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Cowboys News & Notes: Coaching Hires, Some Self-Scouting, And Draft Prospects Of Interest

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Plus some takes on the pending DeMarco Murray decision - one of which seems, well, hard to understand.

Congrats to Marc Colombo on joining the coaching staff!
Congrats to Marc Colombo on joining the coaching staff!
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Cowboys Coaching Shuffle Includes Loney, Colombo " CBS Dallas / Fort Worth

Word that the Cowboys were interviewing Steve Loney to become assistant offensive line coach led to the question of whether they would hire him or give the job to Marc Colombo, who worked with the scouting staff last year and filled in at the Pro Bowl. Well, when you have three All Pro former first-round picks on the line, it may make sense to go with quantity.

The Dallas Cowboys are continuing to shuffle their coaching staff's "second level" with what sources tell 105.3 The Fan will be the addition of both long-time NFL offensive line coach Steve Loney and former Cowboys offensive lineman Marc Colombo, both of whom will work under elevated line coach Frank Pollack.

(Also, we have already covered the departure of Monte Kiffin.)

Cowlishaw: Keep Randle for now; but if info from 1st 911 call proven, Cowboys must cut him immediately | Dallas Morning News

Expect to see plenty more writers offering their advice on the Joseph Randle mess.

Randle is the subject of an ongoing domestic violence investigation in Wichita, Kan. If you didn't hear the 911 calls released Monday, the mother of his children says he threatened her with a gun, broke the glass out of a car and hit another woman. She also pleads with the police to remain anonymous because she's scared.

In a subsequent call, she tells police that it has all been worked out and that there's no need for them to come.

If the police investigation appears to suggest that the first call is a true reflection of what was going on at a Wichita hotel last week, the Cowboys need to cut him immediately. Once you get to that point - he will be subject to a six-game suspension under the league's new domestic violence policy - then you have to weigh the costs and the benefits.

Cowboys ’15 Draft: Roster Still A Year Away - Dallas - Scout

Our former colleague KD Drummond offers his take on the state of the Cowboys.

The Dallas Cowboys are still a year away. Sort of.

Not from competing for a championship; that time is now and the window is clearly open. They are still a year away in terms of having what could be termed as a complete roster. Unless Dallas goes full-tilt in free agency this year, there will still be unaddressed needs once the draft gets here. Each recent season, the holes have gotten smaller and smaller, but they are still there.

NFC East awards: Odell Beckham, rookie of the year - ESPN

The series on the best of the NFC East continues. And although Odell Beckham of the New York Giants got the nod from the writers, the Cowboys had more than one player who was considered.

There were only two real candidates: Beckham and Dallas Cowboys guard Zack Martin. Martin received all four second-place votes. Cowboys linebacker Anthony Hitchens received two third-place votes, as did Philadelphia Eagles kicker Cody Parkey.

Former NFL coach and GM: Cowboys would have easy choice if forced to decide between Adrian Peterson, DeMarco Murray | Dallas Morning News

Could someone explain the logic behind this?

According to former Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik and former Jets and Chiefs head coach Herm Edwards, the decision is easy.

Both would take Peterson, who will be 30 in March, over Murray, who turns 27 on Thursday.

Why Cowboys should be careful on Murray - Stats & Info Blog - ESPN

Meanwhile, more and more people are getting on the "DeMarco Murray is unlikely to duplicate 2014" bandwagon.

Murray had 449 touches in 2014, the sixth most in a season in NFL history. It was also the first season of his career he played in 16 games. History indicates regression will win out next season and his production will decline.

Roc Nation, CAA Sports Announce Planned Partnership Has Ended - SportsBusiness Daily | SportsBusiness Journal | SportsBusiness Daily Global

The only thing of interest here is that Dez Bryant is represented by CAA and Roc Nation. Hard to know if this will have any impact on his contract negotiations.

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Some self-scouting on the Cowboys' current players.

Use of personnel packages shows how much Cowboys valued Beasley over Escobar | Dallas Morning News

A look at how the once anticipated 12 personnel package lost favor this season, giving Cole Beasley much more impact on the field than Gavin Escobar.

Escobar's deficiency as a blocker made him more one-dimensional and prevented him from being the every-down player that could have transformed the Cowboys' "12" personnel package into what Jones had envisioned.

So the Cowboys went with Beasley. Dallas ran 42 percent of its plays out of an "11" look, which features one running back, one tight end and three receivers. Beasley was in the Cowboys' most common lineup - a set that included Witten, running back DeMarco Murray and receivers Terrance Williams and Dez Bryant.

Roster Rundown: Bernadeau Gives O-Line Combo Of Experience, Versatile Depth | Dallas Cowboys

Mackenzy Bernadeau provided much needed depth, but his future with the team may be tied to the outlook for Ronald Leary.

What will be interesting going forward now is that if this front office decides that, for what they have in Bernadeau, do they try and upgrade the position even further? They could add a younger and potentially cheaper veteran or go the draft route by using a pick to get a player that they could develop in the future -- to not only be that swing guy but take Leary's spot in the future.

Dallas Cowboys free-agent debate: Sterling Moore - ESPN

Sterling Moore has become one of those players that just forces the team to keep him around.

Because Moore has shown the ability to play outside and inside, he brings a lot of versatility to the defense and allows the coaches to match up their top corners, like Scandrick, on top receivers all over the field. A nickel corner is like a 12th starter because of how many snaps he plays during the course of a game.

Dallas Cowboys free-agent debate: Bruce Carter - ESPN

Bruce Carter is a real puzzle, and may just be too big a risk.

The Cowboys have to figure out if the Carter who closed the season can play that way for an entire season. A second-round pick in 2011, Carter has battled consistency issues his entire career with the Cowboys. For every good game or play, he would revert back to head-scratching ways that confounded his coaches.

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And of course, some draft stuff, starting with a double dose of Bob Sturm evaluations.

Bob Sturm’s 2015 NFL Draft profile: What I see in Owamagbe Odighizuwa, DE, UCLA | Dallas Morning News

This may be a great prospect for the Cowboys, but I may throw my keyboard through the wall trying to learn how to spell his name if he winds up in Dallas. Don't even ask me about what will happen if I have to learn how to pronounce it.

Overall, I really like this player for the Cowboys in the late 1st or 2nd.  He is perfect for their scheme and he possesses the tools that Rod Marinelli values with a high motor and a relentless battle level.  He seems like the type of young piece that you could add to Tyrone Crawford and DeMarcus Lawrence and feel pretty solid about, provided he passes all of his medical exams to make sure the hip is not the sort of thing that is recurring.

Bob Sturm’s 2015 NFL Draft profile: What I see in Paul Dawson, LB, TCU | Dallas Morning News

Drafting a linebacker is going to be affected by what happens with Justin Durant, Rolando McClain, and Bruce Carter.

He is very good, the question is whether a team like the Cowboys should allocate resources here when they really want to address the sack issue and the potential replacement for DeMarco Murray. Complicated, but Dawson is exceptional at what he does, which is to cause major chaos on a regular basis.

NFL Draft 2015: Top prospects at each position | NFL | Sporting News

It is a slideshow, just to warn you. Here is a look across the draft. One part that is of great interest to us:

Running backs

1. Todd Gurley, Georgia

2. Melvin Gordon, Wisconsin

3. Jay Ajayi, Boise State

4. Duke Johnson, Miami (FL)

5a. David Johnson, Northern Iowa

5b. Tevin Coleman, Indiana

5c. David Cobb, Minnesota