Mailbag: Lett's Coaching Development; How Healthy Will Team Be Sunday?

TIMOTHY FRISBIE*

THOMASVILLE, GA
The defense is going to need all hands on deck for this one. Do you feel like the McClains and Hitchens will be good to go on Sunday?

Bryan:There is no question that this team will need all their defensive players available in order to handle what this Packers offense is about to throw at them. Rolando McClain should be able to practice on Friday and after what we saw from Hitchens last week, I think he goes even though they would call him a gametime decision. Terrell McClain is in the same boat as Hitchens as far as the game time call but coaches might go with a healthier player in his spot.

David:If Anthony Hitchens can play after just a week of rest from his ankle injury, I have very little doubt that he'll be ready to go against the Packers. Rolando McClain is a little bit trickier, because he's dealing with a head injury, but this has kind of been his method all season. How many times this year has he been missing or limited during practice, only to show up at kickoff? I wouldn't bet against him. Like Bryan mentioned, the Cowboys have far more depth on the defensive line than they do at linebacker, so I'm not sure as much about Terrell McClain. Something to keep an eye on.

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LANCE BELLKILLEEN, TX
As I sit here watching the 1995 NFC Championship Game (Boys vs. Packers), Leon Lett was a destructive, dominant D-Lineman. He was a beast! How much credit does he deserve for coaching these D-Linemen and the play of Tyrone Crawford?

Bryan: I will say this about Leon Lett – there are former players in this league that are terrible coaches, but he is not one of them. These last two seasons under Rod Marinelli, he has grown leaps and bounds from what I thought he might be. He works extremely hard in getting all these defensive linemen ready to play and that is a credit to the type of person he is. There is no doubt that his experience as a NFL defensive line has help and the way that he has passed those experiences along has helped a great deal.

David: You've got to give him plenty of credit – especially this season, as Marinelli has more responsibilities than just the defensive line since he was promoted to defensive coordinator. Leon Lett and Ben Bloom  both have played a big role in developing these defensive linemen, and I think young guys like DeMarcus Lawrence and Tyrone Crawford really click with Lett because of his experience at the NFL level.

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