David Irving Shines in Increased Role in Victory Over Tampa Bay
Those who follow the Dallas Cowboys very closely had probably already heard of David Irving prior to the Cowboys’ 26-20 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Even those who haven’t followed the team closely through the season may still have known who David Irving was after he took over the 2nd half of the Cowboys’ victory over the Green Bay Packers in week 6. However, playing on a national primetime stage of Sunday Night Football, Irving had his coming out party to the rest of the NFL and its followers, and he played a crucial role in the Cowboys’ win.
Playing an increased role after fellow defensive linemen Demarcus Lawrence and Cedric Thornton missed the game due to injury, Irving made his presence felt rushing from the left side of the line, particularly in some key drive late in the game. Irving finished the game with 2 sacks, a deflected pass, 5 hits on the quarterback, and 10 quarterback hurries, providing a dynamic that the Cowboys have struggled to consistently see from their pass rushers.
As a 6’7” 270 lb defensive end, Irving is an athletic freak who’s able to get outstanding leverage that allows him to quickly get to the quarterback and disrupt throwing lanes. Still just 23 years old, Irving has proven to be a nice find for the Cowboys, after he was picked up off the Kansas City Chiefs’ practice squad during the middle of last season. Due to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, the ‘Boys will surely look to find a way to keep Irving in the fold. His presence along with the improved play of DE Benson Mayowa, as well as the return of suspended DE Randy Gregory will only continue to help the Cowboys get a pass rush as the games get more and more important the rest of the season.
Jared Wingate is a local Dallas resident who is passionate about 'dem Cowboys! He is also a Broadcast Journalism major. Subscribe and follow him on Twitter @wingate_jared.