Aw heck, why not start here:
A comparison of Mark Cuban and Jerry Jones over at our SBN Dallas Mavericks sister site has Jerral Wayne looking pretty good, especially when compared to Cubes:
It was almost like through some supernormal event, Jones and Cuban had switched brains during a Freaky Friday at American Airlines Center. The NFL owner famous for overspending and making a big splash on Draft Day became more disciplined and -- barring the Mo Claiborne trade in 2012 -- has let the draft come to him. The NBA owner known for accumulating assets to flip in shrewd trades was obsessed with clearing space on the cap sheet to go after star free agents.
The results, four years later? A rebuilt "Great Wall of Dallas" has a 35-year-old Tony Romo talking about playing several more years for the Cowboys. And the decision of center DeAndre Jordan to renege on a verbal pledge to the Mavs has the team contemplating tanking and likely has Dirk Nowitzki one step closer to retirement.
A couple of offseason stretcher pieces from The Mothership:
The Mothership's bottom-of-the-roster series continues with a look at UDFA Sean McDermott. At BTB, we have been saying that he and Mackenzy Bernadeau will battle for the final back-up interior O-line spot. Apparently, Phillips agrees:
2015 Outlook: McDermott played almost exclusively center at Miami, but he got a chance to show his versatility by lining up at both center and guard during the Cowboys’ offseason workouts. Seven-year veteran Mackenzy Bernadeau is the projected backup center as training camp nears, but McDermott will push for a backup interior swing spot on the 53-man roster or the practice squad.
The staff writers pass around the question hat and all put their answers in it. Today's query concerns Rolando McClain, and they choose to address the issue as one of practice reps in camp. Here's Nick Eatman:
I don't think the Cowboys should spend a lot of time with him trying to get him ready. He's proven that he's more unreliable than he is talented. At this point, whatever he gives you is a bonus. But the tricky part is handling the reps at camp, which is designed to get players ready for the season. So every rep McClain gets, it’s taking away from Brinkley and Hitchens. I just don’t think the Cowboys can afford to get multiple MIKE linebackers ready for the season. So I wouldn’t put McClain out with the first-team every time. Maybe a couple of times here and there but if this team thinks Brinkley is the guy to start in the middle, then he needs the majority of reps in practice to get him ready for those first four games. If McClain comes back ready to play, then that’s a problem Rod Marinelli will be happy to handle.
A trio of weekly chat-cum-blog-posts from Babe Laufenberg, courtesy of the Dallas Morning News.
In Part I, he's asked about the recent proliferation of "Best QB" posts:
...long question but I will try to give a short answer. If you notice, all the "lists’ come out at this time of year. Because there is virtually nothing going on in the sports world.
In Part II, Laufenberg gets a question about Ro-Mac being released:
Every organization runs their team a differently. But at some point, guys like him will eventually let you down. And he did again. In legal parlance, he is a recidivist. McClain is an extremely talented guy who has led an extremely difficult life. But one of the greatest "abilities" is availability, and who knows what happens when he returns from his suspension? You have to stand up in the front of the room at training camp on day one and ask, :"Who’s in? All in?" I am not sure he could give a resounding, "me!"
Part III has The Babe discussing the league's strategy in the Greg Hardy case:
They suspended him 10 games by putting it under the heading of "conduct detrimental to the game" (not to mention the "conduct detrimental" to the health of the woman involved). I believe if the case goes to court, the league will fight as hard as they can, even if they believe it is unwinnable. They cannot appear weak on domestic violence issues, so even if it costs a ton of money, they will go all in. And a ton of money is a relative term when you are talking NFL deep pockets.
The offseason Q&A from ESPN's NFC East beat writers continues with a question from Sheridan about whether, and to what degree, the Iggles have improved their secondary sufficiently to defend the liked of Dez Bryant and Beckham, Jr. The always -reliable Todd Archer offers a simple "no," and then elaborates:
From the Bryant perspective, I would say no. Of course, I might say no if they added Darrelle Revis as well. To me, the Byron Maxwell signing is a signal of desperation. The Cowboys made a similar signing in 2012 when they paid Brandon Carr $50 million. I get that you’re going to have to overpay in free agency to get players, especially cornerbacks, but I don’t think the Legion of Boom will crater without Maxwell. Bryant is just a nightmare for any cornerback, as is Beckham and to a lesser degree Jackson. The best way the Eagles can handle Bryant is to affect Tony Romo. I thought Fletcher Cox was the best defender the Cowboys played last year. Connor Barwin can be a dangerous pass-rusher too. If those guys up front play better, then that rebuilt secondary will be a lot better.
And, speaking of the NFC East, let's finish with a short tour of recent NFC East news:
Over at BBV, Valentine has a terrific piece on JPP's finger injury and subsequent amputation. One of many salient observations is made in the piece by former NY Jets All-Pro defensive tackle Joe Klecko:
"Listen, all good defensive linemen — Ndamukong Suh, J.J. Watt — their hands are everything. And if you watched anybody that's worth a damn, their hands are everything, and I think it'll be a big deal."
Tandler comes up with a list of the top QB's the team from Washington will face this season, and gets at least one of the rankings right:
1. Tony Romo, Cowboys (113.2 rating, 1st in NFL)—I know Redskins fans like to laugh at Romo and talk about some issues he’s had with ill-timed interceptions. But he led the NFL in completion percentage, touchdown pass percentage and passer rating and engineered four fourth-quarter comebacks. He’s as dangerous as they come.
BTW, Tom Brady and Drew Brees were numbers 2 and 3, respectively.
Apparently, T.O. told TMZ that he's genuinely worried about his ex-teammate Donovan McNabb, saying he's lucky the QB didn't kill anyone in his recent DUI arrest - which he termed a "wake-up call" - and wants him to get help:
"DUI is a very serious thing. The number of lives that have been lost from it are staggering. It's a blessing no one was hurt." Owens continued, "We may not still be playing, but we still serve as role models. You have to be more responsible."
"Next time, call Uber."
What's that they say about the pot and the kettle?