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Jones: Safety depth alleviates thin linebacker room


FRISCO, Texas — What was an already thin linebacker room in terms of depth took a massive hit with rookie linebacker DeMarvion Overshown going down with a torn ACL in the Cowboys' second preseason game against Seattle over the weekend.

Although the injury forces further struggle in terms of depth at linebacker, Dallas Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones told reporters on Tuesday that he's encouraged by the plan and strategy being worked out by defensive coordinator Dan Quinn.

"Dan [Quinn] has a good plan for how he's going to handle losing Overshown," Jones said.

While the possibility of making a trade at linebacker or any other position is always on the table if the right opportunity comes along, Jones feels that a move that big isn't necessarily the only option to alleviate the injury to Overshown.

"I think we have the answers on this team," he said. "I've always told you that we're always open. If the right situation came along that we feel like would make our team better, then we'd look at it. We also feel very comfortable with the players we have on this team."

One of the key aspects of Dan Quinn's defenses throughout his career has been having safeties that have positional flex in the second level, and that extends to guys like Jayron Kearse and Markquese Bell on the current roster. With a player like Juanyeh Thomas making a big leap in training camp this month, it allows for more flexibility across the board to eliminate any depth problems.

"We have safeties who can play linebacker, that's the way Dan designs this defense," Jones said. "I just feel like, you got a guy like Juanyeh [Thomas] out there playing at a high level in both preseason games and practices. He's certainly made his way into the picture of adding more depth at safety. Then, we have a lot of safeties that can do a lot of things that Overshown can do."

A spotlight will be shined on the second level during Dallas' preseason finale on Saturday night against the Las Vegas Raiders as Dan Quinn toys with what his new look will be with the second unit with Overshown out of the 2023 picture.

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