The Dallas Cowboys cut sixth-round pick Darius Jackson on Tuesday to clear a roster spot for running back Darren McFadden.
Jackson has been inactive on game days for the Cowboys this season, although the organization liked him enough coming out of Eastern Michigan to use a late-round pick on him.
Jackson could rejoin the Cowboys as a practice squad player if he clears waivers.
The move makes sense given that the team had to make one for McFadden’s spot.
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McFadden is healthy and ready to return in a complementary role after being sidelined since undergoing surgery on his right elbow in the offseason.
Owner Jerry Jones addressed McFadden’s role on 105.3 The Fan on Tuesday. McFadden certainly won’t get many, if any, touches with standout rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott leading the league with 1,392 yards and 12 touchdowns. But Jones alluded to the fact that McFadden could become a special teams asset down the stretch.
“I don’t know that with Zeke getting the carries that he’s getting that you’ll see rotation,” Jones said. “[McFadden] certainly can be a receiver. He certainly gives you the edge. He arguably has the burst that the others probably wish they had in terms of outside. And of course he was as good of a special teams player as college has seen. And he’s a huge physical player out there, makes tremendous blocks. Made the key block for the All-American Felix Jones who was an All-American returner for two years.
“That was McFadden’s block that would just be absolutely a highlight reel for whichever game he played in in college. So, he really brings the wood as a special teams player as well. He’s a leader on the team. Anybody you talk to will tell you about what a pro he is and what candidly using the term, underline it, what a man he is.”
McFadden had the fourth-most rushing yards (1,089) in the NFL a season ago and was named the Cowboys’ offensive MVP.
But McFadden knew a reduced role would be headed his way when he spoke with the Star-Telegram last week.
“Zeke has been running the ball real good, doing a heck of a job and that’s some chemistry you don’t want to mess up,” McFadden said. “So whatever role they decide to put me in, I’m all for it.”