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Cowboys News: Why Cowboys' Continued Youth Movement Is A Good Thing

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Latest Cowboys headlines: Why Cowboys' free agency exodus is about making team better; more contract details; why Cowboys haven't released Tony Romo yet.

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Free agency is over a week old, and most of the big-name free agents have been signed already, but the Cowboys keep making headlines anyway. The latest are summarized below.

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Recent Youth Movement is Good Thing - Randy Gurzi, The Landry Hat
Gurzi focuses on something that has been criminally underreported in the recent lamentations and public handwringing over the Cowboys' free agency departures: in allowing cornerbacks Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr walk in free agency, the Dallas Cowboys continued their youth movement.

McClain will be 29 this season, Church just turned 29 and Brandon Carr will turn 31 years old. All three wanted too much money for players that advanced in their careers. Instead they will primarily be replaced with younger players like defensive tackle Maliek Collins (turns 22 in April) and cornerback Anthony Brown (23). Both excelled for their draft position and both are incredibly cheaper than the alternatives.

The smart free agent moves and youth movement by the Cowboys is working. This team is now led by the young guys who are getting help from moderately priced veterans as opposed to the past when high-priced veterans were just in the way of those younger guys progressing.

This Cowboys Free Agency Exodus Is About Making The Team Better - Blogging The Boys
Sisemore tells us in no uncertain terms to stop pretending that the Cowboys just lost a plethora of All-Pro players and to stop crying over spilled JAGs.

This exodus was a long time coming and it should be a welcome sight for sore eyes. The Cowboys will be a better defense next year despite being quite youthful. They have plenty of time between now and September to bring guys in that can make a difference.

There is no use in crying over spilled JAGs. This is about seeing the opportunity to make upgrades to a middling secondary. They’re not interested in just getting bodies, they want their defense to stop holding them back. In order for that to happen, Dallas had to be willing to part ways with guys that were average talents. The guys they really like are still on the roster and after the draft, there will only be more talent to work with.

Tyrone Crawford talks free agent departures - Drew Davison, The Star-Telegram
Crawford said that while it's tough to see teammates leave, he's not worried about the Cowboys' ability to replace the departed players.

As far as trusting the Cowboys’ front office to rebuild the unit, Crawford said: "Yeah, we have good ownership and good people around the organization who I just trust. We have a plan. With the defense that we run, Marinelli is going to get a guy in there and he’s going to have him doing the right thing anyway. I’m excited for next year. I’m ready for it. I’m not worried about what’s happening this offseason and free agency and stuff. Just excited to get going."

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Projecting how Cowboys' fill defensive gaps - Todd Archer, ESPN
Archer argues that the recent free agency losses won't derail the Cowboys, though they will hurt team depth. He then walks through each position and explains what the plan is for each. Here's his take on cornerbacks.

Scandrick should be better as he enters his second season off torn anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments. Carroll was signed to a three-year, $10 million deal after a productive season with the Philadelphia Eagles. He should replace Carr in the starting lineup. Brown played better than anybody could have expected a sixth-rounder to play. Now the Cowboys are hoping he can continue to improve in his second year. That’s hardly a guarantee, but the Cowboys are putting their faith in Brown with how they have approached free agency. They figure to add a cornerback or two in the draft as well.

Most underrated, overrated free-agent signings - Sam Monson, ESPN
PFF offers the five most underrated and overrated FA signings.There is no overrated Cowboys signing on this list, but Terrance Williams makes the list as an underrated signing.

4. Terrance Williams, WR, Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys managed to keep Williams on a four-year deal with limited guaranteed money after seeing a few other receivers get big-money contracts. Williams will likely always be capped in production by the offense in Dallas -- and how far down the list of weapons he is -- but he is a valuable big-play threat who has a catch of at least 42 yards in each season of his career and one of 75 or more yards in two of those seasons. Williams has caught 61.7 percent of the passes thrown his way in his career, averaging 16.2 yards per reception and 4.7 yards after the catch.

