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Cowboys News & Notes: The Suffering Is Almost Over, Are The Cowboys Tanking For The Draft?

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There is only one more game to suffer through for us Cowboys fans and this season can't end fast enough. Are the Cowboys in tank-mode?

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Lawrence Finishing Season As Most Consistent, Productive Defensive Player -Nick Eatman-Dallas Cowboys
Three games into the regular season, defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence decided to change his mindset and it certainly paid off.

"I felt like I was tensed up, worrying about ‘Dang, I’ve got to get to the quarterback.’ Or I have to get a sack," Lawrence said. "Instead of just ‘Do your job and just let it go.’ It was the New Orleans game. I just stopped thinking about sacking the quarterback and worked on my rushes."

Five Dallas Cowboys Thoughts: How Important Is It To Draft A QB In Round One? - Danny Phantom-Blogging The Boys
Here are five thoughts about the Cowboys as the team heads into its final game.

After being caught with their pants down in the backup quarterback department, it doesn't take a genius to figure out the Cowboys are going to be a little more diligent in bringing in a more serviceable QB to play behind the geriatric Tony Romo next season. And since they'll have a top draft pick, they could take a stab at one of the top collegiate QBs in the draft. How often do you get a chance to do that?

Darren McFadden Happy To Shed Label With Success On Field- Todd Archer- ESPN
Dallas running back Darren McFadden is three yards away from the second 1,000-yard season of his career.

"It’ll definitely means a lot to me," McFadden said of reaching 1,000 yards. "Just some of the down years I’ve had, man, with injuries and things and having to deal with that."

Cowboys Receiver Dez Bryant Put On IR, Facing Surgeries On Foot And Ankle -Clarence Hill- The Star-Telegram
Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant has officially been shut down for the season with foot and ankle injuries that will require surgery.

"I don’t want to get into the details of that," Garrett said. "I’m certainly not an expert in that area. But it had been bothering him so we just felt like we wanted to go back and look at it. In doing so, we feel like we have to go back and help him get that thing, both the foot and the ankle, healed up. It was not in the best interest of Dez or our football team to have him play this week."

Dallas Cowboys: Time for Cowboys To Find Tony Romo's Successor? The Top 5 Quarterbacks In Next Year's NFL Draft -Michael Florek- SportsDay
Tony Romo's season is likely over and the Cowboys are headed for a possible top 5 pick. Is the opportunity Jerry Jones has to find Romo's heir?

The 2016 quarterback draft class has five quarterbacks as solid projections to be taken in the first two rounds according to CBS Sports.

In An Adverse Season, The Dallas Cowboys Couldn’t Cash In -Massimo Russo- Cover32

Faced with adversity, the Dallas Cowboys weren’t able to overcome injuries at vital positions.

What’s primarily helped teams like Seattle, Green Bay, and New England overcome adversity is having what’s most important, good health at quarterback. The Cowboys, on the other hand, haven’t had that luck this year with Romo playing in only four games this season and not having Bryant at full strength. An effective ground game can keep games within reach, but when your offense can’t sustain drives, find pay dirt or find ways to make plays downfield through the air, defense’s won’t respect the pass and will play with extra defenders in the box. You can put some of the woes on coaching, but it’s evident that the front office got too complacent and banked on Romo’s health to be in good standards. Team owner/general manager Jerry Jones admitted himself that he got cute at the QB spot last month during an appearance on Dallas’ 105.3 The Fan, but has made it clear that finding better insurance at QB is paramount.

Kellen Moore, Offense Looking For More Points In His Second Start Without Dez -Rob Phillips- Dallas Cowboys
What would Kellen Moore like to improve from his first quarterback start to his second in this Sunday’s season finale? Simple.

"Score a few more points," he said. "That’s kind of the whole objective, obviously. Hopefully, in this one, we can do a little better."

Cowboys Are In Full "Organic Tanking" Mode - Tom Ryle- Blogging The Boys
Injuries and a chance to evaluate some lesser-known players have made it almost impossible to do anything else, no matter how hard they play to win.

Mike Fisher coined a great term for this: Organic tanking. The team still goes out and plays hard, but without a proven NFL level quarterback or their biggest playmaker, Dez Bryant, who is now going on IR, the team is going to be hard-pressed to get a fifth win this season no matter who lines up against them on Sunday. That means that the opportunity exists to take a good look at a lot of down-roster players to add more data that can be used to make decisions once the season ends.

Cowboys Give More Than A Hint To Byron Jones' Future Position- Todd Archer- ESPN
Dallas Cowboys 2015 first-round pick Byron Jones started at safety against the Buffalo Bills and that may shed light on his position for the future.

Jones started at free safety despite the absence of Morris Claiborne at cornerback as the coaches decided to pair Deji Olatoye at cornerback withBrandon Carr. Jones started at corner in the Dec. 19 loss to the New York Jets in Claiborne's absence due to a hamstring strain. He also started at corner when Claiborne missed back-to-back games in November with a hamstring injury. By moving him, it is pretty clear Jones, who was credited with four tackles against the Bills, will be a safety going forward.

Greg Hardy Sits Out Practice With An Illness; La’el Collins Also Misses-Charean Williams- The Star-Telegram
Greg Hardy was not at practice for the portion open to the media. The Cowboys said he was sick. Others missed practice too.

Greg Hardy was not at practice for the portion open to the media. The Cowboys said he was sick. The controversial defensive end missed an OTA with an illness, an October practice with an illness and missed the team’s mandatory hospital visits earlier this month with an illness. Hardy has asthma and required a breathing treatment during the team’s game against the Panthers on Thanksgiving.

Too Early OffSeason Cowboys Report, The Rose(Blue)-Colored Edition -Jim Scott- Blogging The Boys
As the commercial says, within six weeks, we'll all be undefeated again. An optimistic look at what could be next year.

And, by and large, they are right. There has been a lot to be pleased with in this mess.Sean Lee has been demonic. Darren McFadden has managed a strong running game - since taking over as the starter, McFadden has been second only to that guy in Minnesota, without having any passing threat to keep safeties off of him. DeMarcus Lawrence has become every bit a player worth two draft picks. Byron Jones, Randy Gregory, and La'el Collins have all shown the developmental flashes we hoped for.Lucky Whitehead has finally settled into a role on the team. Brice Butler and David Irving look like a very nice practice squad poaches.