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Mailbag: Pollard Returning Punts? Next For Micah?


With Tony Pollard on our team and the coaches seeming to have trouble getting him touches on offense, why don't the Cowboys have him doing punt returns with his explosiveness? — DEANGELO WATTS / VA

Nick: If he's up for it, I'd be OK with that. But he's got to be able to field the ball. Just because you can catch kickoffs and passes from the quarterback, doesn't mean you're the right person to catch punts. It's about tracking the ball, being comfortable enough to catch it in traffic and willing to catch the ball before it bounces and rolls down to the 2-yard line. It's not an easy job but if Pollard gets good at it, it's a great way to get the ball in his hands more.

Rob: Works for me. Pollard was in the group of guys fielding punts early in last week's practice, but he's done that in past years, too, so I wouldn't necessarily read anything into that. I do agree that if he's comfortable doing it, that it would be another way to get him involved because he's got a special suddenness to his game. Jalen Tolbert is a candidate to watch.

Micah Parsons was pretty amazing during his first year, but can we expect Micah to be better this season, and where could he improve? — VIN HRASKY / IOWA CITY, IA

Nick: Let's see if he can hit the curveball? I mean, we saw the home runs he hit the other night but what about off-speed pitches? I'm kidding of course. Right now, it seems like he can do just about anything. I think where he can improve if just the consistency as a rusher, especially against the taller, bigger left tackles. And in the passing game, he can be even more dynamic with interceptions and turnovers. But if gets a lot better than last year, he's definitely going to be the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year. That's really a realistic goal for him at this point.

Rob: The most remarkable part of Parsons' rookie season wasn't the 13 sacks. It was the 13 sacks and 42 pressures without much pass rushing experience. He's not going to be a full-time edge rusher, but think about how much he can improve there if he keeps refining his technique. He plans to work with DeMarcus Ware more during the break between OTAs/minicamp and the start of training camp.

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