Every week, we take questions on Twitter and Facebook about Dallas Cowboys players and other questions surrounding the team. So let’s get right into it.
“Should we move on from Dak and McCarthy? I think we need a young, dynamic head coach and a quarterback who can run the ball”
(Jess Warren via Facebook)
Brandon: It’s too early to say right now. However, the discussion can be had if the Cowboys get to Week 12 against the Washington Commanders on Thanksgiving and continue their poor offensive performances.
In between then, Dallas will be taking on the Chargers, Rams, Eagles, Giants, and Panthers, who give up points and yards to every offense they face. Mike McCarthy has mentioned the strength of this team is the defense, but things might have to change if the offense ends up being near the bottom of the league during that stretch.
“Do we move Micah Parsons to linebacker?”
(Jossy Farries via Facebook)
Brandon: The Cowboys are losing Leighton Vander Esch to a neck injury that should keep him sidelined for 4-6 weeks on injured reserve, so they need more depth at that position. The team did sign veteran Rashaan Evans, who should get in the mix after the bye week, but Parsons should play more linebacker against the Chargers on Monday night. The benefit Dallas has is they have depth at the edge position where Dorance Armstrong, Sam Williams, or Dante Fowler can fill in for Parsons.
This way, the Cowboys keep No. 11 on the field with his instincts and hope he can help defend the run.
Mike: At this stage, the coaches have to. The Cowboys have Markquese Bell they bring in to take snaps, and if you look at Donovan Wilson’s style of play, he could even cover you at the linebacker position in a pinch. Parsons’ snap count is more than likely going to go up, but expect to see more of them coming at the off-ball position. While playing for Penn State, Parsons played mostly off-ball linebacker and that was what he was originally drafted to the Cowboys to play. Most people will be concerned about the lack of pass rush as a result, but the defense has plenty of pass rushers to fill the void like Sam Williams, Donte Fowler and Dorance Armstrong. Even if Parsons does make the temporary move to linebacker, Dan Quinn won’t leave him completely out of his pass rush plan.
“Is Michael Gallup a good fit for this offense?”
(Ethan Chasin via Facebook)
Brandon: I think so because he’s been the most productive receiver this season. When McCarthy ran his West Coast offense in Green Bay, he had x-receivers for Aaron Rodgers to throw the ball up to in contested situations. Those receivers were James Jones and Jordy Nelson for his offense and Gallup is that for Dak Prescott.
We’re seeing a healthier Gallup confident in being that aggressive x-receiver again, going over the middle for a quick slant or trying to stretch the field with a deep pass. It will take time, and unfortunately, it might be a case of the offensive stalemate in 2021—there are too many cooks in the kitchen, with Gallup, CeeDee Lamb, and Brandin Cooks all needing passes in their direction.
Mike: Since his injury two seasons ago, Gallup hasn’t looked the same both physically and mentally. The issue Gallup now faces is he’s not able to separate, and that’s fine when he could win with his strength and physicality. But last week the interception that came his way was all Gallup’s fault. He runs the slant and allows a much smaller and less physical defensive back to cross his face and get into him, the result is the forced interception. Basic slant route running teaches the receivers to never allow a defender to cross into that space, and Gallup of old would never had allowed that. So the problem now is if Gallup can’t separate or win the physical battle at the top of routes, Dak can’t trust him.
“Will there be any more trades before the deadline?”
(Riley Bragginton via Facebook)
Brandon: Do the Cowboys need another piece on offense? Not necessarily. Could they use another veteran offensive lineman? That could be possible if they feel Chuma Edoga hasn’t performed well or another player like Matt Waletzko remains on injured reserve for the remainder of the season.
If any trade were to happen, it would be on the defensive side of the ball. They could certainly use another linebacker, so they signed Evans this week. If you’re looking to replace C.J. Goodwin on special teams, that could be Israel Mukuamu or Eric Scott, who have been on the inactive list almost the entire season.
On the flip side, Dallas could get involved by sending a player away like Dante Fowler or Dorance Armstrong, who might get more snaps elsewhere and could get Sam Williams more playing time.
Mike: We got asked something similar last week about whether the Cowboys should make a trade, and myself and Brandon agreed linebacker was a position they should bolster. That was before the Leighton Vander Esch injury so the demand for linebacker is still high. The move to sign Rashaan Evans is a solid move and I’m surprised he wasn’t signed sooner to another team. But this team still needs linebackers not just for rotation, but to cover special teams as well.