EL PASO, TX
Do you believe in the "injury prone" label or just players having bad luck? Some guys are able to "shake" the label and some aren't. If they can't shake it, like Sean Lee, why don't teams take steps to avoid injuries? More specifically, like keeping Sean Lee out of full speed team drills during OTA's?
Nick: I do believe in injury-prone labels. I also believe in bad luck. I think Sean Lee is somewhere in the middle. But you can't be saying that if a guy like Lee is hurt a lot, then just leave him out of drills. He'd be the last guy you could keep out of that. And it sends a wrong message to the rest of the team. Remember the rule changes this summer and the schedule being pushed back. They have to get these practices in and it wasn't really a full-speed drill. Injuries like that can happen in the backyard.
David: It's a really interesting question, because what exactly makes a guy more likely to get hurt than another? Is it genetic? I don't know. But leaving guys out of practices just isn't a very viable option for a variety of reasons. This time is important for players to grow together – especially at a position like linebacker, where there are so many new faces. Also, with practice time in the NFL as limited as it already is, players need the reps. If that wasn't enough, I'm not sure Sean Lee would allow himself to be taken off the field if healthy. He's that competitive.
FORT BRAGG, NC
I remember when Amobi Okoye was a highly sought after draft selection but I don't hear too much about him in the Cowboys media. Do you think he has shown anything that would make us believe he could be a really good player? Or do you think that he will just be a successful part in the defensive line rotation?
Nick:Lot of questions there. Don't really have the answers yet. Yes, he was a top draft pick but don't expect that kind of production at all. I think the best they can hope for is a solid rotational player in the middle. But those guys are certainly needed. Let's see how he develops here this [embedded_ad] summer but he definitely won't have a better coach to help this process than Rod Marinelli, who has coached him before in Chicago.
David: I'm not going to get my expectations up until we see what he can bring to the pass rush in live action. Just last summer, the Cowboys signed a relatively well-known defensive lineman in Anthony Hargrove, and he didn't make it to training camp. The eventual starting left end, George Selvie, was basically an unknown before he notched two sacks in the Hall of Fame Game. We'll see how it plays out, but I think Marinelli is just trying to accumulate bodies that can potentially contribute.