IRVING, Texas – Part 2 of the Dallas Cowboys’ Twitter mailbag is ready.
In it we discuss:
Away we go:Tyron Smith signed through 2020, so they are set there. They hold fifth-year options on Travis Frederick and Zack Martin, so they are good through 2017 and 2018. They can use the franchise tag on either player for a year if necessary. La'el Collins is signed through 2017 and the Cowboys control his rights through 2018 with the restricted-free-agent tender. The salary cap is going up every year, so they will also have that on their side. It will be tricky, but the Cowboys could be in a position by 2018 where they don't have Tony Romo's contract on the books and they are paying a quarterback on a rookie contract. That, maybe more than anything, will open up cap dollars to the linemen as well. I wouldn't bet against the Cowboys figuring something out in how they stagger the deals going forward, but it's not impossible to keep all of them on a second contract.
Shaun Hill and Matt Schaub, but did not want to make the type of financial commitment they did to Brad Johnson, Jon Kitna and Kyle Orton earlier on in Romo's career. Some have asked me if the Cowboys would go after Michael Vick or Brady Quinn. Why? The Cowboys appear ready to go with Brandon Weeden again. Is it a gamble considering Romo's back? Sure, but the New England Patriots, Denver Broncos and New Orleans Saints are taking similar chances with untested quarterbacks. You can't have it all.
Darren McFadden or Joseph Randle. He has to knock out the champ, so to speak. Maybe he will. But I do think it's telling that Gary Brown didn't initially mention him when talking about the runners, Stephen Jones called him Ryan Mathews and Jerry Jones always talks about his pass protection. Again, he will have a chance to earn a spot, but I don't know how anybody sees him jumping up the depth chart at this time of the offseason.
Tyrone Crawford will be a cornerstone piece on their defense at the three technique. They believe they have some other players who can fill in there as well. As for the nose tackle spot, they can go with a rotation of players there in Nick Hayden, Terrell McClain and Ken Bishop. I'm one of the few people who believe Hayden is fine at the spot. If you look at the Dallas D the last few years, the run defense hasn't been too problematic.
Dez Bryant doesn't report to the organized team activities or minicamp, Street will get to work with the first team on the outside. Clearly the Cowboys like what he can do. He was active every game as a rookie even though he didn't really get many looks. I do wonder if he does one thing great or a lot of things pretty good. The Cowboys have talked up their undrafted rookie receivers such as George Farmer, Antwan Goodley and Lucky Whitehead. In a perfect world, the Cowboys will keep five receivers on the 53-man roster. But they could look at six depending on what they see this summer.