I have been reading this blog for years now (more than 1 but less than 3) and have thoroughly enjoyed everyone's opinions, even if I vehemently disagree with them! I figured it was time for me to put my opinion out there in the form of a post covering (not in depth!) the draft and the veterans to the front office to wherever I decide to go with this.
I loved this draft, for once it didn't feel overly flashy and any big high risk high reward players "reached" for. The Frederick pick was something a lot of people were hoping would happen in the second or third round, but you cannot tell me Frederick and T.Williams are not superior players combined than a Justin Pugh
or Eric Reid
selection? Center is an incredibly important position to an offense, it sets the line up and communicates with the quarterback on protection and blocking. And as I am sure all of you have, watching the highlights of him just blowing up DT's left and right has left me feeling really good, 40 time be damned! The Escobar pick is intriguing because it clearly sets this draft up as a pro-offense/Romo draft. Romo needs more weapons in the red zone if we are going to win more than 8 games. I love Dan Bailey
but FG's don't win games in this league, TD's do. As previously mentioned I love adding a big athletic WR in the 3rd as well as the highest ceiling safety in the draft. Wilcox flies to the ball and either intercepts it or blows the receiver/rb up. Webb it sounds like almost has the slot corner position wrapped up, pun intended, which will save us money in the future (scandrick) as well as be an upgrade. Now the biggest value pick in this draft is arguably Randle. He can flat out play, and allow us to spell Murray, or heaven forbid Murray goes down with injury, can fill in and have the machine keep moving. He runs with power, speed and some nastiness to get the extra yards. Holloman is a project that should pay dividends down the road when he gets more time in the weightroom and learns from Lee/Carter. A converted safety to LB can be a great asset, especially when your defense is predicated on speed.
I like a lot of the UDFA but will withhold analysis until I am sure who is on the roster and who is not (Kendial is almost a lock, but who knows!).
Front Office / Coaches / Vets
I am not the biggest fan of JJ or JG for that matter, but I am starting to see what they are trying to accomplish. JJ is trying to make this a better offensive team while bringing in coaches to make an already solid defense great. Adding weapons to Tony Romo
will definitely improve this offense, but my concern is if we have done enough to the OL to truly get the best performance out of these weapons. Frederick will be an instant anchor, and I believe Leary, Livings, MackB, Costa or Arkin/Kowalski will be able to improve on last years guard play. My main concern is with RT, will Free play with the better technique we have heard about or is Parnell really ready to step up? If Free takes the pay cut, and gets hungry again, I believe he can be the answer to that question. A hungry Free is a great asset and would instantly be a huge upgrade over the fat and happy Free of the past 2 years. Having grown up in Central Florida and watching a lot of TB games, I can tell you that our defense is going to be a lot of fun to watch. We already have better players than any TB defense had and will be showing up on a lot of highlight reels this fall. The only questions on defense is safety, I believe we will be playing with a mixture of Church and either Johnson or Wilcox. Church is a starting caliber safety that can become a difference maker with experience and coaching. Johnson and Wilcox are too green for me to say with any certainty what they will bring to the table, but with competition cream will rise to the top.
For all of these reasons I believe the Cowboys
will win a very competitive BEAST and will make a strong push into the playoffs. The only thing that will truly save us or sink us will be the continued development of our younger players as well as the ability of the defense to adapt to the new scheme. Injuries obviously can ruin a season before it starts but with our added depth and next man up mentality, we should be able to continue to produce unless some of our biggest stars go down.
I foresee a 11-5 record if things go well and a deep playoff push, the homer in me says SUPER BOWL!!!! (no major injuries and minor development from younger players) to a potential 9-7 record if we run into the aformentioned problems.
No doubt our team is improved and no doubt it will (finally) show up on the field.
Another user-created commentary provided by a BTB reader.