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Should Cowboys Add Another Safety Before Training Camp?

Brian Martin

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Should Cowboys Add Another Safety Before Training Camp?

The Dallas Cowboys are extremely thin at the safety position. Fact. They haven't really brought in anyone to upgrade the position from last season. Fact. I just wanted to point that out because there's a lot of discussion as to whether or not the Cowboys need to add another safety before training camp.

I don't know where you stand on this debate or how I feel about it personally, but it's definitely something that needs to be discussed from the Cowboys end. It is the one position where there is a lot of unknown and inexperienced. If one of their current safeties were to go down with an injury and miss any time, the whole defense would suffer.

As things stand right now, Jeff Heath is the only one who will reprise his starting role on the backend of the Cowboys defense. Behind him are Xavier Woods and Kavon Frazier, but knowing exactly how they fit in at this moment is completely up in the air.

Unfortunately, that's the top three safeties for the Dallas Cowboys heading into the 2018 season. What's even more bothersome is their fourth might be an undrafted rookie, Tyree Robinson. I don't know about you, but I find that very concerning. But, maybe Kris Richard, the defensive backs coach and passing game coordinator, knows something we don't.

Kris Richard

Dallas Cowboys DB Coach Kris Richard

Fortunately, Kris Richard was recently asked if he had any concerns about the safety position on the "Doomsday Podcast" with Matt Mosley and Ed Werder. He said he had "none".

"I'm confident. I feel really good at this point in time and it's because the level of character of our guys," he said. "We're going to get better. That's the deal because our guys are young, focused, I think the hunger's there. I love the look in their eyes. I love how everyone is buying in, is focused and paying attention to detail. It makes a difference when guys care. It makes a difference when each one wants to teach one. We're trying to build something special. We want to be tribe-like. We want to be more than a team."

It certainly sounds like Kris Richard is excited about the Dallas Cowboys current safeties. Of course, he would never just come out and say that this group is terrible or he wished they'd add Earl Thomas another available safety. That's just not how things work. He's here to coach up the guys on the roster and not worry about personnel moves.

I don't know about you, but I know I would feel a lot better if they had one more experienced safety who could come in and compete for a starting job. Maybe someone like Tre Boston or Kenny Vaccaro, who are still unsigned. Maybe make that trade for Earl Thomas? That's a dream that just won't die.

Regardless, the Dallas Cowboys need to do something to address their depth at the safety position. I don't know what their plans are moving forward, but hopefully they have a contingency plan in place. It's just smart business.

Do you think the Dallas Cowboys need to add a safety before training camp?



Level C2/C3 quadriplegic. College graduate with a bachelors degree in sports and health sciences-concentration sports management. Sports enthusiast. Dallas Cowboys fanatic. Lover of life with a glass half-full point of view.

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15 Comments
  • Timothy Zackery

    Just as i thought from begin or free agency i wanted Eric Reid or Tre Boston, Kenny Vacarro or trade for Earl Thomas my thought hasn’t change at all. I still would love Navarro Bowman LB too.

    • Brian Martin

      Tre Boston has been the safety I’ve wanted them to add, but I think they are kind of happy with what they have right now. We’ll see how things go moving forward.

  • winstar

    I have noticed Richard saying on several occasions that he is happy with what he has. I’m also hoping Kam Kelly shows up. I got to believe if the talk in the coaches room was that there is a need then McClay would be turning the world over finding the right guy.

    • Brian Martin

      I like the Cowboys current safeties as well, but I wish there was a little more experience. There is a lot of unknown about how Xavier Woods and Kavon Frazier will perform with a larger role, perhaps as a starter. And, I don’t think Kam Kelly is playing much safety. I think they have him playing mostly CB.

      • Hammer33

        I like who’s there, but. Going in with 3 is really not good for anybody. If the brought someone in that could beat out one of the projected starters then great, we have a very capable back up. Be it Heath or woods. Or that FA becomes very valuable for rotation or depth.

        I wonder if one of the FA won’t come in because they may have to compete for a starting role. All 3 of the primary available were starters. Ego may be playing a role, but it purely conjecture on my part.

        The other possibility is they like one of the starters and feel bringing in a vet could limit the progress of the other.

