Team Needs: Dallas Cowboys
NEEDS RATING KEY
5.0 - High priority. This is a position that is a glaring weakness and there is the likelihood that this team cannot compete next year without making a major addition here.
4.0 - Medium Priority. This is an area that is an obvious weakness, but the team isn't quite desperate to make a major move here possibly because they have some young potential. But this is an area that if the team cannot fix via free agency, will definitely use one of their picks in the first three or four rounds to supplement.
3.0 - Upgrade Potential. This is a position that isn't a weakness per se, but there is significant room for an upgrade. If the right player comes along they will certainly snag him, but if they don't fix this position with a major free agent addition or early round pick, then it's not the end of the world.
2.0 - Depth Need. An area where there is a need to add depth. Perhaps there is an aging veteran and they might want to start to look at grooming his heir apparent or replacement. Not likely to be a high priority and a position that more than likely will be address in the middle and late rounds rather than with a top pick.
1.0 - Future Need. This is an area that is not a priority, and doesn't initially appear as a need. But there is some room to develop some depth for perhaps two or more years down the line. This is usually an area that a team will look at in the late rounds if at all.
0.0 - Non-need. This is a position that is a strength of their team, they have a solid starter, capable depth, and/or a young player at the position that they like and want to develop. Very little possibility this area is addressed and would be the equivalent of a wasted draft pick.
Top 10 Needs
1. CB - 4.0
2. OC - 3.5
3. OG - 3.0
4. LB - 3.0
5. S - 2.5
6. DT - 2.5
7. QB - 2.0
8. OT - 1.5
9. RB - 1.5
10. RET - 1.5
Quarterback - Despite the criticism leveled at Tony Romo, he had a solid year. But the lack of postseason success from this team will cause an increasing amount of fingers to be pointed at him regardless of if it's his fault. Jon Kitna is expected to retire, and Stephen McGee was unimpressive in his brief stint in the lineup. The Cowboys could be looking at a veteran or potentially a new developmental option to push McGee. NEED: 2.0
Running Back - DeMarco Murray was solid until he got hurt. Felix Jones is a solid No. 2 option, but given the high degree of injuries that have occurred at this position, adding another backup won't be a bad move. NEED: 1.5
Fullback - Tony Fiammetta performed well here, but they have good depth with Shaun Chapas also on the roster. NEED: 0.0
Wide Receiver - Laurent Robinson was a very good No. 3 receiver and is a free agent. They want him back and the feeling is mutual from his end. If that deal gets done, their need here is minimal with Kevin Ogletree, Dwayne Harris, and Jesse Holley begin solid developmental depth options. NEED: 1.0
Tight End - Martellus Bennett is a potential free agent, and doesn't seem likely to return. John Phillips has flashed potential so it's unlikely they would make a major move here. But they could draft some late round depth. NEED: 1.0
Offensive Tackle - They might flip-flop Tyron Smith and Doug Free, but either way they are pretty solid here. But they might add a backup for the sake of depth. NEED: 1.5
Offensive Guard - Derrick Dockery and Montrae Holland are free agents, and along with Kyle Kosier make up a serviceable trio of starters. But they would really like to continue upgrading this position with a young version of Leonard Davis. NEED: 3.0
Center - Phil Costa struggled at this position, and it's likely this will be a priority to upgrade this off-season. NEED: 3.5
Defensive Tackle - They're tinkering with moving Jay Ratliff to end, which would make Josh Brent the top nose tackle on the roster. While Brent has been a solid role player, it remains to be seen if he's ready to be more of a full-time player. They also like Sean Lissemore, but whether Ratliff makes a permanent move will likely require them to find a more reliable upgrade here. NEED: 2.5
Defensive End - If Ratliff moves here, it will upgrade this position, but as of now they are solid with Jason Hatcher, Marcus Spears, and Kenyon Coleman as their trio. Depth is pretty good with Lissemore also in the mix here. NEED: 1.0
Linebacker - Bradie James is a free agent that is not expected to return. They look keen on moving forward with Sean Lee and Bruce Carter as the pair of guys in the middle. Keith Brooking could return, but only as a reserve. On the outside, Anthony Spencer is a free agent, but unless they tag him it's not likely he'll be back. If so, that would open up a hole here for a more dynamic pass rusher, something they're already desiring. NEED: 3.0
Cornerback - Terence Newman looks like he's on the verge of getting cut, but Orlando Scandrick is not a viable option to be anything more than a nickel corner. So that would open the door for them to make a major move to try and solidify this spot. NEED: 4.0
Safety - Sensabaugh was given an extension in December, and Abram Elam was a serviceable starter, but is a free agent. He could be back since there probably won't be a strong market for his services, but there's definitely room for them to groom his successor at free safety. NEED: 2.5
Kicker - Dan Bailey was rock-solid as an injury replacement for David Buehler. Buehler could return for the final year of his contract to provide competition, but this position is not a need. NEED: 0.0
Punter - Mat McBriar had a foot injury late in the year, but they have Chris Jones to give them insurance in case he's slow to come back in 2012. NEED: 0.0
Return Specialist - They thought Dwayne Harris would solidify this spot and while he has flashed potential, he's far from a sure bet. So they might bring in a corner that could provide some more competition here. NEED: 1.5
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