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Mailbag: What Got Zeke Deal Done & Who's Next?

Zeke Hurdle

Very relieved the Zeke deal got done. What do you think were the major hurdles in completing the negotiations? And do you expect talks with Dak and Amari to move faster now? Thanks. - MIKE S / DALLAS, TX

Bryan: There were clearly dynamics to the deal that had to be worked out from Elliott's side. They are certain rules in place that needed to be followed and until they came to an understanding of those rules this deal wasn't going to get done. As far as Prescott and Cooper's deals being done, I wouldn't be surprised one bit if they play under the current contracts for another season.

Rob: Hats off to the front office for getting it done in time for the opener. As Bryan said, this was a complex negotiation. I don't know if this deal expedites anything with Prescott or Cooper because every deal is different and both sides have to get to a number they're comfortable with. Certainly the Cowboys still view both players as cornerstones, just like Elliott.

We always seem to gloss over the third component of a football team -- special teams -- assuming that things will work out, when in reality, a special teams play can make the difference between a win and a loss (see the Redskins game from last year). What has the team done to improve its special teams this year - especially its punt coverage unit and kickoff return units? - JOEY ARNEL SAYSON / SANTA MONICA, CA

Bryan: A healthy Tavon Austin would help the punt return team. With the way that teams just kick it out of the end zone, not sure how much better you have to be on returns there. They need a better year from Chris Jones as a punter.

Rob: It's always a challenge to keep continuity there because up to maybe a third of the roster turns over every year. But they've got some talented guys on the coverage units: C.J. Goodwin, Jeff Heath and Kavon Frazier to name a few. The staff led by Keith O'Quinn is very capable.

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