The Cowboys can't "recruit'' Pacman Jones; they can't even speak to him without committing a tampering violation.
So instead, they're relying on the proactive work of the Unofficial President of the Dallas Cowboys Booster Club.
Jones, the troubled, talented and suspended Tennessee Titans cornerback/returner, is being coaxed and coached into joining the Cowboys by none other than Michael Irvin, the Hall-of-Fame Cowboy who is now a DFW talk-show host – and long a goodwill ambassador and unofficial recruiting coordinator for his former team.
Sources tell me that Irvin reached out to Jones a few days ago to offer advice on how Pacman should conduct himself as he seeks reinstatement from the NFL, on how he should conduct himself should be truly want to join the Cowboys, and -- most importantly, on how Jones should, in Irvin's opinion, sign with Dallas.
I am told that Irvin has expressed his thoughts on Pacman to Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, and that the player, suspended for assorted off-the-field behavioral issues, is the subject of Valley Ranch conversation.
Sources also tell me that Pacman will be in town on Monday night for a lengthy dinner meeting with Irvin. It will be at that meeting when Irvin plans to advise Pacman on life as a Cowboy.
That get-together will preceed the announced appearance of Pacman on Irvin's ESPN 103.3 radio show on Tuesday. Pacman will join Irvin on the air for the entirety of the 11-to-2 p.m. show.
This is not the first time that Michael Irvin has recruited talent to the Cowboys, and then taken a guidance-counselor position for a player. Most notably, Irvin was influencial in Terrell Owens coming to the Cowboys. Irvin's involvement -- again, completely unofficial -- is a clever entry through a loophole. Teams are not allowed to contact other teams' players. But Irvin isn't a Cowboy exec. ... he's just a "concerned fan.''
The Cowboys (along with other interested teams, a group rumored to include the Patriots) can trade for Jones even while he's ineligible to play. The NFL is planning to make a decision on his status for the 2008 season at some point prior to the opening of training camps. Tennessee would likely settle for a mid- or low-round draft pick in exchange for Jones, 24, the sixth overall pick in the 2005 Draft who has superstar talent that would come in handy for a Dallas team that is thin at corner behind Terence Newman.
Again, the Cowboys are not directly involved in any of this. The radio station is apparentl paying for the flight. Pacman is just eating dinner. And master recruiter Michael Irvin is simply electing himself the President of the Dallas Cowboys Booster Club.