FRISCO, Texas — With the potential of seeing Damien Wilson disciplined for a July 4 arrest, Jaylon Smith working back from a serious knee injury and Mark Nzeocha rehabbing from knee surgery, the Dallas Cowboys have agreed to a deal with veteran linebacker Justin Durant.
Durant played in 13 games last season for the Cowboys after he was signed just before the start of training camp. The coaches credited him with 54 tackles to go along with 1 sack, 1 tackle for loss, 6 quarterback pressures and 4 pass deflections, playing mostly in the defense’s sub packages. He missed one game with a hamstring injury and the final two games of the regular season with an elbow strain.
To make room for Durant on the roster, cornerback Jeremiah McKinnon, who spent part of last year on the practice squad, was released.
Wilson, who played in every game last year, starting six, was arrested on two counts of assault with a deadly weapon on July 4. The Cowboys have not commented on Wilson’s status because they are continuing their own look into the incident.
The Cowboys are optimistic about Smith’s recovery from a serious knee injury that included nerve damage and kept him out last season, but they will bring him along slowly in camp, considering he has not played in a game since January 2016.
The Cowboys are likely to bring Durant along slowly as well since he did not have the benefit of an offseason program. A year ago, they had him work on his conditioning to the side before he was allowed to fully practice.