Dec 11, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys linebacker Leighton Vander Esch (55) leaves the field following a game against the Houston Texans at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Raymond Carlin III-USA TODAY Sports
According to ESPN’s Todd Archer, the Dallas Cowboys are continuing to fortify their defense Tuesday afternoon by re-signing linebacker Leighton Vander Esch to a two-year deal with $11 million.
Vander Esch, 27, was drafted 19th overall by the Cowboys in the 2018 NFL Draft. He was a second-team All-Pro at linebacker in his rookie year as well as being named to the Pro Bowl. Vander Esch made 102 tackles as a rookie for Dallas but dealt with injuries during the 2019 and 2020 seasons. Over five NFL seasons, the former Boise State Bronco has 279 solo tackles, and 160 assisted to go along with 3½ sacks and three interceptions.
Vander Esch is the third player added to the Cowboys’ defense on Tuesday, as Dallas has also re-signed safety Donovan Wilson and acquired Stephon Gilmore from the Colts for a fifth-round pick. Wilson and Vander Esch were the Cowboys’ top two tacklers in 2022.