It’s no secret by now that the Cowboys are fully committed to the transition to the Tampa 2 defense. Many believe that the Cowboys current roster will be able to transition nicely with players like DeMarcus Ware and Anthony Spencer who have experience playing in the 4-3 scheme.
A few weeks ago the Cowboys made a bold move by releasing veteran safety Gerald Sensabaugh, a move that left many questions. Sensabaugh was the only starting caliber safety that played last year. His release left Barry Church and Matt Johnson as the projected starters at the position. Both missed the 2012 season due to injury.
So what will the Cowboys do to ensure that safety doesn’t become a huge liability?
There are two likely solutions. One popular thought around NFL circles is that free agent safety Ronde Barber could very well be on his way to Arlington.
Barber seems like the smart choice because of his familiarity with Cowboys’ defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin’s scheme. Last season as a free safety Barber but up a stat line of 92 tackles, one sack, one forced fumble and four interceptions. However, most of his career has been spent playing the cornerback position. In his career he has 1005 tackles, 28 sacks, 47 interceptions and eight touchdowns.
Barber would help ease the learning curve for the defensive backs. He has made a Hall of Fame career through the Tampa 2 defense and has perfected it’s technique. With young guys like Brandon Carr, Morris Claiborne and Matt Johnson being such large question marks in this scheme having an experienced vet like Barber would be a huge asset.
Another option would be to do everything in your power to draft Kenny Vaccaro.
Now I’ve openly discussed my issue with drafting Vaccaro. I think that he is more of a strong safety type and isn’t quite elite.
That doesn’t mean that I’m right.
Vaccaro is as dynamic a safety as there is in this draft. The Cowboys have needed someone to stabilize that position since the departure of Darren Woodson. Vaccaro has the speed and range to be able to cover deep zones and be effective in single high coverage.
The Cowboys have struggled with committing to a first round safety missing on Earl Thomas and Mark Barron in recent years. Eventually the Cowboys are going to have to do something here. Many draft scouts have Vaccaro graded higher than Barron and though I don’t see it, he’s a tempting prospect with such deep offensive line and defensive line draft classes.
The one thing we can be absolutely certain of is that a move is coming. The addition of Vaccaro or Barber would be great for this team in their defensive transition.
But my opinion is that both might be best.