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Mailbag: Most Drastic Change in CBA?

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What do you think is the most drastic change in the new CBA?– DARRELL NIX / BOSTON, MA

David: It's hard to ignore the ballooning salary cap and the way that will affect player contracts, but I'm awfully interested to see how the changes to the substance abuse policy will change things. The testing window has been limited to two weeks, and the threshold for a positive test has been raised. The league is trying to move away from penalizing players for smoking. It's hard not to wonder how that'll affect players that were affected by the old system — like perhaps Randy Gregory, for instance.

Nick: I think the most drastic change for everyone is something the fans won't really see and that's the big pay raises for a lot of the players near the bottom and middle of the roster. That's something that affects a wide range of players. For the fans, I think it's the seventh playoff team. That's just one more team that can sneak into the mix. And that's good for the league because while it might just be one more team that makes it, it probably keep 3-4 teams in the hunt longer than most seasons.

With losses in free agency, does that change draft strategy?SUSAN NINKOVICH / NEW BRAUNFELS, TX

David: I know it's tough, but it doesn't make a sense to focus on a draft strategy until we see the full picture. The Cowboys have a lot of work to do just to get their roster where they want it for the season. If the draft were today, they'd need about 19 things. Once they've made some more additions, we'll have a better idea of where they need to draft.

Nick: The Cowboys will say no. But I don't know how it doesn't. Right now, there is no real replacement for Robert Quinn or Byron Jones. Had they re-signed, you could've overlooked both corner and pass-rusher as major needs. Now they are so I would say the Cowboys have to address those two areas early in the draft. I can't really imagine what would happen between now and then to change that.

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