The Dallas Cowboys inch closer and closer to draft day having made just a few moves in free agency thus far. The acquisition of defensive tackle Henry Melton, while an excellent move, is hardly going to cure a defense that ranked near the bottom of nearly every defensive statistical category.
While Melton fills a big hole left vacant by Jason Hatcher, and the signing of Anthony Spencer looking more and more likely, the defensive line is still far from a strength. But in the least, the situation appears far less dire than it did only a few weeks ago.
The secondary is still a position where the Cowboys should focus their efforts.
Danieal Manning was on the market for a short time before striking a deal with the Cincinnati Bengals. Rumors had swirled that perhaps Dallas could be a good destination for the safety. But just as the rumors were coming out, the front office made it very clear that the Dallas defense was going to roll the dice on its young safeties.
The thought is scary, considering last year’s circus of a defensive effort, but does this truly mean that our options are the potent yet raw J.J. Wilcox, or dare I say the near useless Jeff Heath, or what about Matt Johnson? Does he even really exist?
Even the idea of having Barry Church in the secondary isn’t extremely comforting. Truthfully, he is great against the run but often seemed lost in the passing game. Perhaps, we’ll give him the benefit of the doubt though, considering he was probably having to compensate for his incompetent comrades.
None of this means that the Cowboys won’t scour the draft for the next Darren Woodson. Names like HaHa Clinton-Dix, Calvin Pryor, or even Craig Loston seem like picks that could definitely fill key holes in the secondary.
The plain and simple truth is that Dallas has to seek out a playmaker. It’s completely useless to seek out Gavin Escobar in the second round at tight end (wasn’t a position of need if you didn’t know), and wait to draft a safety in J.J. Wilcox in the fourth round (Darren please come back).
Dallas has to strike early and stop worrying about drafting another receiver or, so help me, another tight end.
The moves thus far give me confidence. Now we just have to wait for the draft to know how quickly we should expect to fall from cloud nine.