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May 29, 2008

Defending Greg Ellis

The first reaction most people have to news that linebacker Greg Ellis is unhappy again is _ not again.
Ellis is seemingly unhappy every off season for one reason or another.
But just because its tiring to read, write and hear about doesn't mean Ellis doesn't have a point or two.
When the Cowboys switched to the 3-4 from the 4-3, he asked to be traded or cut because he was too small to play end in the 3-4. The Cowboys eventually benched him in favor of Chris Canty.
He then asked to be traded or released when the Cowboys moved him from end to linebacker because it was a position he never played before. He felt if he didn't make the transition the Cowboys would rid of him.
And then last season he saw the drafting of Anthony Spencer in the first round when he was
coming off of Achilles tendon surgery as a sign they were going to phase him out.
Ellis said he wanted a new contract, proving the Cowboys were committed to him,
or he wanted to be cut or traded. He even threatened to retire.
Remember the back drop of all of this was the below market value contract the Cowboys convinced him to sign several years back. He finally got on the field when the Cowboys made some adjustments to his contract.
Of course Ellis had the best season of his career, with 12.5 sacks, being named
to the Pro Bowl for the first time and receiving the NFL comeback player of the
year award.
For the record, the Cowboys have the right to do what they want to put the best team on
the field.
But it's understandable for Ellis to wonder aloud about the team's motives.
Here he is coming off a great season and hoping to build on it in 2008 only to find out that the team is trying to take his starting job away.
Again just cause you are paranoid, doesn't mean they are not trying to get you.

Clarence E. Hill Jr.


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Clarence, Ellis didn't have to sign that contract (which may have been good value at that time) -- it wasn't like he was negotiating with Lombardi back in the 60's, when the alternative was nothing. "For the record", Jerry Jones didn't have to guarantee his insurance policy with up-front money last year. Every year it's something with Mack Brown's self-proclaimed baby-sitter and I wonder who's the baby?

I have very little sympathy for Greg Ellis' concerns about his starting status. His act is getting real old. After Jerry ponied-up last year, he should have his rear-end out there doing everything he can to show he should be the starter instead of crying about "maybe" not being the man. Regardless, the best player should play. Ellis makes more in one year than I did in 21 years combined as a Marine and I had to re-prove myself everywhere I went during my career; and the consequences of me not being up to par were a heck of a lot more severe than some unhappy millionaire football player. I used to be a big fan of his; now I wish we had drafted Moss instead.

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