Defensive line a Cowboys strength? - Todd Archer, ESPN Dallas
In his 5 Wonders column, Todd Archer wonders about a few things, but the one that caught my eye was where Archer re-evaluates his previous stance on the defensive line and ruminates about its potential quality:
"I was the first person to kind of chuckle when I heard the Cowboys go on forever about the defensive line being their strength, but I wonder if it will be. Seriously. I don’t want to get too carried away and I want to see the work in the preseason against other teams, but there looks to be quality depth with guys like Tyrone Crawford, Sean Lissemore, Kyle Wilber and Ben Bass. Heck, I even had Nick Hayden on my most recent 53-man roster projection."
"The key will be Jay Ratliff and if he can find the form that led him to the Pro Bowls. He didn’t practice much this offseason, but when he did, he did a nice job. Same with Jason Hatcher. Add that to a healthy DeMarcus Ware and Spencer and there might be something here."
Roger Staubach: Cowboys are 'lucky' to have a 'championship' QB like Tony Romo - DMN
In a transcript of an interview Roger Staubauch had with 105.3 The Fan last week, Staubach outs himself as a Romo fan:
“I’m a Tony Romo fan. Obviously there are people that are right with me and others that say Roger, you know. Well, I just look at it. I just have a feel. I had a feel when Troy Aikman came to this team. That’s the first time I had a feel other than when Danny White left. Danny White was a really good quarterback by the way, and I don’t think we had a quarterback again that walked onto the field, you said, "Hey, we’re going to win this game," until Troy Aikman. Troy Aikman was phenomenal."
"I think Tony Romo is a championship quarterback. He can take a team to a championship. He can’t do it by himself, but I really believe he can do it. I just see what he does on the field, the plays he makes, the throws he makes, the sense that he has to move in the pocket so I’m pulling really hard for Tony because I really believe he is one heck of a quarterback, and that’s a feeling from somebody that I didn’t say that about any other quarterbacks except for Troy Aikman. I think Tony is the right quarterback, and we’re lucky to have Tony Romo.”
We'll use Staubach's statement as a convenient excuse to post a Tony Romo highlight video that BTB member Audrate put together. Football can't be here soon enough.
Lee Would Love To Stay A Cowboy, But Focus Is On Present - Rowan Kavner, DallasCowboys.com
There’s plenty of talk surrounding Sean Lee’s upcoming contract year. The fourth-year linebacker isn’t worrying about any of that, as he prepares to play healthy and stay healthy in 2013.
Extending Early or Waiting Until Free Agency Begins? - Over the Cap
Over The Cap takes a look at some of the things that should be considered when weighing the option of extending a young player early or letting him play out his contract and dealing with him as he is ready to enter free agency.
Dallas Cowboys among divisional threats - NFL.com
Elliot Harrison runs through the NFL to find potential challengers to last season's eight division champions, and thinks the Cowboys are the likeliest threat in the NFC East. How it can happen:
» It starts with a bit of redundancy: create more turnovers. Can't hammer this home enough. In 2012, Dallas finished tied for 28th with 16. Washington had 31. Think about that.
» The offensive line can't play any worse than it did last year. Subtle improvement, starting with the arrival of first-round draft pick Travis Frederick, could go a long way.
» Everyone I've spoken with thinks Murray is a special talent. However, a player's best ability is his availability, and Murray hasn't been -- available, that is.
As franchise tag deadline nears, don't expect a lot of deals - CBSSports.com
The franchise tag deadline looms for a number of NFL players, chief among them Anthony Spencer. Jason LaConfora writes that out of all the franchise-tagged players, Anthony Spencer looks like the most likely to get a deal done in time.
"Jerry Jones is as about as generous as it gets when it comes to taking care of his own players, generally, to a fault. [... The Cowboys and Spencer] have been exchanging proposals for quite some time, according to sources. It would be silly to let him walk should Spencer maintain his 2012 form, and talks have been cordial and productive, according to sources. While it would be a stretch to say they're close to a deal, there has been enough momentum to conclude this could get resolved by the deadline next month."
Is Dez Bryant ready to be the face of the Dallas Cowboys? - Mat Mosley, FoxSportsSouthWest.com
Dez Bryant has been making dramatic steps to improve his image off the field this year, but is it enough to become the face of the Cowboys? Like Dan Graziano a day earlier, Mosley says the next four weeks (Graziano said five, but who's counting?) leading up to Dallas Cowboys training camp are just as important for Bryant as anything that will happen on the field this season.
Dan Bailey aims to improve leg strength, learn from past experience -- good and bad - Carlos Mendez, Star-Telegram
Dan Bailey said he spent a lot of time in the weight room this spring to add leg strength. But that's just one part of his game he's been working on. He's also been working on accuracy and the mental side of kicking.
The magic number is 50 - National Football Post
According to the NFP, teams averaging a combined total of 50 rushing attempts and completions per game have a good chance of producing a winning season.
If you're nodding your head right now, you shouldn't, because the statement above is akin to saying teams that score a lot win a lot. Or that temperatures tend to be higher in the summer than in the winter. Anybody want to write a rebuttal? I see that Chase Stuart is raising his hand. Take it away, Chase.
Mike Lombardi Cracks the Code to Winning in the NFL - Chase Stuart, FootballPerspective.com
After reading the NFP article, in which Joe Fortenbaugh canonized Mike Lombardi for discovering one of the game’s "great hidden stats", Stuart produces a whole list of "great hidden stats" that are even more closely correlated with wins in the NFL.
His key finding: Teams need to kneel down more in the second half. After all, teams that do that win 98% of the time.