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With Matt Eberflus leaving, the Dallas Cowboys have reached an agreement with Kris Richard to be their defensive passing game coordinator, sources confirmed.

Richard spent the previous three seasons as the Seattle Seahawks’ defensive coordinator but was a surprise dismissal after the 2017 season by head coach Pete Carroll. Eberflus, the Cowboys linebackers coach since 2011, is expected to become defensive coordinator with the Indianapolis Colts once Josh McDaniels is named head coach following Super Bowl LII.

Eberflus was given the passing game coordinator title last season, during which he effectively managed the back seven of the defense and relayed the calls by coordinator Rod Marinelli, who also runs the defensive line.

Richard helped develop the famed “Legion of Boom” secondary with Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor, before becoming the coordinator after Dan Quinn left to be head coach of the Atlanta Falcons.

The Cowboys run a similar scheme as that of the Seahawks; but with young secondary players including Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis, Xavier Woods, Byron Jones and Jeff Heath, Richard can help their development.

The Cowboys also need a linebackers coach and have interviewed John Pagano.They are close to hiring Kellen Moore as quarterbacks coach. And they are expected to keep Gary Brown as running backs coach.

Dallas already has hired Paul Alexander (offensive line) and Sanjay Lal (wide receivers), and it is looking at Keith O’Quinn as special-teams coach. The tight ends job remains open.

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With Matt Eberflus leaving, the Dallas Cowboys have reached an agreement with Kris Richard to be their defensive passing game coordinator, sources confirmed.

Richard spent the previous three seasons as the Seattle Seahawks’ defensive coordinator but was a surprise dismissal after the 2017 season by head coach Pete Carroll. Eberflus, the Cowboys linebackers coach since 2011, is expected to become defensive coordinator with the Indianapolis Colts once Josh McDaniels is named head coach following Super Bowl LII.

Eberflus was given the passing game coordinator title last season, during which he effectively managed the back seven of the defense and relayed the calls by coordinator Rod Marinelli, who also runs the defensive line.

Richard helped develop the famed “Legion of Boom” secondary with Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor, before becoming the coordinator after Dan Quinn left to be head coach of the Atlanta Falcons.

The Cowboys run a similar scheme as that of the Seahawks; but with young secondary players including Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis, Xavier Woods, Byron Jones and Jeff Heath, Richard can help their development.

The Cowboys also need a linebackers coach and have interviewed John Pagano.They are close to hiring Kellen Moore as quarterbacks coach. And they are expected to keep Gary Brown as running backs coach.

Dallas already has hired Paul Alexander (offensive line) and Sanjay Lal (wide receivers), and it is looking at Keith O’Quinn as special-teams coach. The tight ends job remains open.

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The changes Jerry Jones and Jason Garrett have alluded to since the Dallas Cowboys’ season ended have started.

According to multiple sources, special-teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia will be allowed to leave despite being under contract with the Cowboys for two more seasons, and quarterbacks coach Wade Wilson and secondary coach Joe Baker, whose contracts were set to expire, were told they will not be back with the team.

Bisaccia will most likely to join Jon Gruden with the Oakland Raiders.

The future of offensive line coach Frank Pollack is also in question, despite having three Pro Bowl players — Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick and Zack Martin — in place since 2014. Pollack took over as line coach in 2015; during his tenure the Cowboys have finished ninth, second and second in the NFL in rushing.

Pass protection, however, was an issue in 2017, especially with Smith missing three full games and most of a fourth because of injuries. The Cowboys allowed 32 sacks; 22 came in the final eight games, including eight against Atlanta without Smith. Dak Prescott threw just one touchdown pass in the games in which Smith did not play.

Bisaccia had been the Cowboys’ assistant head coach and special-teams coordinator since 2013. While the return games have not produced much, the Cowboys’ coverage teams have been among the best in the NFL. The Cowboys allowed just 75 punt return yards this season, the fewest in the league. Before a late-season slide, Dan Bailey had been the most accurate kicker in NFL history, and punter Chris Jones had his best season.

