If the Dallas Cowboys fail in 2016, don't forget these three things: Tony Romo's collarbone, PEDs, and purple drank. The aftermath of which leave the Cowboys with a few more question marks heading into the 2016 season.
How will the team perform if Tony Romo misses time?
Dallas has been one of the worst teams in the NFL when it comes to winning without their starting quarterback. A record of 1-13 over the past three seasons without Romo solidifies that truth.
However, Dak Prescott is putting faith back into the backup quarterback position.
In year's past, this team was truly Tony Romo-or-bust. Now? I'm not so sure. Prescott has shown he can at least be a backup who poses a legitimate threat to opposing defenses, in the air and on the ground. He posted near-impeccable stat lines in both of his preseason games thus far. The health of Tony Romo remains important, but it may no longer spell life and death for this team.
Where is the pass rush coming from?
In 2014, when the team lost 26-21 to the Green Bay Packers in the divisional round, Aaron Rodgers was hardly touched. He was playing on one leg too, by the way. It was this -- not Dez Bryant's "catch" or DeMarco Murray's fumble -- truly at the heart of the loss.
If the Cowboys hope to take the next step, they must get after the quarterback.
Suspensions are currently killing that idea.
DeMarcus Lawrence -- the team's best threat to apply pressure -- will miss 4 games.
Randy Gregory and Rolando McClain may very well see no snaps this year.
Talent within Dallas' front-seven is thin, and players need to step up. Can newly signed players Benson Mayowa and Cedric Thornton produce? Thornton is already looking like a nice addition. The consistent health of Sean Lee and Tyrone Crawford are also concerns.
It basically seems like Dallas will need some pleasant surprises to truly succeed on the defensive line. Maybe drawing up some more creative blitz packages can alleviate the pressure on the front-four. Situational defense may be the best recipe for success at this point, though.
This unit will have to rely on a repeat of 2014. The defense needs the offense to dominate in time of possession, allowing for timely defensive stands, sacks, and turnovers. Keeping this group fresh will be imperative.
Other than Dez Bryant, who will step up in the passing game?
I'm the most satisfied I have been in years with the Dallas offense, on paper. With that being said, they must be elite through the air in 2016 to compliment their running game.
I have the biggest love/hate relationship with Terrance Williams.
Some games, he plays like a great WR2 with deep threat ability. Then the next week he goes missing without any targets. Drops and inconsistency have held him back from being a reliable number 2.
I love what I'm seeing from Brice Butler so far, and hope to see him grow more with Tony Romo. He already has a nice rapport with Dak Prescott.
Look for this offense to utilize the pass-catching skills of Ezekiel Elliott as well.
BREAKING: Cowboys Sign Ex-Packers WR Randall Cobb
According to multiple sources, the Dallas Cowboys have signed former Green Bay Packers Wide Receiver Randall Cobb to a one-year deal to help bolster their depth at the WR position and potentially become Cole Beasley's replacement.
Cowboys are giving former Packers' WR Randall Cobb a one-year, $5 million deal, per source. https://t.co/8KWFPjSP8T
The Dallas Cowboys met with Randall Cobb earlier this week, but he eventually left Dallas without a contract. He must've had a change of heart or just needed time to ponder the Cowboys offer, but regardless of what transpired in that short time he is now part of America's Team.
During his time with the Packers, Cobb accumulated 470 receptions for 5,524 receiving yards and 41 touchdowns. The eight-year veteran will now be expected to replace some of Cole Beasley's production out of the slot for the Dallas Cowboys.
After years of watching Beasley as the Cowboys slot WR, it will be really interesting to see Randall Cobb in that role. He's not as quick twitched as No. 11, but can be just as dangerous due to his ability to be more of a down the field receiver. He also brings added value in the return game and could compete with Tavon Austin to become the return specialist.
This could mean the Cowboys forgo drafting a wide receiver early in the 2019 NFL Draft, but I wouldn't put it past them. Regardless of what happens, this is an excellent addition.
Welcome to Cowboys Nation Randall Cobb!
REPORT: Dallas Cowboys Re-sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur
L.P. Ladouceur is returning for his 15th season as the Cowboys' long snapper. The veteran free agent was re-signed by Dalals today to a one-year deal.
Thanks to Jason Witten's one-year sabbatical with Monday Night Football, Ladouceur has now been with the Cowboys for more consecutive seasons than any current player. He just turned 38 last week, but Louis-Philippe remains one of the top long snappers in football.
The Cowboys have signed long-snapper L.P. Ladouceur to a one-year deal worth $1.03 million and $90,000 in bonus money, but he will count $735,000 against the cap. This will be Ladouceur's 15th season with the Cowboys, tying Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Mark... https://t.co/2iDsi6RX7e
Retaining Ladouceur is an underrated move for the Cowboys given their situation at kicker.
Brett Maher was only 80% accurate overall on field goals last year. The team could be considering an upgrade in free agency.
Whether they bring Maher back or try someone new, having a long snapper with Ladouceur's performance perfection will make things much easier for them.
REPORT: Cowboys Negotiating Trade with Dolphins for DE Robert Quinn
According to a report just minutes ago, the Dallas Cowboys are visiting with Miami Dolphins' Defensive End Robert Quinn today as part of a possible trade. Miami is looking for a trade partner to try to get something back for Quinn before making him a salary cap casualty.
Quinn is in the final year of his contract and is set to count $12.9 million against the Dolphins' salary cap. Most of that is his base salary of $11.8 million, which Miami is reportedly willing to pay part of to help facilitate a trade.
Robert Quinn was spotted today on his way to visit the #Cowboys, who are in trade talks with the #Dolphins for the veteran DE, sources say. Quinn would need to agree to any deal. So, this is another step in the process, with a Dallas team that obviously needs pass rush.
The Cowboys need DE help with DeMarcus Lawrence's contract still unresolved and Randy Gregory now indefinitely suspended for another drug policy violation. They signed Kerry Hyder from the Lions yesterday, but he isn't a proven commodity like Quinn.
Turning 29 in May, Robert Quinn is a two-time Pro Bowler and former first-round pick of the Rams. He hasn't had the same production in recent years but still had 6.5 sacks for Miami in 2018 and 8.5 the prior year with Los Angeles.
Ever the bargain shoppers these days, Dallas is probably hoping to get Quinn for late-round draft pick or perhaps a pick swap.
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