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Cowboys need backup NT to emerge

While Jason Ferguson is having a good camp and may become the stud at NT the defense needs him to be, the fact is the Cowboys do not have a proven player backing him up. Last year, Ferguson went down with an ankle injury, but pro bowl La'Roi Glover was there to save the day and played well.

With Glover being released in March, the Cowboys need one of their young tackles, either Thomas "Pepper" Johnson or Montavious Stanley to emerge in case Ferguson goes down with an injury again.

Parcells believes Ferguson can anchor the Cowboys' defensive line this season. He's more concerned with who's playing behind him with Glover now a member of the St. Louis Rams.

Thomas "Pepper" Johnson is back for his second season after making the Cowboys' active roster last year as an undrafted free agent. The Cowboys also drafted Louisville defensive tackle Montavious Stanley in the sixth round this past April.

"I have two young kids here," Parcells said. "I've put some time in on this Pepper Johnson already and I want to see how he does. And then we drafted a kid, this Stanley.

"I am concerned about that position. I don't know who it's going to be yet. There's a chance we could even move someone in there from the end spot."

Hopefully Ferguson will step up his play this season and become a dominant force up the middle.  A 3-4 defense absolutely needs a very good NT to be successful. If Ferguson fails or gets hurt, one of these kids has to be ready to play, thats the bottom line.

Brad Sham thinks Anthony Fasano is a player and will contribute heavily this year.

 He ought to be further ahead than any other rookie," Parcells barked when asked at a daily news briefing about the progress of the Notre Dame grad. "I expect him to make a quick transition to pro football. He's in a little bit of information overload right now, but he couldn't ask for a better situation. He's playing the exact same position he played in college. Ninety per cent of the terminology is exactly the same." Parcells usually reserves this biting, sardonic tone for a player of whom he thinks a good deal and expects a lot.

Making a list of Fasano's attributes, scouting director Jeff Ireland begins with "ball skills. He knows how to catch the ball and he can get open. Number two, he's tough. He's aggressive and smart. And frankly, his knowledge of the system is a plus. In today's NFL, if you can get someone you can plug right in and have him be productive, that's important. We think he can be a weapon."

If this kid is the real deal, our offense will be extremely difficult to defend as teams will have to defend 5 outstanding receivers, not to mention MB3 out of the backfield. Well...that is if the offensive line plays well, but if they do, look out, the Cowboys should score in bunches.

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