You never know when your opportunity is going to present itself.
Wide receiver Vince Mayle is getting his with an injury to reserve tight end Geoff Swaim. The Dallas Cowboys do not feel that Rico Gathers, the former Baylor basketball standout who is converting to tight end, is ready.
Neither is James Hanna, who continues to recover from knee surgery.
So the Cowboys are going with two tight ends on their active roster – Jason Witten and Gavin Escobar – and bringing Mayle up to serve as an H-back.
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“I’ve been working hard for this, so I’m glad it’s finally here and can prove that I can come play,” Mayle said.
Mayle doesn’t know what his specific role on the team will be, saying: “I’m still a wide out. Still going to find out.”
For Mayle, it’s been quite a journey to this point. The Washington State product was a fourth-round pick by the Cleveland Browns in 2015, but was among the Browns’ final cuts because of too many dropped passes during training camp.
He landed with the Cowboys and spent most of last season on the practice squad. His only game appearance came against the New England Patriots last season.
“It means a lot [to get called up],” Mayle said. “I worked my way kind of like being drafted and then worked my way from being like an undrafted player. So it means a lot to be able to work my way back up.”
It means a lot financially too. Being activated means Mayle will receive at least three game checks whether he plays or not. That means he should make about $77,000 based on the $435,000 NFL minimum salary.
The Cowboys host Baltimore on Sunday at AT&T Stadium.