Final Exam: Find a short-term free agent

Last season, the Cowboys signed linebacker Justin Durant and safety Will Allen as short-term solutions at key positions for the defense.

This offseason, with little money to use for free agents, the Cowboys won't become big players on the market, but it doesn't mean they can't dip their toes in the big pool.

Finding a veteran at wide receiver, especially if the Cowboys cut Miles Austin, to team with Dez Bryant and the rising Terrance Williams and Cole Beasley might be a smart play.

You might ask: Why not offer Austin a pay cut to bring him back? Why should the Cowboys allow themselves to deal with Austin's constant hamstring problems for another season when they could possibly get Jerome Simpson, Jerricho Cotchery or Robert Meachem?

The defensive and offensive lines need youth and you get that in the draft.

However, the Cowboys could improve their poor defense at the safety position by adding, yes another veteran.

Allen was released in early October so the team could push J.J. Wilcox into the starting lineup and after he recovered from a knee injury he just wasn't the same. Wilcox's replacement, Jeff Heath, had a better command of the defensive scheme, but just didn't make enough plays on the ball. The Cowboys should have kept Allen around seeing what happened in 2013.

This spring, signing a veteran such as Ryan Mundy or Ryan Clark, and keeping them the entire season as insurance should be in the plans. The Cowboys had some issues at cornerback with the health of Morris Claiborne (missed six games) and ineffective play by Brandon Carr.

Rookie B.W. Webb failed to replace Claiborne in the slot with his poor play and the team had to re-sign Sterling Moore, who was released prior to the season. To protect yourself if Webb struggles again and Claiborne doesn't improve his play, getting veteran such as Quentin Jammer could be the solution.

Of course, bringing Moore back to the team might prove to be cheaper than trying to sign Jammer.

The Cowboys have issues with their roster and their small amount of free-agent money doesn't help in their process to upgrade it. So they're no guarantees the Cowboys will get something done in free agency, at least not with a big name, but with a veteran who could sign on the cheap.