        Remember when Heath and Wilcox came in they let Allen go for that reason. They had one vet, church. Kept 3 rookies in Heath, Wilcox and Hamilton. Should be interesting.

        • Sexcdex Xfact

          Excellent

      • Sexcdex Xfact

        It’s not that I don’t feel good nor don’t trust Richard concerning the safety position,
        It’s the lack of “known depth”
        But we ARE on the outside looking in

    • Sexcdex Xfact

      Very valid point

  • Stet Ross7777

    If We Don’t Add The Free Agents We Need On Defense As Follow : The Defensive Line Positions , Linebackers Positions , And , Our Secondary Position Number One Example Of A Team Who Wants To Win In 2018 The Los Angeles Rams If We Again Don’t Build Our Defense With Quality Veteran Free Agents We Will Be Heading For A 6 And 10 Record And / Or A 8 And 8 Record At Best ………. No Doubt!!!!!!!!

    • Sexcdex Xfact

      True
      Every team has revamped

      Very few, if any, has stood pact
      All the division leaders have complimented their strengths & strengthened their weaknesses

      We have to excel in personnel just to keep up not to mention prevails against them

  • Steve

    I believe that moving Jones to CB was spot on, but it did leave that hole at safety that we NEED to be comfortable with going forward because as things stand at the moment I’m NOT at that level of comfort for the safety group and believe that we will either before camp bring someone in via trade and it may very well be Thomas! Or after camp realize that we just can’t be that force that we wanna be with the group we have currently! Richard has a voice with all this and I believe if he wanted to bring in Thomas then it WILL happen someway somehow, but if Thomas isn’t traded to our boys there’s a good reason and Richard has his reasons and we should be confident about why whether it’s to much money or whatever!

  • Sexcdex Xfact

    I agree in that Richard maybe being conservatively positive
    But
    I also feel be knows they not only needs more depth, but upgrades as well
    Dallas lost Church, Wilcox, Carr & Claiborne
    That’s 2staring safeties gone that have been replaced by rookies except Frazier
    Heath’s play-time increased because of loss if starters, face it, he never supplanted anyone

    I also agree Dallas need a very competent veteran on the back-end & although I’d love Earl, with the right price, I’d also feel better with a slightly younger but suitable safety, also not too pricey

    Dallas isn’t finished in that dept. Be it Earl Thomas or Boston or one of the other leading free agents
    I feel the same with the Tightend situation, I just can’t see them settling for this for the season

    If Jeff Heath was as dominant to actually bring stability we’d only be looking for depth
    But we’re uncertain,,,, BIGG DIFFERENCE
    We’re one injury away for chaos in the safety position
    That’s not how Philly built their SB team last year, they were well balanced to withstand losses across the board
    We were not prepared last year, & so far not so good this year

    • Hammer33

      That’s true to a point. But it could be viewed that Heath supplanted church because they let him walk. They may have been looking to start Heath, who’s better in coverage, though not a strong against the run.

      Wilcox was never getting a second contract in Dallas.

      • Sexcdex Xfact

        Well, unless Jerry & Steven both lied
        They wanted to keep at least 2 of the secondary Church & Carr being named in interviews concerning not losing the free agents

        Both stability & not missing games were ideal for church & Carr

        But it simply Salary Cap Hell that forced them to let go
        Before they could figure up a proposal to both, they had sizeable offers Dallas simply couldn’t match

        Then they drafted 2DB’s with position-flex at both corner & safety in Woods & Awuzie

        Not to diminish Jeff Heath’s capabilities at all
        It just was too many expensive contracts,(bad business decisions), etc

        But things panned out just fine so far
        Except they didn’t take a safety at all where they are thinnest at
        And that’s not savy business either
        However I seriously doubt we’re done to say the least in addressing safety
        &
        Heath may STILL be a starter which I say best man up anyway
        I honestly want the absolute best 22players on the field at every snap of the football

        Now that our backs are no longer against the wall money wise, we can do just that

  • Will

    The only one I’d be happy with is Tre Boston, barring the unicirn ET trade

Star Blog

The Dallas Cowboys WR Position Battle is Heating Up

Brian Martin

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Dallas Cowboys WR Position Battle Heating Up 1

Earning a spot on the Dallas Cowboys final 53-man roster is going to be a lot tougher in 2018 then it has been in years past. There is no shortage of position battles taking place right now to earn one of those coveted openings, but it's the battle taking place at receiver that's gaining steam and starting to heat up.

