Cowboys re-sign safety Donovan Wilson to 3-year deal

The Dallas Cowboys have made their first signing of the free agency period. Technically, they’ve already agreed to keep running back Tony Pollard and right tackle Terence Steele; but those are respectively tenders of the franchise tag and restricted-free-agent variety. Now, they’ve actually signed a player who had a chance to go elsewhere.

After losing guard Connor McGovern to the Buffalo Bills and LB Luke Gifford to the Tennessee Titans, Dallas has kept safety Donovan Wilson in house. The deal, three-years for up to $24 million includes two years of guaranteed money at just $13.5 million. The hard-hitting Wilson has always been a fan favorite and in 2022 developed into one of the league’s best box safeties. Dallas has struggled to develop safeties in the last decade plus, so it means a lot that they kept Wilson after he reached the level of Pro Bowl consideration.

The former sixth-round pick from Texas A&M started all 17 games last season for Dallas, notching an interception, forcing two fumbles and tallying five sacks. He had 101 combined tackles last season, one shy of his total from his first three years in the league combined.

He had seven tackles behind the line of scrimmage and registered nine QB hits.

Wilson is an enforcer, capable of intimidating offensive players in a league where that is becoming a rare quality. He’s capable of blitzing as well, leading the NFL in pressures from the safety position with 14 in 2022.

The Cowboys often employ three-safety looks under defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, and keeping Wilson allows them another year for him to work with Jayron Kearse and Malik Hooker, who both signed two-year extensions last offseason.

Dallas has a bunch of talent in the pipeline in Israel Mukuamu and Markquese Bell along with Juanyeh Thomas and Tyler Coyle.

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Story originally appeared on Cowboys Wire