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Mailbag: Are Cowboys' Linebackers Best in NFL? 


Do you think the Cowboys linebacker core of Micah Parsons, Anthony Barr and Leighton Vander Esch is the best in the NFL? – H. MELVIN / OCEAN CITY, NJ

Patrik: Whoa, Kemosabe. I'm all for detailing the potential of a player and/or group, but let's first see Barr on the practice field with Parsons, Vander Esch and, equally as important, a healthy Jabril Cox before we paint them as the best LB unit in the league. That's a tall order but, to be fair, the ceiling is certainly there for them to be the heartbeat of an already stout defense in Dallas, and especially with Dan Quinn leading them. I need to see them all on the field together (and/or in rotation) before I start passing out crowns, though.

Nick: Umm, probably so. At least that's the way it looks like now. And the reason of course is Micah Parsons. He's one of the very best players in football and he's technically a linebacker. Then you've got Anthony Barr and Leighton Vander Esch, not to mention Jabril Cox. But you're talking about three former first-round picks at one position. All of them have a combined six Pro Bowls and they're 30 years of age or younger. I'm not sure other teams can boast that stat right now. Of course, you can argue that LVE and Barr might not be at Pro Bowl level anymore, but let's find that out. It still comes back to Parsons. Name the other elite LBs in the NFL and let's see if they've got the cast around them.

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