The ultimate unknown right now is how many wide receivers the Dallas Cowboys choose to carry on their 53-man roster this season. Last year they decided to carry six, but they have been known to carry just five. Unfortunately, this means they will have to release some talented players and risk losing them to another team.

As things stand right now there may just be one, possibly two, roster spots up for grabs. I think the only thing we know for sure right now is Cole Beasley, Allen Hurns, Michael Gallup, and Tavon Austin are the only WRs who can feel secure their jobs are safe for 2018. Everybody else is playing a game of Survivor, just hoping their name isn't the one written down and their torch isn't snuffed out.

Terrance Williams' flame may be safe due to his current contract. The Dallas Cowboys can't save anything by releasing him, but it doesn't cost them that much either. It's unlikely he has a future with the team, so if someone were to prove themselves more worthy, his flame could be extinguished.

Terrance Williams

Dallas Cowboys WR Terrance Williams

Last season I thought Noah Brown was ready to unseat Williams, but that never really materialized. Unfortunately, Brown hasn't really shown up as much as I thought he would this offseason, and missing the game against the San Francisco 49ers last week didn't do him any favors either. This doesn't bode well for him moving forward.

Deonte Thompson was signed as a free agent to provide some veteran experience and speed to the passing game, but that in no way means his job is secure. He needs to do something to show up a little more because his age and salary means a younger up-and-coming WR could make him expendable.

Second-year WR Lance Lenoir Jr. might just be the receiver who has stirred things up the most. He has not only created a buzz for himself in offseason practices, but he was able to carry it over into the preseason last week against the 49ers. His arrow trajectory is definitely pointing upwards.

I'd definitely hate to be the one to decide who stays and who goes when final cuts are made. It's not going to be an easy decision to make, because the outcome will definitely have an impact on the team's success this year.

All of these players were brought into help Quarterback Dak Prescott and the passing game reach new heights, so making the wrong move could be detrimental. The number of wide receivers and who the Dallas Cowboys decide to keep might be the most important decision they make before the season starts.

How would you predict the Dallas Cowboys WR position battle turning out?



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Any Concern About Dan Bailey Not Playing Against 49ers?

Brian Martin

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Decision not to Play Dan Bailey against the 49ers a Concern? 1

With all the excitement of the Dallas Cowboys finally playing in a game last week against the San Francisco 49ers, it may have escaped your attention that Dan Bailey remained on the sideline the entire time. He didn't attempt one field goal or kick off once last Thursday, which in my opinion is a little concerning.

Dan Bailey joined Ezekiel Elliott and Sean Lee on the sideline as a healthy scratch last week. The decision to sit both Zeke and Sean Lee makes sense due to the physical demands of their positions, but sitting Bailey was a bit of a head scratcher. After all, it's not like he plays a physically demanding position like the other two.

I know. I know. Dan Bailey is an integral part for the Cowboys success moving forward. I'm not arguing that he's not, but after sitting out the majority of the 2017 season with a groin injury and lingering concerns about his health this year, not playing him at all against the 49ers is a bit confusing.

I don't believe there is any kind of kicking competition between Dan Bailey and Brett Maher, who handled all of the kicking duties against the 49ers last Thursday. Bailey will be the Cowboys kicker when the 2018 season gets underway in just a few short weeks. But, the question remains… Why didn't he receive any playing time?

Dan Bailey

Dallas Cowboys K Dan Bailey

Dan Bailey was never quite the same last season once he returned from his injury. Something was off and I don't know if it was more mental or physical, maybe a little of both. He just wasn't splitting the uprights like his normal self.

Unfortunately, we have seen this kind of thing happen in the past with one of the Cowboys kickers. Nick Folk went through a similar situation with an injury and never really bounced back. I'm just hoping history doesn't repeat itself.

Obviously, the Dallas Cowboys know more about what's going on with Dan Bailey than I do. But, you would think they'd have allowed him to attempt a field goal or at least an extra point in a game situation to build up his confidence once again. It's what I would have done.

