Jason Witten Believes Tony Romo Will Come Back "Better Than Ever" - Gina Miller
Miller caught up with Witten at an Albertsons in Fort Worth, and got a few soundbites out of Witten on Tony Romo:
"He looks great and I'm excited to see where he is," Witten said with a smile. "People don't realize the will and kind of toughness he has. I think somewhere it got lost because we were playing Philadelphia but he played most the that game (the Washington game) with the back injury and won the game for us."
"He looks good. I see him running out there. It's always good to have him out there. I think he's gonna be better than ever and I'm excited for this season."
Chat leftovers: Will Gavin Escobar be the most improved player in 2014? - Todd Archer, ESPNDallas ESPN Dallas
Responding to a reader question, Archer explains why he thinks Escobar will be the team's most improved player in 2014.
I’m basing that on the belief he will play a lot more in 2014 than last season not because his blocking will be that much better. I think the Cowboys will use him and play to his strengths more. In other words, he’ll attack the seams and be a red-zone threat on occasion.
Witten Knows Cowboys Are Expected To Finish 8-8 Again - Nick Eatman, DallasCowboys.com
Witten believes that getting off to a good start to the season is vital, even more so in 2014, and that the groundwork for a successful December and January is laid in April and May.
"I think the big picture of being good early in the season and middle of the season when teams start to filter away, being able to embrace that so you can stack wins up and play your best football at the end of the year," Witten said. "That’s our focus. We can’t really talk about it. We understand that everyone is probably counting on us to be 8-8 all over again. This group of guys, knowing we have to work and give ourselves the best chance to be successful. I’m excited about that, it’s a great group."
"I believe the teams that are competing in December and January, a big part of that is how their training camp goes and their offseason work. I think it’s critical in our development of our football team," Witten said. "I’m excited. I think it’s a great time when we come back and get together."
Gosselin: With 11 picks, no excuse for Cowboys not to draft QB in late rounds | Dallas Morning News
Gosselin explains why the Cowboys should invest one of their many picks in a QB:
The Cowboys still have too many needs to go high for a quarterback in this draft. But I would start studying the quarterback board in the fifth round. The Cowboys do not have a sixth-rounder. That’s too bad. That’s where the Patriots found Tom Brady. The Cowboys do have those six seventh-rounders, and there is still value to be found there.
Gus Frerotte, Elvis Grbac and Trent Green were all seventh-rounders who developed into Pro Bowlers with a little seasoning. Matt Cassel and Ryan Fitzpatrick were seventh-rounders who became NFL starters, and Ken Dorsey, Matt Flynn, Glenn Foley, Greg McElroy, John Navarre, Tim Rattay and Tyler Thigpen all started NFL games in the salary-cap era out of that round.
Missing workouts costs Kyle Orton $75,000 - Todd Archer, ESPN Dallas
Even if he does play in 2014, Orton's salary will be reduced by $75.000 for not completing a pre-defined percentage of offseason workouts.
Cowboys won’t be punished for not listing Tony Romo on Week 16 injury report | Dallas Morning News
Romo went into the Week 16 game against the Redskins with "a sore back," and there were questions about why he wasn't listed on the injury report. But according to league spokesman Greg Aiello the Cowboys were "were cleared because they did not violate the rules."
2014 Cowboys Weekly Draft Notebook: Episode 14, More Defensive Line - Bob Sturm
In total, Sturm has profiled 22 defensive line prospects and has them all ranked at the end of this post. Before getting there, he looks in detail at Marcus Smith, Demarcus Lawrence, Dominique Easley, and Kareem Martin, on whom he goes all Broaddus:
If you prefer the prototypical defensive end who has arms like vines and a build/frame that will resemble all of the 4-3 DEs through the years, then you are looking at Missouri's Kony Ealy and Kareem Martin from North Carolina is similar. [...]
Martin, can do many things, as his numbers below will reflect, but with North Carolina, it always looks like it is a group siege with so many dominate [sic] rushers on the defensive line causing the straight push on an offensive line where 1-on-1's happen up and down the line. The levy [sic] breaks, and the QB falls from several players meeting back there.
Peshek: Edge Rushers 2.0 - Out Of The Box - Rotoworld.com
Greg Peshek shares his latest set of metrics, which he got by charting "every snap where the players rushed the QB." In this edition he looks at Kony Ealy, Dee Ford, Jeremiah Attaochu and Khalil Mack. In a previous post he looked at Jadeveon Clowney, Kareem Martin, James Gayle, Demarcus Lawrence and Anthony Barr. Very interesting conclusion: On a per snap basis, Kareem Martin was the most disruptive of all the edge rushers Peshek looked at.
2014 NFL Draft: Team-by-team first-round scenarios - NFL.com
Bucky Brooks suggests the Cowboys should trade up "to make sure Donald lands in Dallas as the top pick," but if Donald comes of the board earlier than expected, they should consider Kony Ealy as their top pick:
This would be considered a bit of a reach pick by some observers, but it's a likely proposition if board holds true to form. Ealy is an intriguing athlete with the size, length and motor to develop into an elite pass rusher, but he would struggle filling Demarcus Ware's shoes as a rookie starter.
Roger Goodell: 2015 NFL Draft Date Not Decided, Could Be Four Days | NESN.com
The NFL has their own version of an old idiom: "If it ain't broke, keep fixing it." The league moved back the 2014 NFL draft two weeks from April to May, and Roger Goodell told NFL Media's Jeff Darlington on Friday that more changes could be in order for the 2015 event: the NFL is considering making the draft a four-day event, though it would stay seven rounds.
Roger Goodell: Owners to talk playoff expansion in May - NFL.com
Playoff expansion is coming, the only question is when: Goodell said Thursday that owners will discuss the prospect at the Spring League Meeting in May, and pending a vote, the changes could be implemented as early as this season.
Buffalo Bills suspend operations on ‘Jills’ cheerleaders | Audibles - SI.com
The Bills cheerleaders are the third cheerleading crew after the Raiders and Bengals crews to file claims against their teams for being underpaid and "mistreated." The Bills responded by shutting down cheerleading operations completely.