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Mailbag: Taco Charlton's Year 2 Outlook? Could This Free-Agent LB Help?

SCOTT HUBER
ROCKLAND COUNTY, NY

I know that Taco Charlton is young and talented, but I feel like he's being overshadowed by his teammates on the defensive line. Guys like Irving, Crawford, and of course Lawrence can all play well off the edge, but then there are others like Tapper and Ealy who shouldn't be excluded from the conversation either. Being that he was a first-round pick last year, is it fair to say that Taco is expected to make leaps and bounds over his peers during his sophomore season?

Bryan:That's your hope. They drafted him to one day be a starter. At this point he's stuck behind DeMarcus Lawrence but that could change depending on what happens with his contract extension. All Charlton can do is work hard, play technique and be ready when he gets his chance.

Rob:The Cowboys are hopeful Charlton makes a jump in Year 2, for sure. I don't know if he has to play 60 snaps a game for it to be considered major progress, though. Rod Marinelli always plays eight guys in his defensive line rotation. We saw Charlton play more, and play more effectively, after the Cowboys let Damontre' Moore go last year.

FRED ROBERTS
SALEM, OR

Do you think the Cowboys might take a look at the recently released Mychal Kendricks? Or do you think they wait and see how things work out with the players they have?

Bryan:I believe they wait because that's been the way they've operated here the past several years in the front office. They want to see what they have in Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch before making any other moves.

Rob:In the last three drafts, the Cowboys have invested a second- and first-round pick on two players (Smith and Vander Esch) who can play middle linebacker. So yeah, I'd imagine they see how things go with the young guys. But I doubt a proven, veteran free agent like Kendricks stays out of work long. He'll probably end up somewhere relatively quickly.

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