Up front, I am confident in the defensive line group, inclusive of:
Take a line off the opposing center and draw it straight back through the Dallas defense through the secondary. That straight line has to show a defineable upgrade over time.
That line includes the two defensive ends and nose tackle upfront. It next includes the two middle linebackers. And then finally, it involves the pair of safeties at the umbrella for the defense.
Spears, Hatcher, Coleman, Ratliff, and Brent.
In the middle, I do like James, Lee, and Carter.
At safety, I like the presence of Sensabaugh, Elam, and Church.
Hey, collectively, they might not bench many All Pros...but as a group, they are solid up the gut. And in a Rob Ryan defense, where he takes advantage of the skillset group...off the corner and outside, the team is very well stocked.
I'm not at a loss when considering how this group will then be used:
DeMarcus Ware, Anthony Spencer, and Victor Butler
As to the corners, that group has the ability set to shine as well:
Terrence Newman, Mike Jenkins, and Orlando Scandrick
My addition to evaluations of individual play for, say an Igor Olshansky, is that the group on the Dallas defense should be well positioned for a supportive role in working with the offense this season. For shorter periods, it may even prove to be dominant as well...as it is a pretty solid group as it exists, even now. As teams should be forced to gameplan to move things outside, and into the real jaws of the Ryan defensive scheme.