FRISCO, Texas – It's no surprise to see teams shake things up during the bye week, and the Cowboys are no exception.
After reports surfaced Wednesday morning, the team released veteran cornerback Nolan Carroll, bringing his seven-month tenure to a close in abrupt fashion. Linebacker Justin March-Lillard was signed with the open roster spot.
The Cowboys signed Carroll to a three-year, $10 million contract back in March, after they elected not to re-sign Brandon Carr or Morris Claiborne. That contract had $4 million in guarantees.
It's somewhat surprising to see Carroll leave the team, given that he's one of just two veteran corners on the roster. That said, the writing has been on the wall for the better part of a month.
Carroll had a rough start in the Cowboys' 42-17 loss to Denver back in Week 2, before ultimately exiting with a concussion. He has not appeared in a game since.
During his absence, rookie cornerback Jourdan Lewis has been thrown into the starting lineup. Despite missing all of training camp with a hamstring injury, Lewis has performed admirably.
It raised eyebrows this past Sunday, when – despite practicing fully all last week – Carroll was designated as inactive heading into the Week 5 game against Green Bay. In his place, Lewis and Chidobe Awuzie were activated to play against the Packers.
It will be interesting to see how the front office decides to replace Carroll going forward. Thanks to the pre-season addition of Bené Benwikere, the Cowboys still have five corners on the roster – Orlando Scandrick, Anthony Brown, Lewis, Awuzie and Benwikere.
Having said that, Awuzie is still dealing with a hamstring injury for the time being. The Cowboys will likely use the bye week to determine if they'd like to add another cornerback to the roster or use the open spot elsewhere.