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Mailbag: Thoughts On Maliek Collins' Season? Following Up On Hitchens?

KEN SWAN

BOSTON, MA

How much progress has Maliek Collins made this season? Disappointed so far?

Bryan: I thought he had a chance to make a Pro Bowl this season. He hasn't been terrible, but he hasn't been a Pro Bowler, either. Moving him back to one-technique has helped him. He's due for one of those great games soon. 

David: I'm the guy who thought Collins would lead the team in sacks this season, so I guess you could call it a disappointing year. That said, he's been dealing with a foot injury for what seems like the better part of the season. The numbers haven't been there, but he's managed to play through the injury and contribute to a pass rush that's No. 13 in the league in sacks. I'm not going to dog him for that.


EDDIE SAVAGE

FRESNO, CA

With Sean Lee's injury history and Jaylon Smith not 100 percent, I think it would be crazy to let Anthony Hitchens walk in free agency.  This defense has to be able to stop the run.  The front office needs to find a way to get a deal done.  If you are not going to sign free agents, then you absolutely cannot afford to allow players of his caliber to walk.  What are your thoughts?

Bryan:I totally agree with your thoughts about Hitchens, but I think they're going to let him walk. They really like Jaylon Smith a lot and he's going to get that first crack at it. I could see them drafting another linebacker. 

David: I think the world of Anthony Hitchens, but these are the types of problems that the salary cap gives you. If a team with far more cap space decides to offer him a fantastic deal, I'm not sure there's a ton this front office can do about it. I think the more likely scenario is that the Cowboys draft a linebacker early to help bolster their depth – and to potentially start if Jaylon isn't ready for that role.

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