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NFC East looking tough this year

The author of this article thinks this year's NFC East could be among the strongest divisions ever. He breaks down each team then hits some historical highlights of really tough divisions from the past.

On Dallas:

Dallas made the biggest offseason splash in the league by signing Owens to give the offense the No. 1 receiving threat it has lacked, and short-timer Bill Parcells didn't ignore the defense either. Linebackers Akin Ayodele, a free agent acquisition from Jacksonville, and Bobby Carpenter, a first-round draft choice out of Ohio State, will provide the defense the two big, run- stopping linebackers that have always been a major part of Parcells' blueprint for success.

QB Jeff Mroz gets some ink today from Todd Archer in a DMN article (sub. required). With the Cowboys QB roster pretty much set, Mroz has to hope he can land on the practice quad.

Making the Cowboys' roster will be difficult. Bledsoe is the clear starter. Romo and Henson have had turns as the backup the last two years and have much more experience. With other roster considerations, it's hard to imagine Bill Parcells carrying four quarterbacks.

But there is hope. Practice squads were expanded from five to eight a year ago, and Mroz could be in for a redshirt-type season if he sticks. Plus, he worked with quarterbacks coach Chris Palmer before the draft.

As a senior, he threw for 2,484 yards with 22 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. That was enough to get him a look from a handful of teams after the draft. Because of his relationship with Palmer, he chose the Cowboys.

Gil Brandt says the supplemental draft is coming up and there are two players who could make a splash.

This years' supplemental draft is tentatively scheduled for July 13. Rules of the supplemental draft stipulate that it has to take place at least 10 days prior to opening of the first training camp.

Draft order is determined by a weighted system that is divided into three groupings. First come the teams that had six or fewer wins last season, followed by non-playoff teams that had more than six wins, followed by the 12 playoff teams.


The paperwork hasn't officially been filed yet for this year's supplemental draft, but there are at least two players who will get a close look from scouts around the league:

*    Ahmad Brooks, LB, Virginia: A national defensive player of the year coming out of high school, Brooks had an outstanding 2004 season for the Cavaliers in 2004, but got hurt last year.

*    Jason Berryman, DE, Iowa State: At about 240 pounds, he's probably a linebacker in a 3-4 scheme. His Pro Day is already set for June 6 at Iowa State, and we'll have reports on that.

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