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Mailbag: Effects Of Losing Bill Callahan? Considering QB In The Next Draft?


How much of the offensive line's struggles so far could be attributed to losing Bill Callahan to the Redskins, who are running pretty well so far, rather than losing Murray to the Eagles?

David: It's a valid point, in my opinion. The Redskins are rushing for a whopping 4.6 yards per carry and 171 yards per game, while the Cowboys sit at a pedestrian 3.4 yards per carry and 94.5 yards per game. I still think it's a bit of a small sample size, though. The Cowboys have played two games, and in those two games they've fallen behind by double digits and lost their starting quarterback – both of which are factors that might affect the ground game. There's no question that it needs to improve, though – especially with Tony Romo sitting out. A great place to start would be to clean up the penalty issues.

Rob: The numbers don't show it, but the backs ran well with the space they had against the Eagles. It's not an easy defense to run against – DeMarco Murray had 51 carries for 154 yards (3.0 average) in two games last year. Combine that with the penalties and a lot of the two-minute stuff they were in against the Giants, and the backs have been in some odd situations so far. That being said, yes, Bill Callahan has pretty much delivered in the run game wherever he's been and it's working in Washington so far. Cowboys offensive line coach Frank Pollack was involved with the scheme here under Callahan and I think things will loosen up. But it's a point well taken because they've got to help out Brandon Weeden going forward.


Considering his recent injury history, does this latest injury to Tony Romo force the Dallas front office to think about using a high draft pick on a future replacement at QB?

David: If there's one thing I've learned about the Cowboys' drafting tendencies in recent years, it's that I don't think they're going to be "forced" into anything. They've had an eye on the quarterback position for at least a couple of years, but it hasn't fallen right with their board. It's certainly something they'll consider – I'd go as far as to call it a priority. But a broken collarbone doesn't seem like the type of injury that's going to affect Tony Romo's timeline for retirement, and I don't think it's going to lead to any drastic draft decisions.

Rob: Will the front office think about it? Of course – they think about every single scenario leading up to the draft. By that time, Tony Romo will be 36 years old, and he won't play forever. Romo's undrafted story aside, history shows if you don't take one in the first couple of rounds you probably won't hit on a franchise guy. But it's got to fit with their draft board. They're not going to reach for a developmental quarterback, for instance, when there's a potential impact player like Randy Gregory sitting at No. 60.

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