I want to welcome another “Featured Writer” to the Silver and Blue Report team … Welcome, Ben and “Blogging Big D”. Randy
A new year already upon us shortly after the Dallas Cowboys lost to the Washington Redskins in what was basically the NFC East Championship. The Cowboys organization and fans alike want to put the disappointment of 2012 in the rear view mirror in hopes of a big 2013. Here are some things to look for in the next year:
1) Dez Bryant solidifies his status as a top receiver in the NFL
Dez Bryant had a monster season in 2012, really picking it up in the last half of the NFL season. He appeared motivated and focused, and seems to be playing for a big extension from Dallas when his contract year comes up in 2015. If you look at Bryant’s stats and compare them to Megatron’s, he was targeted much less than Megatron but they had almost the same number of receptions in their first three seasons. Of course, Megatron doesn’t have the help from other receivers taking pressure away from him like Bryant does, but Bryant still catches more balls thrown his way and isn’t getting the garbage yards Megatron gets when the game is out of hand (as it has been a lot for Detroit this season). Bryant also has a frame similar to Megatron, he’s just a few inches shorter. I believe Bryant will be right behind Megatron next year, and is a must-get for your fantasy teams.
2) The Cowboys will draft a DT that will see the field often in 2013
Many mock drafts, despite character concerns, point to Dallas choosing John Jenkins in the first or second round of the draft. He is a beast who can split time with Jay Ratliff early, and maybe even start at the nose position if Dallas wants to move Ratliff to the outside. Jenkins will not be stopped by a single lineman, and will consistently take up double and triple teams. This will hopefully allow DeMarcus Ware and possibly Spencer (see number 3) to run wild on the outside, and help out Bruce Carter and Sean Lee as well.
3) The Anthony Spencer Situation
Anthony Spencer is going to make a lot of money next year. The Cowboys likely will either place a franchise tag on him again, paying him much more than they really want to, or draft a DE/LB hybrid player like Ezekiel Ansah from BYU (Who you should look up if you haven’t seen him). Spencer had a monster season, racking up career highs in tackles and sacks. You can’t take that away from him, but you have to consider how many other players the Cowboys lost due to injury that would have been taking away from those stats with their own production.
4.Tidbits About The Offense
Last, but not least, I expect a few changes in the Cowboys’ offensive personnel. I doubt Dallas re-signs Kevin Ogletree, so expect Dwayne Harris to become the full-time number 3 receiver. Though it is unlikely, Dallas may shake things up by signing a free agent QB or drafting one to push for Tony Romo’s position. I also would not be surprised for Dallas to draft a running back late to try and find a steal like Washington did in Alfred Morris, especially considering how terrible the rushing offense was after Murray got injured. And last but (hopefully) not least I expect the Cowboys to take an offensive lineman early in the draft or look to free agency to improve the rocky performance of the O-line.