Dallas Cowboys News & Notes: Up To 10 Defensive Linemen For The Cowboys?

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Latest Cowboys headlines: Why Sean Lee's injury isn't the end of the world for the Cowboys; Why the Cowboys should give Bruce Carter a shot to replace Sean Lee at MLB; Why Jeremy Mincey took a tour of AT&T Stadium with the fans.

10 Defensive Linemen for the Cowboys? - Todd Archer, ESPN Dallas
Todd Archer answers a reader question and suggests, with all the necessary caveats, that the Cowboys could go with 10 defensive linemen this year (they opened the 2013 season with 10 players too, and had Ratliff on PUP).

They go with 10 with Anthony Spencer opening the season on the physically unable to perform list. Don't ask me about what the other spots look like to fit in 10 defensive linemen, but here are my picks: Henry Melton, George Selvie, Jeremy Mincey, Terrell McClain, Tyrone Crawford, DeMarcus Lawrence, Ben Gardner, Ken Bishop, Nick Hayden and Davon Coleman. That's four defensive ends and Crawford as a hybrid between the two spots. There are guys who can play the nose and the three as well. I'm not sure this group scares any offenses just yet, though.

Here's what the opening-day rosters of the previous years looked like as documented in the NFL gamebooks.

Scheme 4-3 3-4
Years 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006
Quarterback 2 2 3 3 3 2 2 2
Running Back 4 3 4 3 3 3 3 3
Wide Receiver 5 6 6 5 5 5 6 6
Tight End 4 4 4 2 3 3 3 3
Fullback - - 1 - - 2 1 1 2 1
Offensive Line 10 9 9 10 10 11 10 9
Defensive Line 10 7 7 7 6 6 6 7
Linebackers 6 8 7 9 9 8 8 9
Defensive Backs 9 10 9 9 9 11 10 9
of which: CB 4 5 5 3 4 7 5 5
of which: S 5 5 4 6 5 4 5 4
Specialists 3 3 4 3 4 3 3 4

Gosselin: Why Sean Lee's injury isn't the end of the world for the Cowboys | Rick Gosselin, DMN
Gosselin writes that the middle linebacker has always been a replaceable part in the Tampa 2 defensive scheme, while the difference-making positions are the weakside linebacker, the three-technique and safety. Gosselin argues that the Cowboys have options in the middle with DeVonte Holloman and Anthony Hitchens, but that their real issue is the weakside linebacker - which is why they were so high on Ryan Shazier in the draft.

Sherrington: Why the Cowboys should give Bruce Carter a shot to replace Sean Lee at MLB | DMN
I wonder what Rick Gosselin thinks about this: Kevin Sherrington makes a push for Bruce Carter at MLB.

I believe what they should do is put Bruce Carter back there. You don't like him at weakside linebacker as it is. When Rob Ryan was here, he started 10 games at middle linebacker when Sean Lee was out. He did very well. I think they should try it again. It's very clear that Rod Marinelli does not like Bruce Carter at this point. To me, if this guy has experience playing middle linebacker and he does have more talent than these other guys we're talking about, let's see if he can play this.

Cowboys DE Jeremy Mincey on taking a tour of AT&T Stadium with the fans | DMN
Mincey, who grew up in Georgia, is a longtime fan of the Cowboys, and getting the opportunity to play in Dallas is something of a dream come true for the eight-year veteran.

"Oh yeah, I'm blessed and I'm fortunate to be in a great situation here in Dallas. I grew up a Cowboy. I was always a fan of the Cowboys and now I'm here playing with them. Proud to have the opportunity to represent a great organization," Mincey said.

So it doesn't come as a big surprise to see that Mincey wanted to get a look at AT&T Stadium. What is a little surprising is that he took the regular stadium tour with his family:

"I actually took my family on a family tour. I had to do it. … I went in there and I was just humble. I didn’t tell anybody I played ball or anything, until I saw my name actually on the locker when we did the tour through the locker room and I was like, ‘Aw, crap.’ We started taking pictures in front of the locker. People started kind of doing the math and before you know it, I was taking pictures the whole day."

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Early entry into draft costly for some - San Antonio Express-News
This report by AP writer Barry Wilner looks at the plight of 39 underclassmen who went undrafted out of the record 102 underclassmen who declared for the draft, and quotes player agent Ben Dogra, who wonders who is advising these players.

"For that many to declare early and not get drafted, those are staggering numbers," Dogra said. "We understand why some apply: They don't feel they can handle the academics, or there are injury concerns, or maybe there's a situation with the coaching staff.

"Often, the input they get comes from agents. If you are not getting that input, like some of the players say, the only other place probably is from draft sites and the internet and the media. That's not going to be reliable information."

Shorter NFL offseason, restrictions hamper coaches - ESPN
ESPN's Ashley Fox writes that a shorter offseason leads to less time for coaches to teach and that it's time for the NFL and NFLPA to come up with a system than benefits everyone.

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New York Giants Realize They Signed Josh Freeman, Release Him - Daily Norseman
And, after coming to grips with what they'd done, released him.

Mark Sanchez says he’s "just entering the prime of my career" | ProFootballTalk
I was going to write something witty here, but I was laughing so hard I had trouble typing anything.

Washington Redskins Fail The Twitter Test With Football Fans And Followers | Techdirt
The team's Twitter account put out a call for fans to tweet Senator Harry Reid explaining why the team's name apparently means so much to them, for some reason. Fans of the team or not, the response was the exact opposite of the team's intention, with the overwhelming majority of respondents favoring the name change and offering their support to Reid, not the team.

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