27-Year-Old Linebacker – Dallas Cowboys
2015 Fantasy Football Outlook
After a turbulent 2012-13 that saw him exit Oakland and briefly hover in Baltimore, followed by off-the-field issues all the while, it looked like McClain's career was spiraling to an early end. But D...
Rolando McClain Contract Information:
Re-signed with the Cowboys on a one-year, $3 million contract in April 2015. Deal includes up to $1 million in incentives.
McClain (knee) could begin training camp on the PUP list, the Dallas Morning News reports.
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Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
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Rolando McClain: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)The middle linebacker seemed to get his career back on track last season with the Cowboys, but McClain will now have to sit until Week 5 before returning to the lineup. Sean Lee and Anthony Hitchens are the most likely candidates to fill in for McClain while he's out, who at least will get extra time to recover from his arthroscopic knee surgery before he does get on the field.
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)As a result, McClain is not participating in the Cowboys' current OTAs and he could be held out until training camp. That said, McClain underwent the procedure with an eye toward being 100 percent when the regular season begins and remains on track to start at middle linebacker for Dallas this coming season. In 13 games last year, McClain recorded 81 tackles for the Cowboys.
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)McClain was able to resurrect his career while joining the Cowboys for training camp last season, ultimately winning the starting middle linebacker job and finishing second on the team in tackles (108) over his 13 games. The Cowboys had prepared for McClain's potential departure by inking veterans Jasper Brinkley and Keith Rivers to deals, but they're slated to serve as depth in the linebacking corps with McClain being retained. McClain was limited by knee and groin injuries in addition to a concussion last season, but should be fully healthy heading into the 2015 campaign.
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Legal troubles have derailed the career of the eighth overall pick in 2010, but the Cowboys may be willing to give him another chance. McClain didn't play at all in 2013 though, and despite Dallas' need at linebacker following Sean Lee's latest injury he's a long shot to crack the roster or have a meaningful role.
McClain has been a disappointment since the Raiders drafted him eighth overall in 2010, but at least he showed some signs of breaking out last season. His 99 tackles aren't impressive at a glance, but he was active in coverage (14 passes defended) and totaled 48 tackles (42 solo) and four sacks in the final six weeks of the season. McClain is on the hot seat entering his third year and has a promising defensive mind (new head coach Dennis Allen) calling the shots in Oakland, so 2012 might finally be the year McClain lives up to his talent – assuming he’s a free man. Shortly before press time, McClain was convicted of assault and battery and faces a 180-day prison sentence. He’s practicing with the team, pending appeal, and it remains to be seen whether he’ll be available for the 2012 season and/or whether he’ll be suspended. As productive replacement linebackers are easy to find off the waiver wire, McClain is worth a late gamble so long as his case is unresolved.
After being selected eighth overall by the Raiders in last year’s draft, McClain was generally a disappointment, as he totaled just 85 tackles (59 solo) in 15 games. As weak as those numbers are, McClain pretty much has nowhere to go but up, and it’d be a huge disappointment if the former Alabama star failed to hit triple-digit tackles in each of his first two years in the league. Expect the Raiders to make a special effort to get more out of McClain in 2011.
Rookies tend not to be great IDP options, but in the average year there are typically one or two players — usually linebackers — who step right in and produce. McClain could be this year’s version of Brian Cushing or James Laurinaitis; a first-year player who starts from Week 1 and racks up 100-plus tackles. The Raiders had enough faith in McClain’s potential that they dealt incumbent starter Kirk Morrison to Jacksonville during the draft. McClain has good size at 6-4, 258, and should be able to consistently fight off blockers and get to ball carriers.