Leighton Vander Esch

Joe

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Leighton Vander Esch led the Cowboys in tackles, he was really impressive, but watching a Cowboy's game with Joe Buck and Troy Aikman, I've noticed any showering of praise towards Vander Esch, they'll always include black linebacker Jaylon Smith in the discussion, it's like they've got a (((producer))) in their ear dictating them what to say.
 

Extra Point

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Leighton Vander Esch led the Cowboys in tackles, he was really impressive, but watching a Cowboy's game with Joe Buck and Troy Aikman, I've noticed any showering of praise towards Vander Esch, they'll always include black linebacker Jaylon Smith in the discussion, it's like they've got a (((producer))) in their ear dictating them what to say.

Good catch. It seems that they can't just praise a white man without including something to build up blacks too.

Another thing you'll see announcers do is whenever a white player makes a good play, they'll mention a black player. For example a white player makes a good catch and they'll talk about what a great block a black offensive lineman made. Like clockwork.
 

Joe

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The thing that bugs the crap out of me is the condescension the talking heads have towards white players, particularly QB's, you'd think Tim Tebow, Joe Flacco, Blake Bortles, etc.... raped a college co-ed...Oh wait that was Jameis Winston, or maybe they sexually assaulted an Uber Driver.....Oh that was Jameis as well
 

Bucky

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Tremendous young LB and an excellent 1st round pick for Dallas!leighton_vander_esch.jpg
 

Truthteller

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Dallas re-signed Sean Lee, although he took a huge pay cut. Hopefully he can stay healthy and start next season, along side LVE.
 

Shadowlight

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Nice to see. His injury history is now legendary but when he does play he is tops. Here is hoping he can stay healthy because he is still a tremendous linebacker.

Sean Lee plays defense the way it was meant to be played. It is a pleasure to watch a defender play who can properly tackle and use smarts in this day and age of defenders who run around with no sense of purpose. But teams prefer black underwear Olympic types, many of whom play clueless defense and aren't worth a pound of salt.
 

Don Wassall

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Unfortunately Jaylon Smith is a fixture as the starter on the inside next to LVE. Smith had 121 combined tackles last season along with 4 sacks, pretty much living up to his lofty draft status of 34th overall in '17. Due to his extensive injury history of bad hamstrings Sean Lee is currently a role player much as he finished last season, but a lot can happen before and during the regular season that may cause the Cowboys to turn to him again.
 

Extra Point

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Vander Esch was rumored to have neck issues before the 2018 draft. He had a great first season. Unfortunately, in his second year, he has been battling a neck injury. There's some speculation that he won't play again this year.

Vander Esch has proven himself to be an upper echelon player. Let's hope his neck problems don't derail his career.
 

Bucky

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Let's hope this surgery goes well and LVE is back making plays for Cowboys next year.
 

Extra Point

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Vander Esch is out for 6-8 weeks with a broken collar bone. He will require surgery to repair it.

Vander Esch is an All-Pro caliber linebacker but, unfortunately, has a history of injuries. If he can stay healthy he's one of the best linebackers in the league.
 

Don Wassall

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I'm expecting a big bounce back season from Vander Esch, who may use it as a springboard to sign with another team next year if the Cowboys don't want him back.

Cowboys’ LB Leighton Vander Esch spent the offseason adding ‘body armor’ to his frame
LVE doing all he can to return to his Pro Bowl form for the 2021 season.

by Brian Martin

Making the Pro Bowl as a rookie in the NFL isn’t the easiest task to accomplish, but that’s exactly what Dallas Cowboys linebacker Leighton Vander Esch did back in 2018. Sadly things haven’t gone so well for him since then, but he’s hoping to change that in 2021. In fact, he’s spent the entire offseason preparing to return to his Pro Bowl form.

While some players prefer to take a break from the game in the offseason others like to get a jumpstart on things and LVE sounds as if he falls into that second group.

“I feel great,” Vander Esch said. “Best shape I feel that I’ve been in. I was here all offseason training, lifting, running and doing all of that, just trying to get better and put myself in position to be successful this year. Not that I didn’t in past years, but it was just a bad string of luck for a little bit, so I’m just trying to do everything I can and control what I can control to go out there and have a great season.

“I’ve been training and working out hard and trying to put some more body armor on my frame to make sure that I do give myself the best chance possible to stay healthy.”

Nobody would accuse Vander Esch of being a slacker or anything like that, but to hear he’s doing everything within his power to put his run of bad luck behind him is encouraging. Devoting his entire offseason to accomplish such a feat will hopefully allow him to do just that.

LVE’s mention of adding extra “body armor” to his frame brings to mind upgrading a character in a video game. If this were a video game, we should expect just about all of his physical and mental attributes to increase significantly and that would definitely be good news for the Dallas Cowboys defense.

No doubt a healthy Vander Esch makes Dallas’ defense better. Where he fits is another question altogether. That’s something Dan Quinn and his coaching staff will have to work out in training camp, but whether it’s at the MIKE or the WILL, he should be in line for a starting job this year.

It remains to be seen how all of this pays off, but it is encouraging to see Vander Esch putting in the work in order to hopefully become a better version of himself. The offseason is a time for optimism. What do you think?

https://www.bloggingtheboys.com/202...-the-offseason-adding-body-armor-to-his-frame
 

Don Wassall

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A rare first round pick of a White linebacker (though it should be a lot more frequent), Vander Esch started off his career like he was going to be the next Luke Kuechly, but injuries greatly slowed him down, including a neck problem. However he started to come back strong last year and if he stays healthy could return to beast status this year:

LB Leighton Vander Esch

Vander Esch’s time in Dallas has been the definition of up and down, collecting 140 tackles and making the Pro Bowl as a rookie, before struggling with injuries and poor play in 2019 and 2020, and then rebounding a bit in 2021, particularly in the second half of the year.

During the first week of training camp Vander Esch appeared to be reading, processing, and reacting at a faster speed than we’ve ever seen, including his sensational rookie season. The question was whether he’d be able to take those intangibles and couple it with the necessary physicality of the position that has led to injury problems for him.

Through the first practices of camp with pads on, the answer has been a resounding “yes.” Vander Esch looks to be seeing the game a second or two earlier than the 21 other players on the field, and his body has been able to hold up while practicing with genuine toughness and physicality.

It’s early in camp, and health will always be a question mark with Vander Esch, but there’s a growing confidence that 2022 could be the best version of Leighton Vander Esch that we’ve seen.

https://www.audacy.com/1053thefan/s...ys-have-stepped-up-at-camp-since-pads-came-on
 
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