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Mailbag: Kellen Moore 2.0 Calling Plays?

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With Kellen Moore going into his second year as the OC/play caller, what changes do you see happening in year 2 under a new head coach? Do you believe he can "take the next step?"— TYLER BAEM / SAN ANTONIO, TX

David: I mentioned this on one of our podcasts last week. I don't think massive changes are needed, but I hope Kellen helps this offense avoid predictability. The Cowboys ran the ball far too often on first down last year, and they seemed to forget that play action is an incredibly effective way to expose defenses. If they could implement those two minor tweaks, I think it'd make a world of difference.

Rob: Overall Moore had a solid first year as the OC. The red zone might be the biggest area for improvement. The offense was much better in 2019 than 2018, when they ranked near-last in the league. But typically they weren't as consistent cashing in during the games they lost. I'm with Dave on the play-action and screen game. I think McCarthy's influence could add another layer of creativity with the way he has used wide receivers in the past. I also wonder if the ball will go down the field quite as much if there's more of a West Coast imprint.

With a new coaching staff in place and (on paper) a better-than-average free agent and draft class coming to Dallas, which player on offense and defense has the most to prove on a competitive roster?— SHAWN BLAKE / COLUMBIA, PA

David: This question immediately brings Trysten Hill to mind. The guy was obviously talented enough to be drafted highly, but his rookie season was such a disappointment. Now, he has to re-prove himself with a new coaching staff. I could see his career going in either direction. On offense, I'd say Connor Williams. He's been solid through two seasons, but now is the time to take another step. And if he doesn't, he could be facing some fierce competition for a starting job.

Rob: Can Dalton Schultz earn a larger role now that Jason Witten is a Raider? Or will Blake Jarwin and Blake Bell form the primary receiving/blocking duo? If you remember, Schultz arrived a couple years ago as a fourth-round pick, lauded for his all-around skill set. On defense, just give me the entire cornerback group. I can't remember a more wide-open competition on this team in the past 10 years – maybe receiver in 2018 after Dez Bryant was released.

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