I'm not criticizing Cowboys' leadership here. I love the team's makeup. But what have the Eagles done since their disastrous 4-11-1 season in 2020 that the Cowboys could learn from? What takeaways are there from the Chiefs' ability to sustain success? – Billy Trompeter/Oklahoma City, OK
Patrik: Asked and answered in Monday's mailbag (hint: go check it out for a more detailed answer), but I contend the version of the Cowboys that slapped around the Vikings and hung 40 points on the Eagles defense could have competed in this year's Super Bowl; and the only reason they didn't is because of execution. To that point, having the roster the Cowboys did (added Anthony Barr, Jason Peters, T.Y. Hilton, Dante Fowler and KaVontae Turpin in 2022) gave them the personnel to be a Super Bowl team, and the coaching led them through enormous adversity to a 12-5 season without a single two=game losing streak. The Eagles went all-in at free agency, more so than the Cowboys did, true, but it didn't get them a ring. They will be a problem for a while to come, however, and the Cowboys must come to terms with that fact but, contrarily, the Eagles are simply responding to the Cowboys being the latest problem in the NFC East. How can Dallas retake that throne? Start with staring at that play-calling the Chiefs unleashed against Philly (my goodness was that amazing) in the second half and clean up the self-inflicted wounds. There was arguably no team that could've defeated the Cowboys in 2022 … except the Cowboys themselves.
Nick: I think this question is better-suited to answer regarding the Eagles and not the Chiefs. The reason for that is no one really has what KC has in Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid, and the combination of the two. This is the closest thing we've seen to Belichick and Brady and who knows, it could turn out to be better. Mahomes can lose a guy like Tyreek Hill and still have an MVP season where he basically dominated the league, just like he did in the Super Bowl and he wasn't even 100 percent. But what the Eagles have done is something that more replicable. The problem the Cowboys have and other teams have this as well, is their QB is making much more than $1 million per season. They hit on Jalen Hurts and because of that, they had the ability to go sign some of these other guys and trade for A.J. Brown. The Cowboys had that same success with Dak Prescott in the 2016-17 but obviously didn't capitalize. I think you can call the Rams a success because they went all-in and won it all. But the Eagles? We're going to find out if it's worth it because not only did they not win, but let's see what the next couple of years looks like when Hurts gets paid. But things the Cowboys can learn from? Yeah, get a bunch of offensive playmakers. It can't just be one or two guys. They need 4-5 and that means hitting on the draft again and having them cheap, such as the case with Tony Pollard, who now needs a new deal. But the Cowboys aren't far off from either team. What they're doing is working, too. Just hasn't gotten to the Super Bowl, but I think they're in the same conversation as the others.