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Cowboys mailbag: Questions on offensive line, kicker and Jets game plan

People have questions about the Cowboys, and we strive to provide the answers.

Dallas Cowboys v New York Giants Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Every week, we will take questions on Twitter and Facebook about Dallas Cowboys players and other questions surrounding the team. So let’s get right into it.

“What are they looking to do to solidify depth at the backups for on offensive line?”

(@MyDrDave on X)

Mike: There’s an aged old saying from this Cowboys front office that’s very fitting here, “we like our guys”. Chuma Edoga might not be a huge name in the NFL, bust last week against a solid inside defensive line unit he held his own and allowed zero sacks. If we had to plug him in for an entire season I would more concerned, but for a game or two he adds excellent depth to the guard position behind two highly talented starting guards. We got to see a little T.J. Bass on the field last week, and did enough in his limited snaps to show promise. For now it looks unlikely they will get another lineman in, but as we get further down the season who knows what Jerry will spring on us.

Brandon: I think the Cowboys are in a position like they’ve always been—develop the young talent while having a veteran backup who could play both guard and tackle. Dallas has T.J. Bass on the roster, who could develop into a starter someday. Still, the team decided not to put him in the lineup against the Giants because they have a more experienced option in Chuma Edoga.

For how things looked to start training camp, Edoga held his own against some of the best defensive tackles in the league. Was it all pretty going against Dexter Lawrence or Leonard Williams? Not always, but he did enough to where he wasn’t a liability.

It’ll be interesting if the Cowboys give Tyler Smith another week to recover from his hamstring injury so he doesn’t re-aggravate it too soon. I think the depth is where it’s at right now on the o-line until proven otherwise.

“I’m concerned about kicker”

(Eric Mattison via Facebook)

Mike: Yes. ok, I get that. The easy miss on the extra point can leave you concerned and that’s understandable. But look at it this way. He missed the first kick, which was under bad conditions, and I’m not just talking about the weather. But then after that first miss he went out on the field and stayed perfect for the rest of the game. That tells us that not only he can make the kicks, but he had the mental strength to get over that first missed kick and not let doubt deep into his mind. Let’s see how he does in his first home game with the crowd behind him.

Brandon: I wouldn’t be just yet. Sure, Brandon Aubrey missed his first PAT of the season, but the veteran kicker the Giants just gave an extension to when 0 for 2 in the game. Asking anyone to kick in the conditions New York and Dallas had to play in Sunday night would not be their first choice.

The first kick could be attributed to nerves, but Aubrey was solid for the rest of the game afterward. Because the Cowboys kept scoring, the first-year NFL kicker could get comfortable and shake any remaining jitters.

If Aubrey struggles at home this weekend, where the environment is neutral, and the crowd won’t be a factor, the team could move to find someone else. Until then, give him the benefit of the doubt after one week, and then we could reconvene after five weeks.

“Surely, with Aaron Rodgers being out for the season, the game plan for the Jets has to change. Are we to expect the Jets to go run heavy?”

(Lloyd Poland via Facebook)

Mike: With the way this team is now set up, and how the Cowboys defense looked at the start of last week’s game, there’s no doubt this is the game plan for the Jets. Expect plenty of reps for the Jets running backs going straight at the Cowboys defense to wear them down. Not just on neutral game script, even if the game becomes one-sided toward the Cowboys. The only limiting factor for the Jets will be for Breece Hall and how cautious the coaches want to be with him as he’s still recovering from last year’s ACL injury.

Brandon: I would say that’s a reasonably accurate assessment. Zach Wilson has proven to be a liability for holding on to the football. Whether it’s fumbles or interceptions, the former first-round pick finds ways to put his team in bad situations.

He threw an inexcusable interception against the Bills in Week 1 that could be forgiven, given the circumstances he was thrust into. However, if Wilson is not turning the ball over, he tends to extend plays unnecessarily and could be sacked for a significant loss.

The way to mitigate those issues is to rely on a former Pro Bowl running back, Dalvin Cook, and a surprisingly healthy Breece Hall. Expect the Jets to try and establish the run as much as possible, and it becomes a low-scoring game.

Poll Of The Week: Finally, we asked you which player stood out on defense against the Giants the most. Here are the results and our take on the poll.

Brandon: An argument can be made for any of these players being No. 1. However, I am shocked to see Stephon Gilmore so low. He was everything the Cowboys could have hoped for and more when they traded for him this offseason.

He was in the hip pocket of various receivers and probably the Giants’ most prominent weapon in tight end Darren Waller. Gilmore finished his first game as a Cowboy, recording two forced incompletions, one interception, and allowed a 12.5 passer rating when Daniel Jones threw in his direction.

That is quite the first impression for a veteran cornerback in his 12th season.

Mike: I’m surprised to see Stephon Gilmore so low. He led the team in passer rating allowed at just 12.5, and it took him about one quarter to record his first Dallas Cowboys interception. Micah Parsons was a completely disruptive last week, and if he played a full game who knows how many sacks he could of got. This week guys like Parsons and Gilmore need to be completely on their toes to slow this Jets offense down and not let Zach Wilson get comfortable in the pocket.

Be sure to check Blogging The Boys as well as @kenfigkowboy and @brandoniswrite on X and also Facebook for the weekly post, asking for your questions to include in the weekly mailbag. Also, check for the Poll of The Week on X. Many thanks to everyone that sends in your questions and votes.

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