State of the Cowboys

Discussion in 'Draft Zone' started by jterrell, Apr 27, 2012.

  1. jterrell

    jterrell Penguinite

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    I wanted to create an article about the overall team and how this draft should be directed. Something we do in snippets more nowadays than as a whole.

    But reading work by SDogo, CS, Wulf and others that was more complete brought be back to the reality of the value in complete thoughts.

    Recap: Dallas was 8-8 and bad when it mattered last year. BUT that was last year. We don't hand in draft cards pretending everything is as it was while we watched Eli throw for 400 yards.

    Breaking down positions of interest.
    S --- Dallas likes Sensabaugh. He is a solid tackling safety who reads plays decently and covers ground. He isn't an elite player but he is a plus Safety.
    The key is what you put next to him. If you put an in the box guy next to him and ask him to just play center-field or cover TEs you reduce his effect on games. Enter stop gap Brodney Pool. Pool is a poor run player but has good coverage ability. He isn't a big play maker but takes his guy out of plays with coverage frequently. He can cover the NFCE TEs but won't do much else. You'd prefer him as a nickel coverage safety. This is a team need for sure.

    OG --- Dallas was bad last year across the interior. Holland was actually more than respectable but he can't be counted on to stay in shape or play 16 games. So he's gone and the young pups were often physically overmatched. Enter Bern and Livings. These guys have the physical tools you want. We can argue metrics all day but Livings played top flight DL very well in head to head match ups. He was not good on the move and struggled if having to reach for guys. Bern was a spot starter but showed plus play at both OG and OC. Dallas would welcome an upgrade at OG but don't need to force one. They have hired legit starters and have solid prospects behind them. Nagy and Arkin are very solid technicians who needed NFL strength and experience.

    OC --- Kosta started well and proved a capable pulling OC. But he was never able to stand up against a bull rush. He was on his butt far too often. And as he took a beating he seemed to lose the ability to fight. Kowalski was never a physical OC but he did fight. Dallas would LOVE an upgrade at OC where they ranked about bottom of the barrel. But also expect some of that to happen via training.

    OLB --- No sense re-hashing Spencer debates but Dallas would like to get more for what he will cost. In the mean time they'll check the draft for potential part-time pass rushers with versatility to play the SOLB spot. Also don't be surprised if they look at some still available free agents. This spot isn't settled.

    CB --- TNew simply had to go. He did a good overall job here but his play was deteriorating rapidly. Injuries effected him mentally to where he wasn't the same guy. Jenkins is a true physical talent but he lacks ideal size and has a smallish frame. Scandrick isn't a great coverage guy. He battles as well as almost anyone but allows too many catches and makes far too few plays. In comes Carr and Claiborne to change the landscape. Dallas no longer needs multiple CBs in this draft.

    FB --- We had great success last year with a healthy Fiametta but his issues were re-curing and impossible to predict. Dallas got an upgrade in Vickers and someone they can count on when games most need winning.

    TE --- Losing Bennett isn't a bad deal IF we get Vickers on the field a lot more. Phillips is a question mark after injuries but outplayed Marty B two years ago. Dallas would really like a 2nd TE out of this draft that could eventually replace Witten.

    DT/NT --- Ratliff can't play 75% of the snaps at NT. He needs rest and possibly some flexing out to DE at times. Players relying on explosion age faster than anyone else. That's why CBs/RBs fall off of cliffs.

    ILB --- Dallas added Connor to rather put this spot to bed. Carter is great in coverage and on special teams while Lee is a top 5 ILB.

    DE/Quick DT --- Hatcher is closest thing we have and this is a huge area of need. Guys are hard to find and cost so much when you do. Think the draft will bring another DL along here. With Geathers, Lissemore and others they hope to hit on a Ratliff type.

    WR --- Once we lost Robinson WR became a concern. Dallas has done well to develop outside WR threats. They haven't done much to get those quick short yardage magnets a la Terry Glenn. Dallas still seems to favor big, athletic WRs in this draft though. I don't know that a Ryan Broyles can beat out Andre Holmes. I'd rather see a quick guy with a more unique to our roster skillset brought in.

    The main thing for me is the arrow is pointing up.
    I believe Philly showed the last month they will be very tough to beat next year. I also realize the Giants are the defending Champs.
    So picking us 3rd again makes sense... But Dallas will have a better coaching staff than last year, lost only Laurent Robinson of any real value and gained huge pieces with Carr and Claiborne. I think the NFCE will be vastly improved but again a dog fight.

    As we look to the rest of this draft let's ask who we'd want to take into Philly and play with. We still need help for the upcoming season but have ammo to go get it.

    After the draft expect Dallas to speak with Spencer's agent again. The demands may have changed for a long-term deal after the draft when more teams have 3-4 OLBs on their rosters. It would cost Dallas a decent bonus but it could free up 5 mil or so day 1. 5 mil in cap space can get you a starter just about anywhere but QB. And there are some guys left.
  2. Wulfman

    Wulfman Unofficial GM

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    Nice read, JT, and I agree pretty much across the board. I think as much as they'd like to get that TE and WR, they have to be looking DL and C as much as anywhere. So those are the four areas I think they'll be targeting tonight and early tomorrow.

    And I said it in my article, I'll be more surprised to see Spencer leave next year than to see him sign a long-term deal before then. At this point, based on what the Cowboys have said, I think the OLB who is most likely to be playing for another team next year is Victor Butler.
  3. JackWagon

    JackWagon Well-Known Member

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    Still dont have a safety that i would consider a replacement for Woodsen. DE/DT other than Ratliff is pathetic. Would like a OLB better than spencer (pass rushing) but i dunno if we will find one. Center is still sad ... but i think we will get blake (RG3 likes this guy a lot) in this draft. Personally i still think we need a 2nd and 3rd WR ... Robinson is gone and Bryant is a disaster waiting to happen and hasnt shown 1st round WR production and this is year 3 he either shows up this year and explodes or you realease him after his contract.
  4. Idgit

    Idgit That sounds really boring Staff Member

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    This is pretty much exactly how I feel about this team.

    I don't think Poole is a legitimate starter, and, like you, believe we've got to have better OC play and it likely has to come from the draft.

    I also think a deal for Spencer probably gets hammered out right after the draft. We'll see.

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