Monday, April 7, 2014

I normally love, but...

I was very disappointed in their review of Dallas Cowboys' team needs. 

"Dallas Cowboys (Last Year: 8-8) 

Season Summary:
Different year, same results. The Cowboys always find some way to screw up, and it apparently doesn't matter who the quarterback is. Whether it's icing the kicker, wasting timeouts or checking out of running plays when trying to bleed the clock, something always goes wrong, and Dallas seems to finish 8-8 no matter what."

So far that's all fair.  Then they go off the track.

"Team Needs:
  1. General manager: Some analysts like Phil Simms and Daryl Johnston inexplicably love to kiss Jerry Jones' butt, even when he drafts third-round centers in the first round, but the fact remains that the Cowboys' owner desperately needs to hire a general manager to handle football operations. Jones has proven that he has no idea what he's doing.

  2. Two Defensive Tackles: The Cowboys will probably have to spend one of their top draft choices on a defensive tackle. The situation was dire at one of the spots this past season, and now Jason Hatcher won't be returning because he's too expensive. Signed Henry Melton and Terrell McClain

  3. Two Defensive Ends: DeMarcus Ware was cut. Anthony Spencer won't be back next year. George Selvie is a good situational pass-rusher, but Dallas needs two starters. An option could be available at No. 16 overall this May. Signed Jeremy Mincey

  4. Strongside Linebacker: When defenders like Ernie Sims and DeVonte Holloman are playing major snaps for the defense, something absolutely needs to be done.

  5. Guard: The Cowboys might get away with one of Ronald Leary and Mackenzy Bernadeau starting, but they can't have both on the field. Perhaps Brian Waters will return.

  6. Safety: J.J. Wilcox was a third-round rookie this past season. He didn't play very well, but Dallas may give him another chance. Still, the team could stand to bring in another safety.

  7. Running Back Depth: DeMarco Murray is injury-prone, so the Cowboys should think about obtaining another running back for depth purposes.

  8. Wide Receiver Depth: Miles Austin-Jones is not expected back next year because of cap reasons. If he's let go, Dallas will need to add another receiver for depth."

1) Pointless cheap shot at Jerry Jones.  OK, Everyone loves taking shots at Jerry Jones, but history suggests Jones landed the better player in the first round last year. Travis Fredrick looks like a 10 year starter and maybe a pro bowl player at some point.  The jury is very much out on Shariff Floyd.

WalterFootball's staff may have a little butt hurt in that they were part of the vast majority (say 75%) that thought Fredrick was maybe even a fourth round grade due to a lack of footspeed/athleticism. (They would later upgrade him to a 2nd/3rd round grade.)  The Cowboys were among the minority opinion (~25%) who thought Fredrick was just athletic enough and had Fredrick as a player likely to go at the top of the second.  It only takes one team to like a player and there were apparently a few that did like Fredrick.  (Long time Colts GM Bill Polian liked him as an early second rounder and spelled out that several teams did as well.)  The Cowboys took him at the end of the first in front of that possibility and it looks like a very smart move today.

The idea that Jerry doesn't know what he is doing as a GM doesn't really hold up.  You have to be good at some things to keep a team around 500 in the NFL . A much more accurate statement is that Jerry Jones has proven to have major behavioral flaws as a GM that prevent him from taking the next step with his team.
4) A vague shot that is not up to Walter Football standards.   The argument is that Dallas needs a Strongside LB. That should have been focused on, instead they talk about two guys who were supposed to be bench fodder who played --- not why they played.  Dallas signed FA Justin Durant to fill one of their LB spots, but he was fought hamstring injuries all year.  He was OK when he was healthy --- he just wasn't healthy much.  What do the Cowboys think of him for the coming year?  That's something that should be discussed in arguing for him to be replaced.

Ernie Sims was signed to be depth a few years ago.  DeVonte Holloman was a 7th round pick who was forced into the starting lineup last year.   He flashed some decent play when he did play.  These guys are treated in a shoddy fashion that shows little attention to detail and only reflects poorly on WalterFootball

6) A lack of insight in this point.  JJ Wilcox is a guy who only played safety his senior year in college.  Dallas knew they were drafting a very raw player last year.  He went in the third because he has very good talent and plays a physical brand of football. On draft day, Dallas' secondary coach was bordering on orgasmic to land him. Dallas likes his talent.  It is very likely that Dallas expects Wilcox to show a lot more this year.  There is none of this in WalterFootball's assessment.

The point that Dallas could very well draft another safety is a valid one.  Dallas has needed two average or better safeties for quite a while. Maybe they feel they cannot wait for Wilcox That argument is fine. Being totally lacking in insight in looking at why is just disappointing.

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