Dallas Cowboys Add DT Stephen Paea, Replace Terrell McClain

The Dallas Cowboys knew this was coming: One-Tech defensive tackle Terrell McClain - who had interest from market value rising.

However, McClain played his best season as a pro, which rendered Thornton to a backup and rotational role.

No blockbusters, but the Redskins made a few moves to bolster their defense on Thursday at the start of the National Football League free agent signing period. Dallas has only $8.5 million in salary cap space and isn't in position to compete with most teams in free agency. He has proven the ability to be a productive player in the role the Cowboys defense asks their nose tackle to play and has proven he is capable of starting games and playing heavy snaps while maintaining effectiveness.

Ultimately, McClain's exit is a definite setback for the Cowboys after the team ranked first against the run last season.

McClain was drafted by the Carolina Panthers in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft. He also had 2 1/2 sacks, eight quarterback pressures and two forced fumbles in helping to solidify the interior of the Cowboys' line, allowing Tyrone Crawford to move outside to end. He returned for the team's AFC wild-card playoff game against Houston, contributing two tackles.

McGee played four years at Oklahoma, seeing action in 34 games with 15 starts.

The 5-10, 205-pound Swearinger is entering his fifth National Football League season after initially being selected by the Houston Texans in the second round (57th overall) of the 2013 draft.

  • Julie Sanders