After another disappointing 8-8 season in 2013, the Cowboys are focusing on improving in the off-season in order to finally get over the hump and make a playoff appearance for the first time since the 2009-10 season. The ultimate question is how can a team improve after losing so much valuable talent? The Cowboys have lost veterans DeMarcus Ware, Jason Hatcher, and Miles Austin due to free agency. You also can’t forget about the season ending injury to linebacker Sean Lee. It was reasonable for the organization to cut ties with the three players in free agency. The Cowboys were barely under the salary cap and those players we’re either to0 expensive for their age or just diminishing in talent. Losing Sean Lee was just a major blow to the team.
If the Cowboys even wanted to think about competing in a very competitive division they had to improve on their depth in the off season. After the draft and a couple of free agent signing they took a step in the right direction. In this year’s draft the cowboys drafted all but two defensive players to help on improving the leagues worst defense. The Cowboys also signed defensive lineman Henry Melton, Terrell McClain, Jeremy Mincey, and Anthony Spencer to add more depth to a position group that desperately needed it.
The Cowboys have made strides on improving their defense but there are still some questions on this defense heading into the season. The Cowboys still have a very questionable defensive backfield. Brandon Carr hasn’t lived up to his huge contract, and Morris Claiborne hasn’t been on the field enough to live up to his 6th overall selection spot in the 2012 draft. Orlando Scandrick had the best season last year out of any corner on the team and he started off being the slot corner. The Cowboys should sign a veteran corner just for security if any of those corners fall to injury.
The Cowboys should take a deep look at cornerback Asante Samuel. His skills have diminished over the years. He’s not the play-making corner he was a couple years back, but he still played in 11 games last season for the Falcons. His knowledge of the game could help the younger corners on the team learn to play at a higher level. He also still has a little something left in the tank as well.
The Cowboys should also look for a veteran safety because like the corner position depth is a real issue. The starters at safety for now are Barry Church and J.J. Wilcox. Jeff Heath stepped in for Wilcox multiple times last season, but he had issues defending the deep ball. A veteran like Ed Reed could be a nice pickup because he wouldn’t cost much and his veteran presence is much needed for a such a young group.
The Cowboys have done lots in the off season to improve their front seven whether in the draft or free agency, but little has been done to improve on the pass defense. A veteran cornerback or safety like Samuel or Reed should be the final offseason move for the Cowboys.
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