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Mailbag: Compensatory Picks In 2016? Predict The First Half Of The Season

RUSS HAYESHOPKINSVILLE, KY
Maybe this is too obvious to ask, but would the Cowboys be as free making trades for Swaim during the draft and for Michael if they weren't expecting so many compensatory picks next year? And do you guys have a guess what those additional picks are likely to be?

David: That's a fantastic point, and it is something the Cowboys should benefit from in 2016 when you consider free agency losses like Jermey Parnell, Dwayne Harris, Bruce Carter and Justin Durant. The formula for compensatory picks seems like a yearly mystery, but it's a decent guess that the Cowboys could be in line for a handful of picks.

Bryan:The decision to sign Greg Hardy wipes out the compensatory pick they would have gotten for DeMarco Murray, which would likely have been a third rounder. The one that has a chance to bring a decent pick would be Parnell, based on his playing time with the Jaguars. You could see a sixth for Harris and likely just one other selection for Carter and Durant in the seventh.

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JEFFREY MARTINWILLIAMSPORT, MD
What do you think is the Cowboys record after eight games? Those first eight are all pretty tough. An 8-0 start would be great, but what do you think we need to be after the first eight?

David: The first half honestly looks pretty brutal. You've got your four toughest division games, a visit to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome and home games against both Super Bowl participants. I think 6-2 is possible, but 5-3 sounds more realistic.

Bryan: I am going with 5-3 to start the season -- then 5-3 to finish the year. If my LSU math is correct, that would make them 10-6 with a shot at the division. I will also say that I don't see the Cowboys or Eagles running away with this division.  My gut says it's going to be tight the entire way. 

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