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Mailbag: What's A Realistic Trade Value For Spencer?


What is a realistic trade value for Anthony Spencer? He's coming off a career year, but I've read that the Cowboys can't expect anything but a 3rd or 4th round pick for him. What's the least the Cowboys would take, and could a team possible give up a 1st or 2nd for him?

Nick: Well it's a good question. But remember, this wouldn't be an ordinary trade, not that trades in the NFL are that ordinary at all. But if the Cowboys traded Spencer at this point, he comes with a hefty $10.63 million tag. And it's likely any team that traded for Spencer would then restructure his deal with a long-term contract. So the Cowboys would basically trade Spencer a team for the right to sign him. Teams aren't going to fork over a first-round pick to get a guy they'll have to then sign long-term.

Rowan: I think a second round pick would be the likeliest deal if a team is going to trade for him. The Cowboys probably feel he's worth more than a third, and I don't see a team giving up a first-round pick for a player they only have signed for a year at a price that some consider too high. Of course, that team could extend him longer, but by trading for him they'd have to only hope he'd agree to a new deal. I imagine more talks will heat up as the free agent period gets closer.

With all the talk about free agents and rookie draft picks, wouldn't Ernie Sims fit the 4-3 system? He played well in his short time and he has played in it in the past.

Nick:I don't think he's a high priority. He did play it before but he also played it to the point that he was on the street. Sounds like the Cowboys would rather restructure Dan Connor's deal and get him at a lower price than re-sign Sims. But I wouldn't rule Sims out of the mix completely. It'll probably be [embedded_ad] something they do after the draft and free agency to see what the depth chart looks like at that position.

Rowan: He's definitely more accustomed to and comfortable in the 4-3 than the 3-4. It's possible Sims comes back next year after filling in nicely and jumping into a starting role in 2012, but the Cowboys may rather utilize some of their younger backups or bring in a player with more success in the past in that scheme. Sims wouldn't be a poor choice to have around, even as only a backup, but the team has to be careful about how it allocates its funds for a strong side linebacker.

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