FanPost

Forward Thinking Vol IV - The Offseason

Hello again, Cowboys’ Nation! Finding a new angle to cover for this piece will be difficult. Going to cover my wants and logic for this offseason, which I’ve beaten into the ground via comments, and see if anything else comes out that makes this thing postable.

Here is Rotoworld’s latest FA list. And that actually matters because Free Agency will happen this season. Prost!

Free Agency moves

Offense – Pick up a high-level C, and by high level I mean that if we make a splash, it should be at C. Our O-line staff right now is full of prospects that fit very well at G, and can fill time at C or OT if needed. Picking up a great communicator and anchor changes the face of our offense and gives our youngsters a true C to learn from. Resign Holland and Robinson if they can be kept for non-starter money, so no franchising our third WR when we have Harris ready for next season. Signing Fiammetta should be a priority. If we can’t keep him, pick up Michael Robinson. He’s been in the league a few years, was a team captain for Seattle and made his first PB this year, plus he is a RKG.

Defense - First off, Keep Anthony. Do not franchise him for $9 Mil a year, but locking him up for four years @ $5.5 Mil a year in the prime of his career is a steal. Looking at the staff on our front seven, we are a true NT away from a very solid line (sacks are not their job, but interior push is missing,). If we don’t make a splash at C, this would be my second priority.

I prefer young, proven, solid FA corners to drafting CBs, but they will cost about $8-10 Mil a year each, so find a good CB and keep Ball for now. I would keep Elam if no one that is clearly better comes along on the cheap, he has done almost exactly what we thought he would.

Overall I would say that is attainable: Keep Spencer, Fiammetta and pick up a Center. If no special Centers will jump onboard, sign a pass rushing D-Lineman. Keep McBriar on ST. Insert solid CB and S here.

Draft

I hope this is a defensive draft, and we are flush with young OG talent. That being said, I would not mind DeCastro in the first round. I see us trading back in the first round, and if we trade, I would not be surprised to see us trade for a player and a second/third round pick instead of another first and second/third rounder. My reasoning is that we have a lot of young talent on this team and we are going to get A LOT younger this offseason. It would be nice to secure two starters from this draft and it looks like we can get one in the first, second, then a CB like Jamell Fleming (who legitimately can push for a spot,) in the third. I would like to see us draft a QB, but I have no idea where the Cowboys staff sees any QBs as far as BPA…

Here is what the team will look like (posted on Becho's Rec'd fanpost originally,):

QB – Romo, McGee, Nick Foles or Kellen Moore (3rd,)
RB – Murray, Jones, Tanner
FB – Fiammetta

WR - Bryant, Austin, Robinson, Holley, Harris
OL – Smith, Free, ArkIn, Nagy, Kowalski, Costa, Parnell Chris Meyers (That’s right! Steal him from Houston! Durable zone blocker, going into eighth season, but has little wear and tear. If no Meyers, Scott Wells from GB.) Decastro (1st,)
TE – Witten, Phillips, Micheal Egnew (5th,)
ST – Bailey, McBriar, Holley (Forbath?)
DL – Rat, Brent, Hatcher, Spears, Poe (2nd,)
LB – Ware, Butler, Lee, Carter, Lemon, Spencer
CB – Jenkins, Scandrick, Ball, Cletis Gordon (Bring him back, FA from CAR,) Jamell Fleming (4th,)
S – Sensi, Elam

Other offseason thoughts

Expounding on an earlier thought that I have not heard talked about, our team is going to be YOUNG next year! Jeez, we are losing TNew, Brooking, James, and like it or not, Kosier. Romo, Ware and Witten will officially be elder statesmen on the team, and about %75 of our game day roster will have 5 years or less experience, most likely. Also, we are likely to have 8-10 starters in the first three seasons of their careers. Not game experience, of their careers.

I would be surprised to see our vets traded. Our 6+ year guys (only 14 of them likely to be on roster,) are solid or key contributors. This actually makes me really happy at the way our franchise is trending. To go through a season like ’10 without a tangible shift from the old regime would be a bad sign. Our leaders are now clearly the players we as fans envision leading.

Our LB corps is going to come together next year. Look for it to be a true strength of our team for the first time since...When was the last time we had four truly talented LBs on the field at once? Anyway, they will be better than they have been, along with our secondary. We may go through transition growing pains in secondary next year, like O-line this year, but it will be worth it in the long run. Going to start next season with more talent than we had at any point this year.

If we are not immediately active and aggressive in free agency, I think I’m going to spontaneously combust and shoot fire from my eye sockets. I am not calling for a splash, I just want solid players signed. Actually signed… By our team.

The biggest bright spot I foresee is the evolution of our training and coaching staffs. Coach Ryan outcoached himself at times last year. Coach Garrett made rookie coaching mistakes like constantly shifting formations during two minute drills. We completed our coaching staff with legitimately talented, respected people. Coach Woicik has a full offseason to work magic. I truly believe the casual fan and our opponents are going to be shocked at the difference in our team’s strength and durability next season.

Coaches Garrett and Ryan’s respective games are going to get a chance to evolve with one another. Since the 46 Defense and Air Coryell offense evolved together, and Ryan is unorthodox, I truly expect to see some angles, stunts and pulls not normally seen in the pro game. I touched on this last offseason, but we did not really get a chance to see it last year.

Stupid penalties will continue to drop. Discipline and team cohesion will rise. I expect to see some dogs emerge on offense and defense.

Dwayne Harris will make the squad. It seems like he is not getting much love around here.

Early Prediction

After falling on my face with my ’10 prediction, I did not make any predictions last year. My superstition did us no good, so I’ll put myself out there. Over under on wins I’d put at ten, NFC East wins I’d put at 4, playoff berth EVEN, SB appearance 5-1 *Edit, weighing NFC only.

Yeah, I like the team, so sue me! We were not far this year!

Don’t forget, tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. Get to the flower shop or something.

Another user-created commentary provided by a BTB reader.

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