Presented by

Cowboys Mailbag: January 20, 2012

/ Editor's Note: Each weekday,'s writers will field two questions from the fans. Click here to email your question now. **

LANCE GIVENS WITCHITA, KS: What were your first impressions of the new coaches, Bill Callahan and Jerome Henderson?

Rob:Liked what Henderson said about demanding great technique and discipline from his secondary. Liked what Callahan said about taking pride in developing young offensive linemen. Those are the goals for both coaches. Callahan does have a very good reputation, as Jason Garrett said. Henderson's a younger coach, but he knows exactly what Rob Ryan wants based on their experience together in Cleveland.

Josh: Both of them did well in front of the cameras and fielding questions from reporters, but there was no way one could have gleaned how they'll fit with these players. I think Henderson being a younger guy who played the position recently could benefit him with the defensive backs, and Jason Garrett raved about Callahan's ease of communication. That came across.

JOHN DEBOIS CUMMING, GA: Jason Garrett wouldn't rule out a new scheme on defense - does this mean they could go to a 4-3? What personnel changes would they have to make, in that case?

Rob: Have to remember that the Cowboys weren't in a base 3-4 as much as one might think. They played a lot of nickel with a four-man line against more and more spread offenses. And Ryan is always mixing and matching his personnel. He coached in New England, where Bill Belichick alternates between 3-4 and 4-3. My guess right now is that Ryan's principles don't change much, but maybe there will be a little more base 4-3 depending on matchups.

Josh: Maybe we could see them running some of both, as Bill Belichick and Parcells have done. They did that a bit last year, though not often in base situations. Nickel downs, obviously, there will be four down linemen. As the game evolves, it won't be long at all before the nickel unit is on the field more than the base. So, a pure pass rusher opposite Ware could be valued over get someone who plays the run pretty well, like an Anthony Spencer. You'd love to get some more pass rush from the middle, too.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content