Hopefully I'm just being a little paranoid and I'm reading more into this than there actually is. But, the fact I haven't heard any reasoning as to why Dan Bailey was held out last week is sitting a little uneasy with me. I'm just hoping it was precautionary in order to keep him as healthy as possible for the upcoming season.

Should we be concerned Dan Bailey was a healthy scratch last week?



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Star Blog

Week 1 NFC East Predictions and Cowboys Season Outlook

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Week 1 NFC East Predictions and Cowboys Season Outlook

Let me start this article with a strong opening statement: The Cowboys will be better in 2018 than they were in 2017. There's been a lot of talk about the lack of a true No. 1 receiver. But when we break it down, the current setup will most likely play out better for Cowboys QB Dak Prescott.

The Dak Stats

Certain quarterbacks shine when they have that go-to playmaker. We're talking about guys like Randy Moss, Terrell Owens, Calvin Johnson, Ocho Cinco, Tim Brown, Jerry Rice, and Dez Bryant. But other QBs do better at reading the defense and quickly adapting to what is given. Dak Prescott is the latter breed of QB.

Let’s do a quick numbers exercise to prove this.

When Prescott is targeting 8 or more receivers throughout the game, his passer rating jumps from 86.1 (targeting less than 8) to 104.5. He passes for almost 50 yards more per game and his touchdown to interception ratio drastically improves from 21-13 to 24-4.

Most importantly, when he targets at least 8 different receivers, the Cowboys are 14-2. When he targets less than 8, the team is just .500 at 8-8.

Without a doubt, Prescott is much better at adjusting to what the defense is giving him. He just isn’t one of those guys who can successfully "force" the ball (like Aaron Rodgers or Drew Brees). Not feeling the pressure of having to get the ball into the hands of the star playmaker will give this offense a new kind of depth in 2018.

Yes, losing Jason Witten hurts, much more so in my opinion than not having Dez.

Questions Still Loom

This is still the Cowboys' biggest concern on offense. There is some great depth. We have Rico Gathers, Blake Jarwin, Geoff Swaim, and the young stud out of Stanford, Dalton Schultz. But between the three who have any NFL experience, there are only 9 catches between them. I must say that Dalton, with his 4.75 40-yard dash, has a legitimate shot at seeing a lot of playing time in his rookie campaign and could become an impact player with his size (6’5”, 244-lbs) and speed.

But despite the battle for TE being wide open, and debates about whether or not the team needs a No. 1 receiver, the Cowboys are still expected to give the Eagles a run for their money in the NFC East. Here are the odds on the defending NFC East champions and how (although early) it is expected to shake out:

  1. Philadelphia Eagles -167
  2. Dallas Cowboys +350
  3. New York Giants +650
  4. Washington Redskins +750

NFC East Week 1 Predictions

The Cowboys open the season in a difficult road game against the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers have been listed as 2.5-point favorites (follow the Cowboys NFL Odds here all season long) which isn’t surprising considering they are a tough team playing at home. You might be thinking, "crap, we're opening up as underdogs?" Don’t worry too much; it actually bodes fairly well because the lines-makers generally give a 3-point advantage to the home team. This means that they actually handicap the Cowboys to be a half-point favorite on a neutral field and a 3.5-point favorite in Arlington.

The Redskins open their season in Arizona against the Cardinals. The line is set at a pick ‘em (meaning there is no point spread; it's anyone's game). But, looking at the 'Skins and Cardinals, I think Washington gets disappointed in Week 1 and starts their season with a loss.

The Giants get to test their new offensive line and see if they were right in continuing to place their faith in Eli Manning against the best defense in the league. The Jags are 3-point favorites at MetLife stadium. This means the Jags are actually 6-points better. I do think that the Giants will be vastly improved this season, but they are also going to open with a loss.

The Eagles don’t have it easy either, but they will probably pull out the win at home as 4-point favorites against the Dirty Birds on Thursday Night Football. Their defense is just too good. Atlanta's road offense scored just 21 points per game last year while Philly scores 28 on average at home. The Eagles' home defense has been downright nasty, only allowing 12 points per game in Philadelphia.

This will be a two-horse race for the division between the Eagles and Cowboys. And even if the Eagles win the East, the Cowboys will wildcard into the playoffs.



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