With Dak finally done, I'm actually thankful we can focus our attention on other signings. With a long list of 20+ free agents of our own, do you have a sense for who will be re-signed? I would love your thoughts on a handful of guys you think will be re-signed and another handful of guys that you are really hoping we re-sign? – DAVID NYSTROM / LOUDON, TN
David: I'm not trying to sound mean, but one benefit for the Cowboys this year is that I don't think very many of their free agents are "must sign" players. In terms of actual, proven production, they aren't losing all that much. I'd love to bring back Aldon Smith, depending on the price. I also think it would be huge to bring back C.J. Goodwin and Joe Thomas, mainly for their special teams ability. Other than that, I'm not interested in getting into bidding wars for players that can be replaced in the draft.
Rob: I agree on Smith, Goodwin and Thomas. What about L.P. Ladouceur and restricted free agents Antwaun Woods and Cedrick Wilson? Jourdan Lewis or Chidobe Awuzie? Perhaps a few more players could be back if it works under the cap. The Cowboys have to fill out the roster. You mentioned they've got over 20 free agents. They do have 10 draft picks, but it's unlikely that all make the team. The Cowboys reportedly have created more than $18 million in space with restructures, and that number could always get higher, but typically you have to set aside like $10 million for the draft class. Looks like it's going to be pretty tight.
One mock draft has the Cowboys selecting Kyle Pitts at No. 10. If Pitts is still on the board when the Cowboys pick at 10, do you think they would entertain offers to trade back or stand and select the player at 10 a la Cee Dee Lamb last year, assuming that Pitts is the highest rated player on their board when they pick at 10? – ROBERT CORCHINE/ LEAWOOD, KS
David: I'd just like to state for the record that I'm a big fan of Kyle Pitts, and it'd be exciting if the Cowboys drafted him. But it's hard to imagine that happening. They have much bigger needs, and given their draft position, there will be talented players available to them – even if Pitts is the top-rated player on the board. If someone knocks their socks off with a trade offer, that could be interesting. But otherwise, I'll think they'll hang in and draft a defender or an offensive lineman – even if they have a better grade on Pitts.
Rob: To me, Pitts wouldn't just have to be the best player left on the board. He'd have to be the best player by far, just like Lamb was. I agree with the notion that you get yourself in trouble reaching for needs, but tight end is one of maybe three positions on the entire roster that doesn't seem like much of a need at all. Makes the most sense to take the best defensive player. You could talk me into offensive line, more so than tight end, if the board were to fall that way.