While reading through current Dallas Cowboys articles on Saturday March 24th, 2012, one unsettling trend seemed to emerge quickly and consistently. Not one single news story on the main links page was addressing something positive accomplished in the 2012 free agency period. Let’s take a look at some of the stories of the day. First I’ll provide the headline in paraphrase form, to be followed with a hopefully relevant analysis and relation to the point of this article.
- Marion Barber to Retire
- Dallas Cowboys to Fight Cap Penalties
Next the cap penalty topic was broached. Right or wrong, win or lose, it still reeks from the poor decisions management makes when assembling the roster. I understand the thinking in that year, and also felt retaining Miles Austin was essential, yet also have to believe the Cowboys saw this turmoil coming and predicted likely and very costly ramifications. And today the limited available cap space is feeling the ripple effect from it, whether Jones admits it or not.
$5 mil of cap money will buy two very capable starters in this league. And would also buy two more next year when the final $5 mil of the penalty comes around. Two starter upgrades on a depth chart can very well be the difference between 8-8 and a successful playoff run. This league is truly a game of inches. Which Cowboys fans witnessed firsthand through 5 defeats by 6 points or less in 2011.
- Kevin Ogletree Re-signed by Cowboys for 1 year /$650,000
The subject here was the Cowboys retaining Kevin Ogletree to compete for the 3rd wide receiver spot. Lets not forget Kevin Ogletree has unsuccessfully competed for this spot when it was his for the taking the last two seasons. This is the same player Laurent Robinson made irrelevant when on the same roster last year. Ogletree graded out last of the 5 WR’s with only 57% of his targets being completions.
While spending the last three years with Dallas, he’s recorded under 300 yards receiving combined and yet to score a touchdown….a clear indication why he has not been able to lock down the third spot. As we’ve heard before, after three years in the league, you are what you are. Ogletree is a decent 4/5 WR with experience, yet typically vets in that position are more progress stoppers of younger guys than helpful.
The lack of addressing the third wide receiver position with an accomplished, veteran free agent outside of re-signing Ogletree is a glaring red flag. We all expect big things from Bruce Carter at ILB, but Jerry Jones had wonderful insight to sign Dan Connor as insurance and even solid depth at the position regardless of who starts. This may be the free agent move of the year with all factors considered.
With the ever important 3rd wide receiver position now open in Jason Garrett’s offense, we all expect big things from another green player in Andre Holmes. But where is any kind of solid veteran insurance at this key position? As for now, it’s Ogletree, and will be more costly than most realize if it remains void of a talented player above his level.
Topics: Anthony Spencer, Bernadeau, Bruce Carter, Cap, Center, Dallas Cowboys, Dan Connor, Defense, Draft, Draft Pick, Franchise Tag, Freeagency, Guard, Jeff Saturday, Jerry Jones, Kevin Ogletree, Laurent Robinson, Livings, Marion Barber, Nate Newton, Offense, Offensive Line, Penalties, Roster, Salary Cap, Samson Satele, Tight End, Tyron Smith