Training Camp | 2021

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Cowboys Sign Malik Hooker; OT Moved To IR

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OXNARD, Calif. – Malik Hooker is officially a Cowboy.

The Cowboys signed Hooker on Tuesday morning following a scheduled workout here in Oxnard. The veteran safety first had to complete the NFL's required five-day COVID-19 protocol before his visit.

Now he'll add experience and competition to a group with several new faces on this year's training camp roster.

Hooker, the 15th overall draft pick in 2017, was a productive starter for the Colts his first three seasons, posting 124 tackles, seven interceptions, 11 pass breakups and two fumble recoveries. A torn Achilles' tendon ended his 2020 season after only two games, however, and the Colts didn't re-sign him once his rookie contract ended.

"I think it's clearly an opportunity to add another excellent player," Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy said. "We had a chance to bring him in and he's completed his rehab. I think anytime you have a chance to just continue to build the competition on your roster, if it works out for both sides, you definitely have to take advantage of that."

To make room for Hooker on the 90-man training camp roster, the Cowboys placed offensive tackle Mitch Hyatt on the Reserve/Injured list. Hyatt is working back from a knee injury.

Hooker is wearing No. 28 at Tuesday's practice.

The Cowboys visited with him in March, but a deal did not materialize. Instead, the club signed Damontae Kazee, the former Falcons safety who played four seasons for Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn in Atlanta.

Kazee is also returning from a 2020 Achilles tear and has told reporters in camp that he feels "110%."

Rotations and roles are yet to be determined, but the safety spots will have a different look this year. Former starter Xavier Woods signed with the Vikings in the spring. Cowboys third-year safety Donovan Wilson emerged as a productive starter last season, and the Cowboys also signed veteran Jayron Kearse in the offseason, along with Kazee. Veteran addition Keanu Neal, a former Pro Bowl safety in Atlanta, is currently working at linebacker.

As the Cowboys start their second week of camp practice, Hooker will add more depth and playmaking ability to the group.

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