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Mailbag: Options To Replace Andy Dalton?

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Do you think the Cowboys just showed their hand that they plan on going with a CB with their first round pick by letting Chidobe Awuzie walk? – MARK SOMMA / GAINESVILLE, VA

David: I don't think it's that cut and dry, although I will say cornerback is clearly one of the favorites to be that first pick. They'll assuredly sign some veteran help, just to cover themselves. You don't want to go into any draft with an obvious need. So while I don't think they're done adding talent to the position, if you made me guess as to what the No. 10 overall pick would be, my bet right now would be on cornerback.

Rob: Not necessarily. I would expect them to gauge free agency for some veteran help, but that wouldn't (and shouldn't) preclude them from drafting a cornerback. Perhaps re-signing Jourdan Lewis is a possibility, too. Trevon Diggs showed a lot of potential as a rookie, but he had some growing pains too, and you can expect the same from a rookie cornerback this year – even a first-round pick. Experience counts at that position.

With Andy Dalton moving on to Chicago, could Alex Smith be a good replacement? – DONALD LEWIS / WASHINGTON D.C.

David: I know we say it a lot, but I think it'll come down to cost. Alex Smith and other veterans like him will want a chance to start, and they don't have that here. But if he or another veteran can be signed at a low price, like Dalton was last year, I think it'd be awfully smart. I know the team struggled last year, but Dalton proved that a capable veteran QB can make a big difference. I hope the front office takes a look at another veteran, whether it's Smith or someone else.

Rob: I think he'd be a great free agent addition, but I'm also not sure how much the Cowboys plan to budget for the backup quarterback spot this year. Signing Dalton last year was unique and a bit of a luxury. The Cowboys can always move more money around through restructures to make things work under the cap but there's a lot left to do at other positions, too. 🍀

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