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Cowboys excited to add defensive end who once got shut down by an Eagles backup offensive lineman

I’m only telling the truth.

NFL: JAN 21 NFC Championship Game - Vikings at Eagles Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Okay, obvious trolling headline aside, I think the Dallas Cowboys signing Everson Griffen is a nice pickup for them.

The former Minnesota Vikings defensive end has logged 57 sacks and 138 quarterback hits in 87 starts since becoming a full-time player in 2014. That’s an average of 9.5 sacks and 23 quarterback hits per season.

Now, for the record, Griffen did get shut down by Halapoulivaati Vaitai in the 2018 NFC Championship Game. You know, that matchup where the Vikings embarrassingly choked away an opportunity to have home field advantage in Super Bowl LII by getting blown out 38 to 7? Yeah, Griffen only managed one quarterback hit while going up against Big V that night. We shouldn’t forget that.

But what just might be a little more relevant now that Vaitai is gone and Andre Dillard is starting at left tackle for the Eagles is that Griffen had success against the latter last year.

Yikes.

The numbers aren’t prettier than the film. Dillard allowed nine total pressures in the form of two quarterback hits and seven hurries, according to Pro Football Focus. And that was on only 46 snaps played.

In fairness to Dillard, this game marked his first significant regular season playing time in the NFL. He was thrown into the fire with Jason Peters getting hurt mid-game. The Eagles were also trailing in this situation, thus allowing the Vikings’ pass rush to really tee off and not worry about stopping the run. Dillard has also reportedly bulked up in order to better handle NFL edge rushers moving forward.

Still, Dillard has much to prove. He’ll get the opportunity to do so while facing off against Griffen at least twice per season.