Allen Kim

Dallas Cowboys Trade For Rolando McClain

Jul 01, 2014 6:00 PM EST

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the Dallas Cowboys have traded a 2015 sixth-round pick to the Baltimore Ravens in exchange for LB Rolando McClain and a 2015 seventh-round pick.

Dallas just placed Sean Lee on injured reserve, officially ending his season. This closes the door on a potential late-season return, and it doesn’t really change all that much for the Cowboys linebacking corps.

“He sounds as excited about football as I've ever heard him,” said McClain's agent, Pat Dye.

McClain is about to turn 25, so he’s certainly young enough that he can resurrect his career if he is truly motivated to do so. However, he has retired from football twice in the span of 15 months, and he hasn’t played in a game since November of 2012. He’s also had numerous run-ins with the law in the last couple of years.

As the former No. 8 overall pick from the 2010 NFL Draft, McClain has a lot of upside with all of his natural talent. He’ll be competing against Justin Durant, Anthony Hitchens and DeVonte Holloman to man the middle for Dallas’ defense, and it’s not out of the question that he lands on their final 53-man roster.

This is a low-risk move for the Cowboys. His non-guaranteed contract is only for one year, and it didn’t cost them much to obtain him. As for the Ravens, the fact that they were able to upgrade one of their draft picks for a player they didn’t expect to see on the field again is impressive work by GM Ozzie Newsome.

“I see, and Rolando sees, the Dallas situation as a great opportunity given Sean's injury, and you're talking about a great franchise and a great organization,” Dye said. “I've described to any of the clients we've had through the years there — Emmitt Smith, Dexter Coakley, DeMarcus Ware, Marcus Spears, Keith Brooking, DeMarco Murray — that playing for the Cowboys in football is kind of like playing for the Yankees in baseball. Just an iconic franchise. With kind of what he's done going back to his time with the Raiders, I think that all of this has led him to a point where he feels like the game is too important to him to give up. He's just 24 years old. He's very talented. He's very bright. Tough. Competitive. There's a reason he was a top-10 pick at a position that is almost impossible to be a top-10 pick. Hopefully this situation will go smoothly.”