Tuesday afternoon, ESPN Dallas writer Calvin Watkins reported that the Dallas Cowboys are interested in free agent Amobi Okoye in the wake of a season ending injury to Tyrone Crawford and losing Anthony Spencer for two-to-four weeks because of knee surgery.
For the Cowboys right now, Okoye would be an ideal fit.
Okoye has been in the NFL for six seasons — this upcoming year being his seventh — but is only 26, coming into the league at the age of 19 out of Louisville. He spent his first four seasons with the Texans Houston –– recording a career high 5.5 sacks in his rookie year — and the last two with the Chicago Bears.
At 6-foot-2 and 295 pounds, Okoye has typical size for a three-technique tackle, and spent his last two years playing under defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli, who now holds that same position in Dallas.
The other advantage for the Cowboys signing Okoye over a guy like John Abraham, for example, is the price. Last season, the base salary for Okoye was $700,000. In contrast, Abraham was due to make $5.75 million in Atlanta this upcoming season — per USA Today — before being released by the team in March along with running back Michael Turner and cornerback Dunta Robinson, moves that rid of the team of three big veteran contracts.
If Dallas were to pursue Abraham, it is safe to say that he would long for a deal in the range of what he was set to earn this season in Atlanta. The Cowboys could theoretically give him that, but the $10 million they have in cap space is most likely going to be used toward re-signing middle linebacker Sean Lee.
Okoye is not as high profile a name, but would not come as expensive, and has a history with Marinelli and a familiarity with the new defensive scheme.
If the team so desires, he would be a good fit for the Cowboys.