Remember Randy Gregory, the defensive end that the Cowboys drafted last April in the second round after he tested positive for marijuana at the Combine? Well he’s become a cautionary tale now that he’s been suspended for four games in 2016 after testing positive for drugs four times, three during the 2015 season. Mike Florio at profootballtalk.com comments:
“Gregory consistently has failed to choose football over whatever substance for which he has been testing positive. But the Cowboys necessarily failed to provide him with the resources and assistance necessary to keep him from continuing to fail tests. And Gregory’s agents, who did a great job of puffing him up to a scoop-hungry media before the draft (at one point he was being sold as a top-10 pick despite the failed drug test), apparently haven’t communicated to Gregory the critical importance of getting clean.”
This news came right before another player associated with the Cowboy found himself in hot water. Joseph Randle was arrested for the fifth time in the last 18 months, this time on three counts of aggravated battery, one count of drug possession and one count of criminal damage. The Cowboys had previously released Randle but not until they absolutely had to after his sixth game in 2015 and not until the NFL suspended him.
Both incidents bring to mind comments made by Jerry Jones at the time of the Greg Hardy signing when he trumpeted the Cowboys as the destination for wayward players, saying that the team was focused upon providing an environment where they could be rehabilitated. You have to wonder at what point after Gregory’s third faied drug test was this still about “rehabilitation”.
As Florio implies above, it’s now evident that this was hogwash. Jones is simply running an outlaw program where signing risky players and putting up with deplorable off field behavior until there’s simply no way to keep them on the roster is the priority.
“Talent trumps all” is a common philosophy in the NFL. No one follows that mantra more than the Cowboys. Perhaps it’s time for Jones to pull back and take a look at his franchise and decide if this is really the image that he wants “America’s Team” to project. Regardless, he needs to stop spouting off nonsense about nurturing his players to conquer whatever demons haunt them off the field. It’s all too evident that either there’s little or nothing behind it or it’s not working.