I've been watching the mailbag all offseason and seen plenty of comments about how this team struggled without Zeke, without, Tyron Smith and without Sean Lee. But I haven't seen anyone mention losing Dan Bailey. He was out for a full five games I believe, and then not the same when he came back. How much did not having a cold-as-ice kicker hurt the team and the things they like to do over that stretch of the season.
Bryan: I consider Dan Bailey one of the best players on this squad. He's just as important as Tyron Smith or Dak Prescott. When things aren't going as well it's a big deal in how the team operates. The early questions when he was missing kicks was linked to his health but these trainers wouldn't put him on the field if that was the case. Bailey was just in a slump, plain and simple. What I do know about Bailey is that he's a mentally strong guy and I fully expect him to bounce back to form in 2018.
David:If you think back, it wasn't really Bailey's absence that affected the Cowboys last year. Mike Nugent was perfectly fine in his absence. The problem was simply that Bailey struggled down the stretch, which was obviously a big surprise. As with everything else, it's something worth keeping an eye on. But I'm not ready to worry about Dan Bailey until I see a larger sample size. I think he's going to be fine.
KEN HORNERALLENDALE, MI
With Cole Beasley only signed through 2018 and Ryan Switzer having a similar skill set, do you see the Cowboys not re-signing Cole Beasley?
Bryan:Could Switzer be a replacement for Beasley in the future? Sure he could. These players are similar in height and ball skills, but that's where it really stops. Beasley is a much quicker route runner. You see it when he's getting in and out of breaks. Switzer has more running back skills than Beasley with the ball in his hands. If the Cowboys draft Calvin Ridley, I could see them playing him some in the slot to take advantage of his ability.
David:I will say, you can see the logic. Beasley is in a contract year, and Switzer has a somewhat similar skillset. He could represent a chance to get younger and cheaper at the position. Me personally, though? I'd like to see Switzer get involved in the offense before I assume he can handle that role. I know Beasley had a down year last season, but he's no slouch.