Since 2015, the Dallas Cowboys have not had a defenseman’s record for more than three interceptions in a season. During that time (six seasons in the NFL), Dallas lacked a real “ball-hawk” on his defense.
They may have finally found one this offseason in the safety of 28-year-old Damontae Kazee.
After tearing his Achilles heel in Game 5 of the 2020 season, Kazee saw his free will value drop drastically. In late March, the former Atlanta Falcon was hired on a one-year, $ 1.1 million contract. Kazee will be reunited with his former head coach Dan Quinn, who has seen security do big things in Atlanta.
In 2018, the 28-year-old was one of the best securities in all of football. Kazee was a true disruptor to the Falcons’ defense, registering 82 tackles, 10 SEBs and recording seven league-leading interceptions. Kazee became the 10th Atlanta Falcon never record at least seven interceptions in a season.
Kazee 2018 PFF The defensive rating of 77.9 was by far the best of his career, as was his exceptional cover rating of 82.9.
Kazee wasn’t so dominant in 2019, but he still has a solid season recording 74 tackles and intercepting three assists. The 10 interceptions Kazee recorded in 2018 and 2019 was only one less (11 to 10) than the amount of the Cowboys’ overall high school during that time period.
That statement alone should show you just how much Kazee could mean in this defense.
New S-Cowboys Damontae Kazee are tied for the NFL lead with 10 INTs in the 2018 and 2019 seasons. Just one pick less than the Cowboys high school overall combined during that time. DC Dan Quinn and high school coach Joe Whitt Jr. get their guy. pic.twitter.com/JyqXBcnp8R
– Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) March 26, 2021
Getting out of a ripped Achilles is never easy and he might face some bumps in the road, but while he may be the 2019 version of himself, that would be huge for this defense. Kazee will be a much-needed upgrade from former free-starting defenseman Xavier Woods, who, despite his 14 other games (48-34), has half as many career interceptions as Kazee (10-5) .
If he’s able to stay healthy, ball hawk Damontae Kazee could be the missing piece of defense the Cowboys have been looking for.
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