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Mailbag: Has Micah Parsons Been Mismanaged?

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Hindsight is 20/20, but looking back, have the Cowboys mismanaged Micah Parsons this season? We've now reached the playoffs and he looks worn out. I just read something from DeMarcus Ware that I have been wondering myself and that is, do you think Parsons has taken too much of a beating as a full-time rusher? Would it have been better if he had played more linebacker to take advantage of his quickness and keep him fresh? – Mark Somma/Winchester, VA

Nick: Fresh for what? The playoffs? Are we assuming the Cowboys still make the playoffs. I've got a loss to the Bengals if he's not rushing the QB. Maybe a loss to the Rams. That Detroit game is questionable, too. And there would be others as well. My point is that the reason you're here right now is because he plays the way he does and rushes the way he does. I think the element of surprise with Parsons has lifted the entire defense. I just can't see where this defense would be leading the league in takeaways if he wasn't rushing the passer like he has. Sorry, I can't go there with you.

Patrik: Yea, I hate to hit everyone with an "I told you so" here, but I'm gonna. One of the biggest reasons I've been pounding the table against all who wanted to make Parsons a full-time defensive end is the physicality of the position, i.e., he's going to get beat up a hell of a lot more by very large offensive lineman who are squared up with him pre-snap than when he's operating freely as a linebacker coming downhill. His several stints on the injury report bear that out, along with his own confession regarding playing DE vs. LB, and I'd like to see him get moved around more — as he was last year. He'll make an impact no matter where he plays, but his versatility is his biggest attribute (the other reason I pounded the table) so I'd like to see it utilized more.

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