Cowboys make trade with Chiefs for linebacker

Posted Sunday, Sep. 01, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
Season opener Giants at Cowboys, 7:30 p.m. Sept. 8, KXAS/Ch. 5

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A whirlwind day of cuts and roster moves by the Dallas Cowboys to get to the 53-man roster limit was capped by a trade Saturday night with the Kansas City Chiefs for linebacker Edgar Jones.

A source with the Cowboys confirmed that Dallas sent a 2014 sixth-round pick to Kansas City for Jones and a seventh-round pick in 2014.

Jones, 28, is a special teams veteran who spent his first five seasons with the Baltimore Ravens. They signed him as an undrafted free agent out of Southeast Missouri State in 2007.

He was a pass rusher in college but also played tight end and linebacker with the Ravens.

Jones, 6-foot-3 and 263 pounds, will give Dallas depth at linebacker heading into the season opener against the New York Giants on Sept. 8.

The roster, however, may not be finalized, even after the Cowboys made 21 cuts and placed safety Matt Johnson and guard Nate Livings on injured reserve.

Look for the Cowboys to make more changes via the waiver wire or possible trades as soon as Sunday.

The Cowboys will likely be in the market for upgrades at cornerback, offensive line and defensive line.

Notable on Saturday, in addition to the trade for Jones, were the decisions with Johnson and Livings.

Livings underwent arthroscopic knee surgery on Aug. 2 and has not practiced since. It is his third career surgery on his right knee, the second since last season.

The Cowboys signed Livings to a five-year, $18.7 million contract last season with $6.2 million guaranteed. His $1.7 million salary for 2013 was guaranteed this season even if failed to make the roster.

Livings started all 16 games last season. He had two penalties, including one hold, and allowed five sacks, according to STATS, prompting the Cowboys to seek a replacement.

Second-year guard Ron Leary replaced Livings in the starting lineup during training camp but underwent knee surgery Aug. 16 and is questionable for the Giants game.

The Cowboys have only nine offensive lineman on the roster. Darrion Weems would be the backup tackle if the Cowboys start Jermey Parnell at right tackle and Doug Free at right guard.

Johnson, a fourth-round pick in 2012, has been sidelined since the preseason opener with a stress reaction in his foot. A month later, Johnson is still no closer to returning, so the Cowboys put him on injured reserve, sidelining him for the season.

Johnson didn’t play at all as a rookie because of injuries.

The Cowboys also forced backup safety Danny McCray to take a pay cut to remain with the team.

McCray, one of the Cowboys’ top special teams players, signed a restricted free agent tender of $1.323 million in the off-season. He has reduced his salary to roughly $700,000.

The Cowboys kept six safeties on the roster, compared to just four cornerbacks, as they surprisingly cut veteran Sterling Moore on Saturday. Only rookie fourth-pick B.W. Webb remains behind Morris Claiborne, Brandon Carr and Orlando Scandrick.

Undrafted rookie Jeff Heath, however, came from nowhere to make the roster at safety.

The Cowboys, who do not have a fullback, kept five tight ends with Dante Rosario and Andre Smith joining Jason Witten, James Hanna and second-round pick Gavin Escobar.

Quarterback Alex Tanney was waived as expected, leaving the Cowboys with only Tony Romo and Kyle Orton for a second consecutive season. Tanney could be re-signed to the practice squad if he clears waivers.

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