What kind of chance, if any, does Randy Gregory have of being reinstated? When does Dallas decide the lack of playing time is too significant to continue and invest in the player? - ROBERT MIRANDA / MARANA, AZ
Bryan: Just happened to be watching defensive film the other day and I kept noticing No. 94 coming off the edge and being disruptive in the backfield. I am not giving up on Randy Gregory, nor should this front office. Sure, it hasn’t been perfect, but the talent is just too great with him. Hopefully the league will come down with their decision soon and the front office/staff will be able to plan accordingly.
Rob: According to reports, Gregory is getting ready to apply for reinstatement to the league. These repeated suspensions for violations of the substance abuse policy are especially difficult for Gregory and the Cowboys because he can’t be around the team or have contact with them. It’s tough to predict what will happen this time because the “indefinite suspension” status is so broad, but as we’ve said before, the Cowboys believe this is a medical issue and that Gregory has worked very hard to get on the right track. As head coach Jason Garrett told us earlier this offseason, their feeling is that relapse is sometimes part of rehab.
The obvious passing strategy at the beginning of 2018 was to have an overall low-cost receiver contingent with some decent talent and to make it work as effectively as paying “star players” in that position. Clearly, that approach has worked well in certain instances for other teams. But reflecting on it today, what would you say were the top causes of failure with that strategy for the Cowboys and what, in your opinion, are the lessons to be taken forward? - WOODY BANKS / GRAPEVINE, TX
Bryan: I really like this question. I understand what they were trying to do, but they had some players that were worse than they expected. They caught a declining Terrance Williams. Deonte Thompson was inconsistent and Allen Hurns couldn’t generate the same numbers as Dez Bryant did in his final season with the team. The front office/staff believed that they could survive without a No. 1 receiver and that just wasn’t the case. Other than Cole Beasley they had no one that put pressure on the defense. Give them credit, they could have just rode this out, but they didn’t and gave a significant asset for Amari Cooper in order to turn things around, which he did.
Rob: Aside from the obvious – Cooper’s arrival was a game changer at midseason – I think the Cowboys simply had too many new faces in a large receiver rotation when the season began. They had four new receivers getting snaps, not to mention the young tight ends trying to replace Jason Witten. That’s a lot for a young quarterback to digest. This offseason, Prescott has a lot more continuity with the group around him.