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Cutting-Room Floor : Roper Released After Snoozing During Film

From Associated Press

Linebacker John Roper discovered Monday that taking a nap during film sessions can be fatal to employment with the Dallas Cowboys.

Coach Jimmy Johnson cut the fifth-year linebacker from Texas A&M;, who was obtained from Chicago in a preseason trade.

Roper, who had drawn praise from Johnson for his effort in previous games, was put on the inactive list for Sunday’s 26-17 victory over the San Francisco 49ers.

Johnson caught Roper asleep during a special teams meeting Friday. “John didn’t fit in,” Johnson said. “He’s a good football player and has the ability to make plays, but we expect certain things from our players. The chemistry on this team is very important.”

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Roper, Markus Paul and Kelly Blackwell came to the Cowboys in exchange for Vinson Smith, Barry Minter and a late-round draft choice. “I guess Chicago got the best of the trade,” Johnson said. “Vinson Smith is starting and (Bear Coach) Dave Wannstedt is happy. We get a minus on this one.”

Last season, Johnson cut running back Curvin Richards for fumbling twice during a game.


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