Q: What are the Cowboys going to do about a kicker? Are they going to draft one or let Buehler do all of the kicking? People continue to blame Romo for everything, but he can’t do it all. He isn’t Chuck Norris.
Amber Leigh Hartman, Southlake, TX
A: Actually Chuck Norris had a tryout in Dallas yesterday, so we’ll see if the Cowboys decide to sign him. The NFL likely won’t allow roundhouse kicks, though, so it is unlikely he will be effective.
In all seriousness, the Cowboys absolutely must make upgrading the kicker spot a priority this offseason. It is unlikely that they either draft a kicker or let Buehler kick full-time, though. Sure, it would be great to have Buehler kick field goals and not have to use two roster spots on kickers, but he is just nowhere near where he needs to be, in terms of accuracy, to step in be counted upon. Drafting yet another kicker, to us, also seems improbable, because the uncertainty that comes with a rookie kicker would probably be too much for Jerry Jones & Co. to take.
Kickers are like fine wine in that they generally get better with age, so expect Dallas to sign a veteran. They may be close to doing so, as they worked out the CFL’s most accurate kicker, Sandro DeAngelis, last Friday. DeAngelis connected on 42 of his 49 career attempts in five seasons with the Calgary Stampeders.
After the tryout, DeAngelis said, “I’m pleased with [the audition], but you really have no idea what they’re thinking. They don’t exactly jump up and down or anything so you don’t have a gauge of where you stand. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.”
Let’s keep our own fingers crossed that Dallas fixes the kicking situation in 2010.
Q: Do you see the Cowboys making any big trades before the season?
Joe Michotti, New York, New York
A: Probably not. They may try to get a late round pick or two for players that might not be around anyway, such as Cory Procter. The big names that many of you are screaming for the Cowboys to trade, such as Ken Hamlin, Marion Barber, and Flozell Adams, just have contracts that are too heavy for another team to take them on.
Remember, trading for a player is kind of like drafting one. You always want to receive value. When you trade for a guy that has a terrible contract, it is like drafting a player three rounds to early. The risk-to-reward ratio just isn’t there, and there is no reason to make the deal. Sure, the player may be talented and could help your team, but your squad could be improved even further be spreading out the cash to fill multiple needs.
Even in the upcoming uncapped year, teams are unwilling to overspend. Most organizations have set their own spending limit and, because of the uncertainty of the salary cap in coming years, are treating this season no differently than any other. Thus, the contracts that come with Hamlin, Barber, and Adams are a barrier to completing a trade.
If the Cowboys want to part ways with any big-money veterans, they will likely have to release them.
Next: An interview with Cowboys’ LB Jason Williams