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Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy takes shot at Micah Parsons for skipping OTAs

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Micah Parsons quickly became one of the best defensive players in football.

The 11th pick of the 2021 NFL Draft has finished in the top three in each of his three seasons for the Defensive Player of the Year Award, and he’s trying to get a new deal.

The common practice for players in his situation is to not touch the field until pen goes to paper.

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Micah Parsons of the Dallas Cowboys against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field Nov. 5, 2023, in Philadelphia. (Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)

And the Dallas Cowboys pass rusher has not taken the field at their practice complex.

Parsons was at the complex Wednesday, and head coach Mike McCarthy said Thursday Parsons has been there more than people realize. But he still threw a jab at his prized possession, saying Parsons is missing an “opportunity to improve.”

“I think anytime you have a chance to be together, it’s an opportunity to improve, whether it’s in the mental realm, the physical realm, which is limited obviously this time of year, and the emotional connection and so forth,” McCarthy said. “But, you know, it’s a long year. Training camp is really the heightened focus for all of that. But, yeah, it’s definitely an opportunity that’s been missed.”

Micah Parsons vs Lions

Dallas Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons (11) calls out defensive signals during a game against the Detroit Lions Dec. 30, 2023, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. (Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

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Shortly after Dallas lost in the wild-card round to the seventh-seeded Green Bay Packers, Parsons said he wanted to be more of a leader.

CeeDee Lamb is also absent because he is looking for a new deal after the best season of his four-year career.

Parsons has had 13, 13½ and 14 sacks his first three years. He made first-team All-Pro in 2021 and 2022 but slipped to the second-team last season. 

Micah Parsons fist pumps

Micah Parsons of the Dallas Cowboys reacts against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field Nov. 5, 2023, in Philadelphia.  (Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

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He finished behind T.J. Watt for the Defensive Player of the Year in 2021 and Nick Bosa in 2022, while falling behind Myles Garrett and Watt last season.

Amon-Ra St. Brown, DeVonta Smith and Nico Collins are the only players from the 2021 draft class to receive contract extensions.

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