Cowboys Cut Clinton-Dix: What It Says About McCarthy - And Earl Thomas

Mike Fisher

FRISCO - In 2016, Ha-Ha Clinton Dix represented the Green Bay Packers in the Pro Bowl after recording a career-high five interceptions. In spring 2020? He was to represent new Mike McCarthy's idea of a ballhawk as the safety, 27, signed a one-year deal to join the Dallas Cowboys secondary.

And as we approach fall 2020? Ha Ha is - no joke - out of a job.

READ MORE: NFL Cowboys Cutdown Tracker: No Joke: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix Released

Clinton-Dix, who played for the Cowboys coach in Green Bay from 2014-18, got a $2.5 million guarantee to come to Dallas. ... but his release opens up $1.5 mil in cap room.

Still, this is an eye-on-the-face transaction. Clinton-Dix was supposed to be the top candidate to supplant Jeff Heath, who has moved on to the Las Vegas Raiders via NFL Free Agency.

"That’s the No. 1 thing in winning football games,'' new Dallas defensive coordinator Mike Nolan said of his and McCarthy's shared philosophy on that side of the ball. "Getting the ball for your offense.''

Clinton-Dix couldn't beat out journeyman Darian Thompson, and we're not sure he outplayed second-year guy Donovan Wilson or converted rookie Reggie Robinson II, either.

The Clinton-Dix transaction does tell us two things, however. 1) Unlike previous Dallas head coaches (read: Parcells, Bill), McCarthy doesn't favor "McCarthy Guys'' who can't play. And 2) The national-media people, and anybody else around here who kept pitching that Clinton-Dix is superior to Earl Thomas - a name that still resonates here at The Star, believe me - are now proven horribly wrong.

THANKS FOR READING COWBOY MAVEN
Register today for free or log in to access this premium article.
Comments (16)
No. 1-5
jda8600
jda8600

Clinton-Dix may not be the player he was coming out of Bama, but still grades out better than Heath and Woods. McCoy and Clinton-Dix are sensible signings that play 16 games/season.

johnson 34
johnson 34

Ha Ha was so good his first two years and then just went in the tank--He avoided contact on 50% of snaps and was lost in coverage. I thought he was playing thru an injury, but he never got better. I can see the Bears, who make terrible personnel decisions, gambling on Dix-and he was terrible with Chicago, but When McCarthy signed him, I was shocked. Watch film of the last three years, he's been abysmal.. Good for McCarthy for cutting him, but bringing him in the first place doesn't bode well for the McCarthy era in Dallas. This was a reckless and foolish contract.

Michael_Redden
Michael_Redden

Sup with the dig at Parcells? He’s only one of the greatest coaches ever? His tenure with the Cowboys was pretty successful, he did help draft and develop Romo cmon!

felixthegat
felixthegat

There is an on-the-field reason to be wary of. Thomas is old! I get that he WAS a multi-time Pro Bowler and should be a HOFer. But Revis, Bailey, and Polamalu fit that bill as well. Doesn't mean I want them on an NFL roster in 2020. Once defensive backs get over 30, their performance can nosedive. But I agree he's probably got enough left in the tank to sign on the cheap. I'd take a low-cost flyer and bring him in on a tight leash like the Pats did with Antonio Brown last year. If he shows the slightest sign of headcase issues, you cut him.

felixthegat
felixthegat

There is an on-the-field reason to be a bit wary: Thomas is old! I get that he WAS a multi-time Pro Bowler and should be a HOFer. But Revis, Bailey, and Polamalu fit that bill as well. Doesn't mean I want them on an NFL roster in 2020. Once defensive backs get over 30, their performance can nosedive. But I agree he's probably got enough left in the tank to sign on the cheap. I'd take a low-cost flyer and bring him in on a tight leash like the Pats did with Antonio Brown last year. If he shows the slightest sign of headcase issues, you cut him.


News

FEATURED
COMMUNITY