The Cowboys had made a commitment to adding or keeping key special-teams contributors over the years.

Wilson had been the quarterbacks coach since 2007. He helped the development of Tony Romo and Prescott, who earned Pro Bowl honors, but the Cowboys drafted just two quarterbacks during Wilson’s tenure: Stephen McGee in 2009 and Prescott in 2016. Both were fourth-round picks.

Baker, a college teammate of Garrett’s, was promoted to secondary coach in 2016 after spending four seasons as an assistant secondary or safeties coach. The Cowboys have not had a secondary member lead the team with more than three interceptions since Terence Newman had four in 2011. The Cowboys selected four defensive backs — Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis, Xavier Woods and Marquez White — in last year’s draft after opting to let veterans Brandon Carr, Barry Church, Morris Claiborne and J.J. Wilcox leave in free agency.

Carr, Church and Claiborne were much more productive with their new teams than they had been with the Cowboys in their final seasons.

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When Chidobe Awuzie saw Marshawn Lynch coming toward him in the second quarter of the Dallas Cowboys’ win against the Oakland Raiders last week, he did not have a decision to make.

“Real ball players, when the play snaps, you just do your job,” Awuzie said. “I’m not going to make a business decision or do anything like that; I’m going to do my job and that was to stop him where I hit him and make sure he didn’t get any more yards, and I think I did a pretty good job of that. If you’re on that football field, you should be able to do everything, you should want to do everything, love to do everything. That’s all part of it. People who really love football, that’s the type of plays you’re going to get. They ain’t going to make no business decision.”

There have been contact-averse defensive backs in the NFL for years. Awuzie, the Cowboys’ second-round pick, didn’t back down. Awuzie is listed at 202 pounds. Lynch is 215 pounds and one of the toughest runners to tackle in the NFL.

The collision sent Awuzie backward, but Lynch did not gain any more yards after contact. And Awuzie popped up quickly enough to see Lynch stick his tongue out at him. His willingness to stand strong against Lynch earned him praise from teammates and coaches.

“Maybe line 1 with him is the demeanor with which he plays and we saw that in college, played a lot of different spots for them at Colorado, was regarded as the leader of the secondary, leader of the defense there,” coach Jason Garrett said. “So that’s one of the things we really liked about him. We didn’t get a chance to see him for a lot of the year because of his injury, but he always went about it the right way. He was preparing to play. Since he’s gotten a chance here the last few weeks, I think we’ve seen a lot of things that we liked about him coming out of school. A lot of that is the demeanor, the physicality, the competitive spirit.”

So what is the sensation that comes with such a hit?

“Loud. My neck is still stiff a little bit,” Awuzie said. “It was very loud, very forceful, big. I bounced up pretty quick. Had to. Can’t be looking like no sucker.”

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Late in the season it’s not so rare to come up with more than seven inactive players.

In attempting to figure out the Dallas Cowboys’ 46-man active roster for Sunday night’s game against the Oakland Raiders, it’s easy to come up with more than seven players to sit.

First, cornerback Orlando Scandrick (back), defensive end David Irving (concussion), linebacker Justin Durant (concussion) and wide receiver Brice Butler (foot) have been ruled out because of injury.

The Cowboys also don’t need a third tailback (Trey Williams) or a fourth tight end (Blake Jarwin).

You can make the case they don’t need an eighth offensive lineman (Chaz Green), ninth defensive lineman (Daniel Ross) or eighth defensive back (Bene Benwikere), too.

So when you get down to the final few spots, who brings the most value?

Let’s start with Benwikere. He has become a pretty big part of the special-teams unit, but if something were to happen to Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis or Anthony Brown at cornerback, Benwikere can step in and play.

Given the presence of Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch, Ross makes some sense because he can bring size to the defensive line at 305 pounds. Ross has yet to play since the Cowboys claimed him off the Kansas City Chiefs’ practice squad, but his addition was made with a long-term view.

