Cutting DeMarcus Ware shaves off $7.5 million off the cap – done.
Jason Hatcher got a $27 million deal in Washington. For a soon-to-be 32-year-old who has only had one great season in his eight-year career and was clearly looking to break the bank somewhere, the Cowboys simply said no thanks.
The Cowboys are thinking economically here, but what do you get when you take the two best players away from the worst defense in franchise history? Ouch, who really wants to find that out?
The only thing that seems a little odd by these moves, or non-moves, is the fact the Cowboys didn't appear to be in a rebuilding-mode earlier this offseason. The idea to keep Jason Garrett in the fold as head coach, suggests to everyone Jerry Jones and company believes this team can still win right now, and get over that 8-8 hump.
We all know Garrett's leash has to be ultra-short. Admittedly, I never thought Garrett could go 8-8 again and lose in the final game of the regular season with the NFC East title on the line, and still keep his job. But he did. We all have to think this is the final year he can stay without making the playoffs.
So in this make-or-break season for Garrett, the Cowboys are losing two mainstays on defense? There's no way he can be completely happy with this.
Right now, if you polled every media member or fan, the consensus Super Bowl picks would probably be Denver vs. Seattle again, or Denver vs. New Orleans. But the Broncos and Saints are selling out this year to go win a title.
The Cowboys appear to be just selling.
And judging off fans' reaction on emails, the only thing that seems bothersome isn't just letting Ware and Hatcher go, it's the perception of [embedded_ad] trading those two, along with Miles Austin, for the signings of Terrell McClain and Jeremy Mincey. Yeah, I didn't know them, either.
I would imagine if the Cowboys can figure out a way to make some sort of splash here, whether it's with Henry Melton or anyone name-worthy, Cowboys Nation will feel better about this.
The Cowboys simply needed everything on defense. They need backup help, just like they need starters. I would imagine Mincey can come in and possibly be like Selvie, and McClain will push Nick Hayden for a starting job.
Clearly, the Cowboys are telling us this: Rod Marinelli can work his magic with the defensive line. It's risky, but last year was proved he could get the best of what he had to work with. Let's not forget that "magic" couldn't get the Cowboys from being the NFL's worst defense, by far.
Garrett hasn't publicly voiced his opinion about Hatcher and Ware. If he did, he'd probably say something about them being "outstanding football players and have been for a long time."
But those outstanding football players don't play for him anymore. And it doesn't appear like Garrett has "a long time" to try to replace them and their production.