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Mailbag: Bringing On Other Veteran Free Agents? Handling Suspensions?

MIKE GRALEIGH, NC
I hear a lot about how the coaching staff highly values experience, especially in the system the team runs. I think the Justin Durant signing is proof of that. With that said, how come (when the defensive end depth looks so weak) they have not brought in guys like Jeremy Mincey and George Selvie, who both have contributed in this system in the recent past? Are they that high on the young guys at the position, or is that still a possibility deeper into camp?

Bryan: To be honest, I don't believe they really wanted to make the Durant move but were forced to due to what happened with McClain. Moving Anthony Hitchens to Mike full time means that they are going to need a backup to Lee at the Will. The fact that Durant can play all three spots helps here.  Stephen Jones has gone with the plan of using players for two seasons then moving on from them. Guys like George Selvie, Jermey Mincey and Nick Hayden fit that thinking. If they add a defensive player to the roster, I believe it's likely going to come from a waiver wire claim or trade. Younger, better option.  

David: I think you answered your own question, Mike. People inside the organization are very high on the guys they already have, and they're going to give them every opportunity to succeed. But we all know how training camp goes: guys get hurt and can't practice. Other obstacles arise. I think it's a pretty safe bet we see some new faces at training camp, once the grind really begins.

DAVID DORROUGHMILTON, FL
Will the suspensions for Gregory and Lawrence prevent them from working out with the team after the season starts? What presence will they still be involved with the team, if any at all?

Bryan:They are allowed to practice and play during the preseason but once the season starts they are allowed to be in the facility but not on the field. It is the one reason that you would keep McClain around for the 10 games in order to get him in shape for a potential stretch run. He might be a valuable addition at that time.

David:Rolando McClain is a bit of a different matter, given that he's on a 10-game suspension – and he hasn't exactly proven he's driven to get ready. In the grand scheme of things, though, the four-game bans for Lawrence and Gregory is somewhat manageable. Both guys will have the full season to knock the rust off, and then they can remain in the fold – attend team meetings, work out at the facility – for four weeks until they're ready. You'd like to think the Cowboys can keep them on pace for a month until they can play again.

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