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Sturm reviews FA CBs Carr and Finnegan

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Bob Sturm has a "2-part series, where we take a look at the two most likely candidates to be the Cowboys top target in free agency as they attempt to fix their cornerback issues." Here's The Case for Brandon Carr and The Case for Cortland Finnegan, based on spending the past several days watching hundreds of snaps of these two players, including some "full 22" tape where he could see what they're doing when they're not in the broadcast screen. His conclusion: "In my mind, after watching them both carefully, I give the edge to Carr for 3 reasons. His age (2 years younger), his size, and his superior cover skills in a press cover situation against another team's top wide out. Carr does not tackle or blitz like Finnegan, and he also does not possess those leadership intangibles. Of course, he will never get ejected for punching a player, either, if history is our guide. I love Finnegan's physical play, but I wonder if you can give a guy who plays like "every game is his last" can hold up physically at that size for 5 years at big money, too. "Either player will be a big acquisition that will improve this defense as the team moves on from Newman. I would think the Cowboys will negotiate with both to attempt to keep the prices in check by leveraging each against the other. But, if forced to choose, I would prefer to play even a little more to get the bigger Brandon Carr."

SportingNews - Ranking the top 25 NFL defensive backs (Newman, Williams, Hamlin & Jones)

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Dallas has four DBs in the top 25 on this list. Denver, Oakland, Philly and Green Bay each have two. No other team has more than 1. 11. Terence Newman, CB, Cowboys. Newman is an explosive athlete who shows great speed and agility. He can also be overaggressive in coverage but has the makeup speed to get back in position. He has learned to play with maturity and better technique. He also has become more of a playmaker with 8 interceptions and 144 tackles over the past two seasons. His improved coverage skills are the reason Anthony Henry sees so many balls come his way. 19. Roy Williams, S, Dallas Cowboys. Williams is a big, physical safety who is at his best playing close to the line of scrimmage. Although he's a big-time tackler and playmaker who can separate the ballcarriers from balls, he has always struggled in coverage, and teams are learning to exploit that weakness. Dallas has the depth in the secondary to use multiple personnel groups to try to hide Williams' deficiencies, but the fact remains he has become a nearly one-dimensional player, which is why he is so low on this list. 24. Adam Jones, CB, Dallas Cowboys. Jones is both physical and athletic, and plays bigger than his size. He can run with anyone, make big plays on the ball, and is a threat to score from anywhere on the field. The issue, of course, is that his body of NFL work is limited, as is his ability to make good decisions off the field. If his head is on straight, Jones has the skills to be one of the NFL's very best. 25. Ken Hamlin, S, Cowboys. Hamlin ranked in the top 10 in the league in passes defensed last season, and was fourth among safeties with five interceptions. He has great range and can track down many balls while playing in center field. Hamlin is at his best jumping routes in zone coverage, but he can also match up with both tight ends and slot wide receivers. He is a strong complement to Roy Williams and is the player who may best be able to keep Williams on the field. T-New should be higher on the list. Hamlin should be at least higher than Roy, and I think a lot of folks would not put Roy on the list at all. Jones makes the list even missing a season...

Breer: Adam Jones in top 10 players to watch in NFC training camps

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From Breer's new gig at SportingNews: "Cowboys CB Adam Jones. Romo caught flak, but the truth is it was Jacques Reeves who was victimized in last year's playoff loss more than anyone -- particularly on a game-turning two-minute drive at the end of the first half. All eyes will be on "Adam" in camp, and while some will focus on a battle with Anthony Henry for the right cornerback spot, the presence of both, plus Mike Jenkins, has owner/GM Jerry Jones thinking this could be the best crew of cornerbacks he has had in his 20 years in Dallas -- if Jones is reinstated, that is. The logjam is a nice issue to have."

Free Agents 2008: Cornerbacks

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The short list of cornerbacks expected to enter into free agency on February 29:Asante Samuel (Age 27) - New England; 6 INT, 18 passes def., 44 tackles (16 games) Nnambi Asomugha (Age 26) -...

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