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Dallas Cowboys vice president Stephen Jones reiterated one of his favorite lines in a Wednesday press conference.
“We always say player acquisition is 365 days a year,” Jones said. “So, we’re always looking to get better in terms of the personnel that may be out there. If we see an opportunity to improve or add depth to this football team, we’ll certainly do it.”
By Wednesday evening, the Cowboys had.
Dallas agreed to terms on a one-year deal with four-time Pro Bowl defensive end Everson Griffin, two people with knowledge of the deal confirmed to USA TODAY Sports Wednesday night.
After the 2019 season, Griffen opted out of his contract with the Minnesota Vikings, with whom he played 10 years.
He spent nearly five months as a free agent before landing with Dallas. He’ll need three negative COVID-19 tests before he can enter The Star, where players will practice in shells beginning Friday.
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Teams can either evaluate a player by setting up a virtual tryout. They can accept workout videos sent to them by players, agents or other third parties. Teams also can host players for tryouts if they have met COVID-19 testing requirements.
Before trying out or receiving a physical, the player must produce at least two consecutive negative tests within 24 hours of one another after arriving in the team’s city.
Griffen had not visited or done in-person tryouts, a person with knowledge said.
Griffen earned his fourth Pro Bowl berth last season with Minnesota, tallying eight sacks, 41 tackles and 24 quarterback hits in 15 games. He’s played 147 games, amassing 355 tackles, 74.5 sacks and nine forced fumbles.
Griffen joins a defense anchored by left defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence. The Cowboys signed veterans Gerald McCoy and Dontari Poe this spring as interior depth for new defensive coordinator Mike Nolan. They also brought in long-suspended defensive end Aldon Smith, who earned his reinstatement bid in April after last playing in 2015. Defensive lineman Tyrone Crawford is expected to return from hip surgery.
Defensive end Robert Quinn amassed a team-high 11.5 sacks last season before signing a lucrative deal with the Chicago Bears.
“I think personally we really got the job done in the offseason,” Jones said Wednesday. “My opinion, I feel as good about this team as any that we’ve had over the last five or 10 years.”
Contributing: Mike Jones.
Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Jori Epstein on Twitter @JoriEpstein.
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