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3 Pressing Questions: Broaddus On Need Positions, Free & Te'o

Posted Feb 25, 2013

INDIANAPOLIS - Football analyst Bryan Broaddus tackles three pressing questions for the Cowboys during this week’s scouting combine.

This week, Bryan talks about a few positions of need for the Cowboys, a possible switch on the offensive line and the biggest story of the entire combine.

This team has a lot of needs, including guard, safety, defensive tackle and running back. It seems like those are positions that are relatively deep in this year’s draft?

Broaddus: This draft is actually setting up for the scouts very well in regard to the positions that they are looking at. Traditionally guards do not go in the top half of the draft but this year might be the exception with Chance Warmack and Jonathan Cooper. Where the Cowboys sit that might have a chance for one of these guys but the question will it be Cooper or Warmack? After this Combine I promise that teams are going to go back and look at their boards and try to figure out if they would rather have Cooper over Warmack because of the athletic ability. At defensive tackle, it appears that Sharrif Floyd is higher on most team’s boards over Sheldon Richardson but either would be an outstanding fit in this 4-3 scheme of the Cowboys. A new twist at tackle might be the medical condition of Star Lotulelei who was the highest player on my board. Would teams pass on him that would allow him to slide down the board? Could the Cowboys get a shot to add the best one technique in the draft? Stay tuned to that story. Sylvester Williams and K.K. Short are also good options in the second round if the club goes say offensive line or safety in the first. As for the safeties, big fan of Kenny Varcarro and Johnathan Cyprien, either one would be a serious fit. Varcarro is the only first rounder I have at the position. The guy that I like later potentially is J.J. Wilcox of Georgia Southern. I will be very interested to see how he works out on Tuesday.

What are your thoughts about Doug Free possibly moving to guard? Does he have the body frame to play inside?

Broaddus: I honestly don’t like the CONSIDERATION of Doug Free moving to guard for the simple reason that I have always believed that the one thing that affects Tony Romo the most is not when he gets pressure off the edge but when he gets it right in his face. Why did the Cowboys commit free agent dollars in 2012 to try and get bigger inside? So Romo would have the ability to step forward to make his throws. We have all seen Free play and the one thing he struggles with the most is power and the ability to sit down on rushers. His punch tends to be too wide and rushers get inside on him, then carries him to the quarterback. Free might weigh 313 pounds but he really doesn’t play with that kind of strength. This draft will offer them the ability to get bigger and stronger inside with say a player like Larry Warford.

The biggest story of the combine has been Manti Te’o and how he’s handled all of the questions that teams have about his story. But can he play?

Broaddus:  If you watch the Alabama film you would say probably not but none of his defensive teammates were good that night but study USC or Stanford and you would see a different player. I do see a guy that is around the football and in the pile when it comes to making tackles. There are times where you see him over shoot the play and get fooled on the ball handling and fakes but he can get turnovers and create them as well. The best thing for him from the Combine was that he was able to answer all the questions about the off the field situation that he put himself in this season and try to put that behind him. I personally have Minter of LSU ahead of him just because I think he plays faster. Both players struggled with their 40 yard dashes at the Combine but at the Pro Days at their schools, I promise that you will see better times. The bottom line is if you are looking for a Mike linebacker that has a nose for the ball, he is dependable doing his job, he can help you.

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