With La’el Collins getting two practices in for the first time in three weeks because of a back injury, Green would seem to be the most dispensable. With Byron Bell already active as the swing tackle, Green’s only real function without two injuries up front would be on the field goal protection unit. Is that enough value to dress on gameday?

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Here’s a look at the first-half impact of the Dallas Cowboys’ draft class:

Taco Charlton, DE, first round: He finally picked up his first sack of the season against the Kansas City Chiefs and he hopes that opens the dam in the second half. The Cowboys have been able to rush the passer effectively without him making much of an impact, but they need more. The Cowboys will give him snaps as the season progresses to show what he can do. Grade: Below average

Chidobe Awuzie, DB, second round: A hamstring strain has limited his effectiveness for most of the season. After a strong summer, the Cowboys wanted to use him in their subpackages, but he hasn’t been able to stay healthy. He could become a full-time safety when he gets back on the field. Grade: Incomplete

Jourdan Lewis, CB, third round: Lewis was not able to practice much in the summer due to a hamstring injury, but he showed quickly that he was not afraid of the big stage. He played so well that the Cowboys decided to part ways with veteran Nolan Carroll. Lewis has natural ball skills and has one of the Cowboys’ three interceptions on the season. He could become a starter in the base defense soon. Grade: Above average

Ryan Switzer, WR, fourth round: He was drafted because of his return ability, but Switzer’s decision-making has been spotty at times. He has also yet to break a big return in either the punt or kickoff game. Switzer was always going to be limited in his role offensively, due to the receiving targets ahead of him on the depth chart. The Cowboys need him to have a greater influence on field position. Grade: Average

Xavier Woods, S, sixth round: In the past few weeks, he has moved into the subpackages and been part of a rotation of safeties. The Cowboys believe he has the skills to make plays on the ball and has really good awareness. Woods needs to shore up his tackling to earn more trust from the coaches, but he can see plays develop quickly. Grade: Average

Marquez White, CB, sixth round: White showed flashes in the summer and in preseason, but he was among the Cowboys’ final roster cuts. He has spent the regular season on the practice squad. Unless there are injuries, he will likely spend the entire season on the practice squad, with an eye to a bigger role in 2018. Grade: Incomplete

Noah Brown, WR, seventh round: He has done a nice job mostly in a blocking role offensively. Brown is a big body and is willing to take on defenders, if necessary. He made one of the key blocks on an Ezekiel Elliott touchdown catch. Brown needs to improve his technique as a receiver, but he has raw skills worth developing. Grade: Average

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The Dallas Cowboys’ work week is over. Given the team’s bye this weekend, the next time players are due back at The Star is Tuesday at noon for a conditioning run and then meetings.

The two days of practice this week were light. They featured a lot of Cowboys versus Cowboys work, starters against starters — at least those who could practice — and backups against backups. There was not much of a deep dive into what has led to the team’s 2-3 start. That will be saved for the coaches’ work.

But as the Cowboys get ready to come back from the bye, what can they change to make sure 2-3 doesn’t turn into 8-8, 7-9 or worse?

This is more difficult than people believe. The Twitter-verse wants the Cowboys to trade for Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman or a great safety or a pass-rusher. Some want the Cowboys to sign free-agent cornerback Darrelle Revis or another big-name, past-his-prime player.

Is a trade possible? Sure. But the last time the Cowboys made a significant addition at the trade deadline was wide receiver Roy Williams in 2008. That didn’t work out. That doesn’t mean you never make a deal again, but few big names change teams. Yes, the New England Patriots traded Chandler Jones and Jamie Collins and still won a Super Bowl, but everything about the Patriots is the exception and not the norm.

By cutting cornerback Nolan Carroll, the Cowboys have put their faith in third-round draft pick Jourdan Lewis. Carroll was a progress stopper, so he’s out. Now Lewis has to play better and reward the team for its faith over the final 11 weeks.

The Cowboys want to play rookie Chidobe Awuzie more at safety, but he can’t seem to steer clear of hamstring strains. They also want to play rookie safety Xavier Woods more. The Atlanta Falcons had success with multiple rookies and younger players in their secondary last year, but it’s a gamble.

