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7/02/2005

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He can still play, Canty
by H. Cox

The draft has passed us by and everyone knows which team selected whom. That done and over with the spotlight moved to reviewing all the players and their possible aid to their respective teams. Most of the fanfare is given to the first round and maybe even second round picks. After that most of the other players are considered good chances of making the team but not starting. So being selected in the fourth round, a player isn’t likely to make a large impression on a team. That does happen occasionally but the odds are against that occurrence. Well the odds have shifted and this year it is going to happen for the Dallas Cowboys. Announcing the arrival of DE Chris Canty from the University of Virginia!

“Hello, my name is Chris Canty, and this is my resume.”

He is 6’7” and 280 lbs. He led the ACC defensive linemen in tackles as a sophomore and a junior. He was also leading the conference again, as a senior, before injuring his knee to miss the rest of the season. He knows how to get to the ball carrier from the down linemen position. The system he played in mirrors what Dallas is going to be playing this season. Parcells wishes to implement the 3-4 defense and Canty thrived in the same scheme under a former Parcells assistant, Al Groh. So learning the techniques won’t be as difficult as coming into a completely new style of defense. Yes there are some differences, but knowing is half the battle, so he has a jump on that end of the scale.

Projected to become a certain first round pick he was headed for big money in the NFL. Then the injury bug hit when a teammate rolled over on his knee in the fourth game of his senior year. On top of that he was hit with a bottle in the left eye, forcing him to undergo surgery to repair damage. Now he was dropped to the second day of the draft and seemed to be forgotten. Dallas’ staff had not forgotten him and formulated a plan to move into a position to pick him up. They worked out a trade with the Eagles to move up in the fourth round. Without much publicity, Canty joined the Dallas Cowboys for the 2005 season.

Up to this point noone has been able to see what he can do because of surgeries on his knee and eye. He isn’t allowed to suit up for contact until the beginning of training camp later this month. You can bet there are going to be some surprised individuals once that happens. He isn’t going to move into the starting lineup but he is just under that ability and will become a solid force up front for Mike Zimmer’s defensive line. When opposing offensive linemen see either Ellis or Glover head to the sidelines they will give a sigh of relief. That is until they get to “meet” Mr. Canty on the next play. We have got a real gem here and he will show he is still first round material in a fourth round selection slot. The future is looking really bright and everyone needs to get ready for football.

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