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Mailbag: Planning Ahead For Leary's Future?; Josh Brent's Development?

ED  WILSON
TELLURIDE, CO
As I recall, when Ron Leary was signed as an undrafted free agent, I read that he was a very good lineman, but he wasn't drafted because he had a degenerative knee condition and probably couldn't play for more than a few years. Well, it's been a few years: how are his knees holding up? How much longer do you think he can play at a high level? Would it be a good idea to draft or sign another good guard and relegate Ron to a top notch back-up, maybe extending his career?

Bryan: Leary has done a really nice job of working hard in the weight room to make that knee as strong as possible for the season. He has played through a lot of aches and pains with it but continues to go at a high level. I believe that you will see them looking into a possible replacement or solid backup here in the very near future. 

David:The front office signed Leary to a one-year extension earlier this year, but I will be very interested to see if they offer him any kind of extension in the near future. The Cowboys need to have a plan one way or another, as Leary and Mackenzy Bernadeau are free agents next year. If they opt to avoid a long-term extension, I wouldn't be surprised to see them draft a guard in the mid rounds.

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BERNIE BRAKEBAY SHORE, NY
I hear a lot about Greg Hardy and different players along the defensive line, but I never see anything on Josh Brent. I think with a full off season and training camp he can be force in the middle of that line as a one-technique. What do you think?

Bryan: In my mind I have moved on from Brent because I believe they need a more athletic player there and this draft has those types of players. We could also see Terrell McClain in that spot. Brent just appears to be a bad scheme fit in my opinion. 

David:It's going to be interesting from a numbers standpoint – especially if the Cowboys draft a defensive tackle. Brent fits better as a one-technique, so right now he's competing against Nick Hayden and possibly Terrell McClain. Tyrone Crawford is obviously your starting three-technique. That doesn't include the likes of Ken Bishop or Davon Coleman. I can't see the team keeping more than four defensive tackles, so Brent is going to be in that jumble of guys fighting for a roster spot – particularly if a high draft pick joins the mix.

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