The Dallas Cowboys released veteran defensive tackle Dontari Poe on Wednesday. Some have speculated the move might’ve been because he kneeled during the national anthem.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones made it clear it had more to do with him being overweight and under-performing.
“When you’re 30 pounds overweight and you’re not doing anything about what’s keeping you from performing well on the field, there is no reason to get into the other stuff,” Jones told ESPN’s Chris Mortenson.
Jones also commented on the kneeling: “I understand your question and I’m deliberately not going to answer it,” Jones said. “We have a platform here but the platform on the football field has a high standard, and he [Poe] was not up to the standard. He needed to correct that and he did not. I’m going to leave it at that.”
Poe signed a two-year, $8.5M deal with the team in the offseason. He played 53 percent of the Cowboys’ defensive snaps through seven games, the most of any defensive tackle on the team. He generated just seven tackles and zero sacks.
Poe was one of three defensive players the Cowboys moved on from this week. They also traded defensive end Everson Griffen to Detroit and cut cornerback Daryl Worley.
The Dallas defense ranks last in points per game allowed with a whopping 34.7, last in offensive TDs per game allowed (3.9), last in rushing yards per game allowed (178.3), and 27th in total yards allowed. The 34.7 points per game would be the second-highest in a single season by a team in the Super Bowl era if this pace holds up.
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