Ealy spent the 2017 season with the New York Jets, who claimed him off waivers after the New England Patriots cut him loose in late August. New England had acquired the former second-round pick from the Carolina Panthersin an offseason trade in 2017, but coach Bill Belichick told reporters upon Ealy's release the pairing just "didn't work out."
Free to determine his next destination, Ealy chose Dallas over a return to Todd Bowles' team. He'll join a unit that includes Demarcus Lawrence, Tyrone Crawford, David Irving and 2017 first-round pick Taco Charlton. What was once a serious need for the Cowboys has started to look more like a potential strength, should Charlton improve in Year 2 and Ealy play more like his Carolina form.