I thought losing Robinson was a mistake. It's not that I lack confidence in Austin or Bryant. I think both of them have 80-catch, 1,300-yard potential. I'm also anxious to see what Holmes, Harris, and Radway can do.
The one thing that does worry me, though, is Austin's age and injury history. He'll be 28 at the start of next season. Sure, there is the occasional Jerry Rice or Terrell Owens playing well into their mid 30s, but those are the exceptions. Plus, Austin has a history of nagging injuries. That was the case again last year. Nagging injuries get harder and harder to heal as receivers get older. Nagging injuries can also occur more frequently.
And the question to ask is this: What if the Austin or Bryant gets injured and misses significant time next year? It's happened to both of them in their careers so it can happen again. Harris, Holmes or Radway getting serious time as a number two receiver? I hope not.
More after the jump.That's why I wonder if the Cowboys wouldn't be wise to grab a receiver early. I doubt a receiver worthy of pick 14 will be available when the Cowboys are on the clock. And certainly, there are bigger needs (pass rush and interior line would be my two highest priorities). And no, I'm not suggesting we move up in the first round.
But having a receiver step in and contribute as the number three immediately and be a viable option for replacing Austin in a couple of years isn't the worst idea. Plus, the Lions really increased the cost of franchising receivers. So having options in this area isn't a bad thing.
I was very high on Radway last year and was disappointed that he got hurt. It sounds like the Cowboys think Holmes can be somebody. Maybe Harris is the next Patrick Crayton. If the Cowboy braintrust doesn't believe one of those guys is a legitimate replacement for Bryant or Austin, then getting a receiver should take on more urgency in the draft. Of course, at this point, I trust the direction of this team. So it all comes down to what Garrett and company think of Radway, Holmes, and Harris (and I suppose Ogletree) and who might fall to them at different rounds.