is definitely the Arthurs’ idea of ”good people.” But is this the idea of ”the future of the Falcons”? The answer to this question is looming.