Andrew Whitworth denies interest in the Cowboys, and they’d have to acquire him from the Rams anyway

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Andrew Whitworth hasn’t even been retired for six full months, yet there are already talks about his potential return to the field. Only, the talks aren’t about him coming out of retirement to rejoin the Los Angeles Rams. It’s the Dallas Cowboys who are at the center of it all.

After learning that left tackle Tyron Smith tore his hamstring and is expected to miss 3-4 months, one of the first names that came up was Whitworth’s. It would seem to be a natural fit, seeing as Whitworth has stayed in shape and never really ruled out a return to football after retiring in March.

It began with some Twitter banter between Whitworth and Texas-based offensive line trainer Duke Manyweather. Then on Amazon’s preseason broadcast Thursday, Whitworth was asked about answering calls and texts about joining the Cowboys.

Except, Whitworth didn’t say who those calls and texts were from.

Later on Twitter, Whitworth clarified in multiple tweets that he hasn’t heard from anyone in the Cowboys’ building. It was friends, fans and reporters who he was answering calls and texts from.

That’s an important clarification.

Because Whitworth retired with one year left on his contract, the Rams still retain his rights. Therefore, any other team talking to Whitworth would be considered tampering. Any team interested in Whitworth would need to go through the Rams first, requesting permission to have those discussions.

And it’s not as if the Cowboys could simply sign Whitworth to whatever contract they want. The Rams would need to trade Whitworth – or release him from the reserve/retired list – in order for him to join the Cowboys.

This is the same situation that played out with Rob Gronkowski in 2020 when he came out of retirement. The Patriots traded him to the Buccaneers for a fourth-round pick; the Bucs couldn’t just sign him as a free agent.

While the Cowboys should be interested in Whitworth, and it could benefit the Rams if they’re willing to trade a draft pick or player, it doesn’t sound like the former All-Pro is interested in playing for Dallas.

He tweeted Friday morning that he said no when asked if the Cowboys reached out and if he was interested.

Whitworth might just be playing it coy right now, but the Cowboys would be a great situation for him if he does decide to come out of retirement. It would hurt for Rams fans to see him playing somewhere other than Los Angeles, but no one would be mad about seeing No. 77 back on the field in 2022.

Story originally appeared on Rams Wire