The Dallas Cowboys have been very active during this NFL trade deadline period.
This week, the Cowboys traded four-time Pro Bowl defensive end Everson Griffen to the Detroit Lions for a draft pick, then released two-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle Dontari Poe. Needing depth on the defensive line, on Friday the Cowboys acquired defensive tackle Eli Ankou from the Houston Texans.
The finalized deal has the Houston Texans receiving a seventh-round pick for Eli Ankou. The Dallas Cowboys knew they needed help with their front seven, so this trade made sense. Dallas has not had the greatest luck when it comes to defensive linemen this season.
This offseason, the Dallas Cowboys signed Poe and six-time Pro Bowl defensive lineman Gerald McCoy and Dontari Poe. Both of them have since been released. McCoy was let go after suffering a season-ending injury, and Poe was released due to him reportedly being overweight and not producing on the field. Dallas also lost Trysten Hill to a season-ending torn ACL.
NFL Trade Deadline: Why the Dallas Cowboys made the trade for Eli Ankou
The Dallas Cowboys made the trade for Eli Ankou because they're in desperate need of help on their defensive line. Currently the Cowboys are sitting in last place in rush defense. They need all the help they can get when it comes to stopping the run.
Positives to the trade:
- Ankou has a huge frame. He stands at 6-foot-3 and weighs 325 pounds.
- The Cowboys are hoping that Ankou can use that frame to clog rushing lanes for the Dallas defense.
- Eli Ankou is 25 years old and has a lot of football that he can still play.
- He has potential to cause disruptions in run blocking for opposing offensive linemen.
- Dallas needs all the help they can get on the defensive line.
Negatives to the trade:
- Ankou is not going to make a huge splash for the Dallas Cowboys defense and is not someone that will keep opposing offensive coordinators up at night.
- Ankou is not someone you would label a sack machine.
- The defensive lineman has only racked up 1.5 sacks in both his college and NFL careers.
- Ankou is known for carrying unnecessary weight.
- Eli Ankou has only played in 16 games in the NFL.
The Dallas Cowboys did not make this trade for a long-term fix for their defensive line struggles. This trade was most likely a temporary fit until Trysten Hill recovers and returns next season. The Cowboys will draft a defensive lineman in next year's draft and we could potentially see Eli Ankou released at the end of this season.
Either way, Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys needed a body to throw in on their already struggling defense and they only gave up a seventh round pick.