Dallas’ vaunted offensive line needs to play better too. One change could come at left guard, where Chaz Green and Jonathan Cooper have shared starting duties the first five games. Will the Cowboys give Byron Bell a chance to start, which could help their interior pass protection but maybe take away some of their versatility in the run game?

Linebacker Sean Lee’s return to the lineup will absolutely help a defense that has been ripped apart in the two games he has missed. Linebacker Anthony Hitchens should be better as he gets accustomed to game speed after missing the first four games with a tibial plateau fracture. If that happens, the D’s quality of play should be better, and second-year linebacker Jaylon Smith won’t be asked to play so many snaps.

Dallas shouldn’t give away top-end future draft picks in hopes of hitting the jackpot. The Cowboys need their top players to perform better, they need their role players to play better, and they need their coaches to coach better.

The Cowboys’ biggest improvement in the final 11 games has to come from within.

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As Jerry Jones stood outside the locker room after his Dallas Cowboys were crushed by the Denver Broncos on Sunday, he wished they could play another game almost immediately.

“I’m glad we’re not going into a bye, to give you an idea,” Jones said. “I wouldn’t want to stew in this for that long, a couple of weeks. The quicker we get back out there, the better off we are.”

By playing on ESPN’s Monday Night Football, the Cowboys will have to wait an extra day before they take on the Arizona Cardinals to erase the taste of the 42-17 loss in Denver.

“We definitely won’t be discouraged,” running back Ezekiel Elliott said after the game. “Last year at this time we were 1-1. It’s a 16-game season and it’s only Game 2. We can get so much better. If you’re peaking right now, you’re going to have a problem. You really don’t want to be peaking right now. You want to be peaking at the end of the season. We just can’t come out and play like this.”

The players were off on Tuesday and have meetings and a walk-through Wednesday before getting into their normal routine on Thursday with their padded practice.

The extra day allows some of the Cowboys to heal. Quarterback Dak Prescott came out of the game with an ankle injury that will not keep him out of practice, but he is able to get more rehab time. Cornerback Chidobe Awuzie was unable to finish the Denver game because of a hamstring strain.

The Cowboys haven’t suffered a blowout like Sunday’s since a 32-point loss at New Orleans in 2013. Their three losses last season were by a total of 18 points, and the 14-point defeat at Philadelphia came with the bulk of the starters playing sparingly since the Cowboys’ playoff seeding had been set.

“We’re extremely motivated,” receiver Dez Bryant said. “No guy around here is holding their head down because we know who we are. We’re a damn good football team. We practice [as] hard if not harder than any other team in this league. We’re going to bounce back and keep working.”

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FRISCO, Texas — Cornerback Orlando Scandrick will not play Sunday against the Denver Broncos because of a broken hand, but the Dallas Cowboys hope he will be able to return Sept. 25 against the Arizona Cardinals.

Scandrick ran Friday for the first time since the surgery Monday night to repair a fractured third metacarpal. When he returns, he will likely wear extra padding that will be sewn into his glove. In 2014, DeMarco Murray did not miss a game after he had surgery to repair a broken fifth metacarpal.

Scandrick played just nine snaps in the Cowboys’ season-opening win against the New York Giants before injuring his hand in the second quarter.

Anthony Brown will replace Scandrick in the starting lineup and rookie Chidobe Awuzie will serve as the third cornerback. Fellow rookie Jourdan Lewis, who has been slowed by a strained hamstring since the start of training camp, could be active for the first time. The Cowboys also could look to Bene Benwikere as their fourth corner.

Wide receiver Terrance Williams was limited Friday in his first practice of the week and is officially listed as questionable. Williams has not missed a game in his career (65 straight) and missed the first two practices of his career on Wednesday and Thursday. He suffered the injury on the opening snap against the Giants but was able to lead the Cowboys with 68 receiving yards on six catches.

Safety Byron Jones was limited for the second straight practice because of a groin strain, but he said he will play Sunday even though he is listed as questionable.