Three Free Agent Cornerbacks Cowboys Can Still Target In Free Agency - Danny Phantom, Blogging The Boys
Phantom offers up three free agent corners the Cowboys could still go after: Brandon Flowers, Leon Hall, and Darryl Morris.

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What new Buffalo Bills DE Ryan Davis learned during time with Cowboys - Matthew Fairburn, NewYorkUpstate.com
Here's a nice story about Ryan Davis, who finally got to experience some winning in 2016 with the Cowboys and hopes to bring part of the winning Cowboys culture to Buffalo.

"Well last year I learned that you have to be the same," Davis said. "You have to have the same mindset and recommit every week. If you're on a winning streak, you've got to approach Wednesday's practice the same. You lost a game, you got to approach Wednesday's practice the same. You got to go out there and compete with everything that you do. So I think for me, coming from losing, and coming into having the best record in the NFL, that really helped me see what it takes to win. From a practice standpoint, we got after it in practice all the way throughout the playoffs, so there was no letup. For me, that was good to see and good to experience and I know what it takes. So for me to come here and be a part of the foundation that they're building, I think it does nothing but help to have a guy like me in. I'm just going to do the best I can to learn and take off from there."

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More contract details emerged yesterday for current and former Cowboys players.

Mailbag: Gaining More Compensatory Picks? - Dallas Cowboys
Bryan Broaddus and Dave Helman tackle a reader question about potential comp picks for the Cowboys. Here's what Broaddus replied:

Hopefully the 2018 NFL Draft is as deep as this one. Could get a 4th, 6th and a couple of 7th.

You can get more info on potential comp picks at OverTheCap.com, or simply look at the table below.

Dallas Cowboys Comp Pick Tracker
Qualifying Free Agents Lost: 6 Qualifying Free Agents Gained: 2
Name Rd. Annual Value Name Rd. Annual Value
Ronald Leary 4th $8,750,000 - - - -
Barry Church 4th/5th $6,500,000 - - - -
Brandon Carr 5th $5,750,000 - - - -
Terrell McClain 5th
$5,250,000 - - - -
Morris Claiborne 5th/6th $5,000,000 - - - -
J.J. Wilcox 6th $4,250,000 - - - -
Jack Crawford 6th $3,433,333 Nolan Carroll
6th $3,333,333
Lance Dunbar 7th $3,000,000 Stephen Paea
7th
$2,000,000
Non-Compensatory free agents
Terrance Williams $4,125,000
Jonathan Cooper $2,000,000
Brice Butler $1,100,000

Darren McFadden $980,000
Ryan Davis - - $1,100,00 Damontre Moore - - $825,000
David Irving $615,000

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And now to the part where we just make up stuff.

Mike Florio has interesting reason why Dallas Cowboys haven't released Tony Romo yet - Paul Jackiewicz, Toro Times
Mike Florio of Pro Football was a guest on Sports Talk 790 in Houston where he speculated on Romo's status.

"I just wonder whether or not Jones realized as it got closer to the point where he was going to cut Romo free that maybe it’s not as interesting to let him go to Houston. Because the coverage in Dallas was very intense on the day the got out that he wasn’t going to be with the team any longer.

"So he goes to the Texans and all of a sudden, the Dallas Morning News has been assigned to cover the Texans, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram has assigned someone to cover the Texans, the local TV stations in Dallas have someone covering the Texans. And you have infringement on the Cowboys’ turf.

"I don’t think Jerry Jones wants that. And it’s not a Houston, Dallas rivalry thing. Although I guess the proximity makes it a concern that you don’t want fans who aren’t all that far away geographically from Houston to suddenly become interested in the Texans. What if the Cowboys reverse what they had last year? You know 2015 was, 2016 was good. What if they boomerang back the other way? And the Texans end up being good. And the Texans dominate the cover, the discussion and everything because Romo’s had this rebirth while the Cowboys re falling apart.

"If I’m Jerry Jones, I don’t think I want that. I want to try and push this thing toward Denver if I can. And maybe that’s one of the reasons they slammed the breaks on this thing."