The Cowboys still have interest in acquiring Earl Thomas, who skipped the Seahawks’ mandatory minicamp while seeking a long-term deal. But it will have to be at the right price, something Dallas and Seattle haven’t settled on since beginning talks before the draft.
The Cowboys are thin at free safety since new secondary coach Kris Richard moved Byron Jones to cornerback. Jones started all 16 games at free safety last season.
As it stands now, Xavier Woods is slated to start at free safety.
“I just block it out,” Woods said of talk about Thomas, via Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News. “I’ve learned this is a business at the end of the day. The job is based on yourself. You have to be irreplaceable. It’s all on you.
“I just control what I can control. I’m trying every day to give them a reason not to want anybody else.”
Woods, a sixth-round draft choice in 2017, played 51.5 percent of the defensive snaps last season, mostly at nickel back. He made 41 tackles, six pass breakups and an interception.
“He’s really smart,” Richard said. “That’s the thing that stands out first and foremost about him. He picks stuff up really quick. He takes coaching points really well. He already has an idea how to simplify things in his mind, and it works for him. He’s fast; he’s bright; he’s got ball skills, and he fits the profile.”
Richard coached Thomas in Seattle the past six seasons, and Woods has studied how Richard used Thomas.
“I pick coach Richard’s brain about what Earl thinks,” Woods said. “We used to watch film together, me and coach Richard, and just look and see what Earl brings, what is Earl thinking at this point and time on this play.”