A source wouldn't talk about the Cowboys' interest in free agent cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha. Or if they even have any. But the rumor mill is smoking with reports that one of the NFL's best players has the Cowboys and the Jets bidding for his services.
Asomugha played for Cowboys coordinator Rob Ryan in Oakland for five years after the Raiders made Asomugha a first-round pick in 2003. Asomugha and Darrelle Revis are regarded as the best cornerbacks in football.
"I had him in Oakland," Ryan said after Friday morning's walkthrough. "He was a great player there. ...I know he’ll be great wherever he goes. I know that. He’s a terrific person, a terrific player. He’s smart; he’s talented. Whoever gets him, I’m sure they will have to pay a billion dollars for him in this market, but you know, the guy is phenomenal. He’s a great person. Last year, I don’t know how he didn’t get back-to-back man of the years. I think that’s a rip off. That other guy must be a hell of a guy."
Ryan's twin brother, Rex, coaches the Jets. Rob was asked if it got down to a bidding war between the Cowboys and Jets, which Ryan would win.
"I’m going to say Jerry Jones. Or Stephen [Jones]. Take your pick. The Jones family," Ryan said.
While Jerry Jones loves big-name players -- remember he signed big-name cornerback Deion Sanders in 1995 -- but Asmougha doesn't make sense for the Cowboys. "Only if he'll play safety," said a Cowboys' insider. The Cowboys are in desperate need for safety, where second-year players Barry Church and Akwasi Owusu-Ansah are with the first-team right now. Neither Church nor Owusu-Ansah have much experience. They also are hurting at defensive end after Stephen Bowen signed with the Redskins. Second-year player Sean Lissemore is with the first unit at end.
Cowboys coach Jason Garrett reiterated Stephen Jones' comment from Wednesday that the team is happy with their three cornerbacks -- starters Terence Newman and Mike Jenkins and nickel back Orlando Scandrick.
"We feel great about the corners that we have," Garrett said Friday. "Terence Newman and Mike Jenkins have both been Pro Bowl guys, and we feel like Orlando Scandrick has a chance to continue to grow as a player. He’s our nickel guy right now and has a chance to compete as a starter at some point in his career. We really think those guys have done a good job starting camp, getting themselves acclimated in this defense. We expect them to continue to grow as players."
-- Charean Williams