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Mailbag: Spending Strategy For Free Agency?; How Much Was Ware Missed?

JOSH  LOPEZCORPUS CHRISTI , TX
With all the talk about the focus being placed on defense this offseason, do you think that Dallas will have enough cap space to sign a big name free agent, or will they rely mainly on the draft for new younger players?

Bryan: I have believed all along that any free agent signings would be from their own group – which is the right thing to do. Stephen Jones is a huge believer in the draft so he will take those picks plus anyone that they can grab from their priority free agent list and go to work. If they sign a player from another team it will be a deal that favors the club cap-wise much like they did with Terrell McClain and Jeremy Mincey.

David:It's hard to say how much of that cap space they'll have left when they're done signing guys like Dez Bryant and/or DeMarco Murray, not to mention the smaller name free agents that are all over this roster. I think the Cowboys are going to pursue players in free agency – but it's not going to be a big splash signing that will steal headlines. I don't think this front office has the money or the desire to sign a guy like Ndamukong Suh or Jason Pierre-Paul. But there are some veterans on the market who can be signed for cheap. My guess is the Cowboys like their odds of signing inexpensive pieces and letting Rod Marinelli coach them into greater production.

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ERIC BECRAFTDEKALB, IL
Hey guys, hindsight is awesome, and not trying to be an antagonist, but now that the season is over, do you think that D. Ware would have given us the one think we were lacking all year, a consistent pass rush, and maybe been the missing component for advancing further in the playoffs, given Rodgers had all day in the second half of that game? And was it even financially feasible to keep him at all?

Bryan: As a front office you make these types of moves and you don't look back. They had plenty of chances to win that playoff game without having a pass rush. There was no guarantee that Ware would have even been healthy enough to be a factor after what we had seen from the last two seasons – so I felt like they made the right move there.

David:It's an interesting thought, but you have to remember that you can't have one without the other. If DeMarcus Ware had been on this defense in 2014, then Jeremy Mincey and Henry Melton likely wouldn't have been. Would Ware have been effective, or even healthy as a one-man show? It's hard to say. The Cowboys' pass rush was obviously lacking, but its long-term future is brighter without his contract eating up cap space.

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