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Donald Hawkins playing with a Texas-sized chip

09/01/2014 3:18 PM

09/01/2014 3:21 PM

When the Dallas Cowboys claimed tackle Donald Hawkins off waivers from the Browns, they ended a whirlwind week for him and put a nice bow on a bad draft class from the University of Texas.

Hawkins signed with the Philadelphia Eagles after going undrafted in the 2014 NFL Draft. -- like every other draft eligible player from Texas for the first time since 1938.

He played in three preseason games with the Eagles before being cut last week and being picked up by the Cincinnati Bengals for the final preseason game.

Hawkins was cut by the Bengals on Saturday and then claimed by the Cowboys on Sunday.

“I’m glad to be here,” Hawkins said. “I’m glad they did sign me to give me an opportunity.

“All I ever wanted was an opportunity. Yes, it’s been a whirlwind week. Going from Philadelphia to Cleveland, my head definitely was spinning, and I was just hoping I could land some where and start my career. I’m praying Dallas is a place I could start my career.”

While Hawkins is only rookie from Texas to land on an NFL roster in 2014 -- cornerback Carrington Byndom is on the Panthers practice squad -- the Cowboys are getting a thankful but motivated player still with a Texas-sized chip on his shoulder.

“It’s all definitely motivation after being one of the guys not being drafted at Texas,” Hawkins said. “I have been playing with a chip on my shoulder since high school, because of not being able to play Division I out of high school and having to go to junior college and making that transition at Texas. And then making the transition to the NFL after being undrafted was definitely a chip. And after being cut twice, it just makes the chip even bigger, play harder and thank God for being in the position I’m in right now.”

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Charean Williams has covered the NFL for 21 seasons. She's a Hall of Fame voter, a past president of the Pro Football Writers of America and a proud Aggie. Follow her on Twitter at @NFLCharean

E-mail: cjwilliams@star-telegram.com

Clarence E. Hill Jr. has been the Dallas Cowboys beat writer since 1997. He's battle tested with one playoff win, six coaches, countless scandals, controversies and unfullfilled expectations. Follow him on Twitter at @clarencehilljr

E-mail: chill@star-telegram.com

Drew Davison joined the Star-Telegram as a correspondent in 2007, primarily covering high schools along with helping out with Rangers, Cowboys and colleges coverage. He became one of the Rangers beat writers in July 2011, and also assists with coverage of Texas Motor Speedway and the Cowboys during the offseason. Davison graduated from the University of Kansas and had internships at The Kansas City Star and MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @drewdavison

E-mail: ddavison@star-telegram.com

Jimmy Burch is the college sports and golf writer/columnist for the Star-Telegram. He also covers the Dallas Cowboys and other Dallas-Fort Worth pro sports. Follow him on Twitter at @Jimmy_Burch

E-mail: jburch@star-telegram.com

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