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Mailbag: Assigning Duties In The Secondary? Who Is The Second-Best Skill Player?

ERIC BASS

CAMAS, WA

If I remember correctly, one of reasons the cowboys liked Byron Jones at safety was his ability to match up with the talented TEs in the league. With his move to CB, who do you see on the roster that would be most capable handling that duty now?

Bryan: Thanks to the talent influx at cornerback, I think there’s a number of different ways to handle that. Firstly, I think you could just let Byron do it by simply moving Anthony Brown or Jourdan Lewis outside when you want Byron to go inside. If you don’t want to do that, I think you could ask Xavier Woods to do it – assuming there’s someone on the roster who can handle safety duties. 

David: This is a great question. I am not sure they want to put Xavier Woods on those tight ends due to his lack of height. Jeff Heath makes sense because he has done it before, but I was told they want to keep him deep due to his ability to drive on the ball. Tyree Robinson is an interesting prospect due to his length and ability to cover. We could see Jones continue in that role some with Woods and Anthony Brown helping out in other spots. They do have options here it appears or they could just continue with Jones as they’ve done in the past.


FRED KREIN

MINOT, ND

Going into this season, Zeke Elliot is clearly our best player at the skill positions.  With all the roster turnover and J.Witt's retirement, who do you think is the second best now?

Bryan: I’ll always have faith in what Cole Beasley can do. Opponents just found a way to take him out of the game last year, but I don’t see that happening this season. These coaches realize how much his lack of production hurt the offense and will find a way to get him going again. A guy to keep an eye on is Tavon Austin. His explosiveness is impressive and getting him touches is not a bad idea at all. You can see defenses buckle when the ball gets in his hands. He puts a ton of pressure on tacklers to get him on the ground quickly before he does damage.

David: Good question, and I don’t think there’s a clear cut answer. I think Cole Beasley deserves credit for his route running ability and his hands. But I’m so intrigued by what Allen Hurns might be able to do in this offense. I don’t know if he’s the guy who can continually draw double-coverage, the way Dez Bryant did in his prime, but I think he’s perfectly capable of doing damage from both outside and the slot. If he can stay healthy, I think he can thrive here.

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