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Todd Archer article trifecta

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Todd Archer has been putting pen to paper over the past few days and cranked out three articles over at the DMN.

Let's take a look:

Archer doesn't sound convinced that Larry Allen will be back with Dallas this year. It's food for thought, if they have a good target in mind (LeCharles Bentley anyone?) to replace him. They are going to discuss restructuring his contract, but the Cowboys haven't contacted Allen's agent, leaving the door open for speculation. Money quote:

On April 1, Larry Allen is due a roster bonus of $2 million, and the most decorated offensive lineman in team history is scheduled to count $7.55 million against the 2006 salary cap.


"Right now he has a contract. He intends to honor it, and I'm sure between now and April 1, I'll have discussions with the appropriate people," Demoff [Allen's agent] said. "Larry's been there the last two years and done everything asked of him. He's made the Pro Bowl. He's not been a bad player. If they want to sign someone else instead of Larry and release him, he'll end up playing somewhere else. Players have only so many options."

Next, Archer takes a look into the future and reminds us that Jason Witten will be a free agent after this year (sub. required) so we should lock him up soon. From the article:

With the new CBA, Witten can become an unrestricted free agent after the 2006 season.


With the 2006 salary cap at $102 million and next year's cap set at $109 million, the Cowboys certainly will have the room to make Witten one of the highest paid tight ends.

Once the Cowboys get through the initial phase of free agency in the next month or so they would be wise to begin their move in earnest to lock up Witten.

Finally, Archer plays everyone's favorite game and takes a shot at potential free agents for Dallas (sub. required).


That leaves Green Bay's Ryan Longwell and Tampa Bay's Matt Bryant. Longwell has kicked in bad weather in Green Bay but is coming off a down year.


Jacksonville's Akin Ayodele, an Irving MacArthur product, can play either outside linebacker spot and has decent pass-rush abilities - he played defensive end at Purdue.


Veteran Corey Chavous of Minnesota could be the best immediate help if the Cowboys look in the draft for a longer-term answer. Houston's Marcus Coleman is an option. He played for Parcells in New York and is represented by Jimmy Sexton, who is the agent for Parcells and a number of players.


...but Detroit's Kyle Kosier and New England's Steve Neal remain. How the Cowboys approach the guard position could determine Allen's future.


The Cowboys have done little to retain Dan Campbell and could look for another blocking tight end, highlighted by San Diego's Justin Peelle and Seattle' Ryan Hannam.