The Cowboys took a chance on linebacker Rolando McClain in hopes that a player who hasn’t played in the NFL since 2012 will be able to help them replace Sean lee in the middle of their defense.
After so much time off, McClain has some rust that needs to be knocked off before he can hit the field for a game. McClain didn’t play last week and probably won’t play this week, but Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says that they’ve seen a lot to like about McClain after throwing him into the practice mix right away.
“Now, he hasn’t played football in a year and a half, so those legs, ankles and other areas just take some acclimation. That’s what you’re seeing. We’re trying to, under the real supervision of our trainers, we’re trying to ease him into this thing,” Jones said on KRLD, via the Dallas Morning News. “He’s actually had some days were he had leg cramps, so he’s had to work back in. But he’s really impressive. He’s a different cat out there. He’s got the right attitude. I hope his improvement progresses so that we can get him into some games, possibly by the last two we might see him on the field against a couple of these teams.”
Coach Jason Garrett added that he’s “seen a lot of good things” from McClain, while adding that he’s been dealing with things on and off the field that have limited him a bit since the start of camp. McClain’s ability to handle those and play at a high enough level for NFL action are in doubt, but the Cowboys’ overall situation on defense leaves them with little choice but rolling the dice and hoping the result is a positive one.