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Mailbag: Could Dallas Switch To A 3-4 Defense?


Looking at the big bodies up front and with Micah Parsons being more of an edge rusher, are there any thoughts of the Cowboys maybe moving back to a 3-4 defense? Can they switch defensive fronts during the game? Do they have enough linebackers and safeties to do this? Can it be addressed in the draft? – Dan Flores/Crestview, FL

Nick: Lots of questions here and I'll start with the last one – yes they can address this in the draft. We saw a team transform into a 3-4 with one draft back in 2005, getting four huge pieces, including DeMarcus Ware. I do think they've got the personnel to play either defense, especially with Hankins in the middle, and a guy like Chauncey Golston who can play defensive end. I'm not sure how D-Law and Armstrong would fit into a 3-4 scheme. LVE would probably be just fine but still would need more. And yes, Parsons could fit just about anywhere. I would think if we saw a change, it would be more of a game-to-game thing and not a permanent move.

Mickey: Let's not overthink things. The Cowboys have two years of experience in Dan Quinn's defense and have improved from Year 1 to Year 2. There is something to be said for continuity. Let's start with DeMarcus Lawrence. He's a 4-3 defensive end. Not athletic enough to stand up as an outside linebacker in a 3-4 and not big enough to be a 3-4 defensive end. And as for those big guys inside, not sure the Cowboys have enough quality guys to play the two inside spots in a 4-3. Remember, Neville Gallimore is in the final year of his contract and Johnathan Hankins is playing on a one-year deal. But if you ask if the Cowboys could use another defensive tackle somewhere in the draft, I'd be all for it.


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