SAN DIEGO, CA
Would it be a benefit to bring in Ronde Barber if he is willing to teach the DB's Kiffin's D? Or would you view this as a Matt Johnson progress stopper?
Bryan: I honestly think it would be a great idea not only to help the safeties but the corners as well. The tape I observed of Barber, he was still playing at a nice level. He could be a bridge that allows them to get Johnson ready. I don't view him as a progress stopper at all. If he was a stiff on film there is no way that I would even think about making this move but he is a veteran guy that would have a good shot of making everything work in the transition. He could teach the young secondary guys how to be a pro.
Rowan: I don't think it would necessarily stop Johnson's progress. Remember, he hasn't played a single down in an NFL game and it wouldn't be a bad thing for him to ease in. He couldn't practice fully for a large portion of the 2012 season, plus we don't really know Barry Church's health until he's back on the field and running full speed. Barber looks like he can still play and move around, so it will come down to money, which is the same case for most of these free agents Dallas may look at, particularly at safety. But Barber wouldn't be a bad fit.
I know the Cowboys have to do some work to even sign their upcoming draft picks, but if they don't sign a single free agent, will they be able to be competitive with just adding draft picks?
Bryan: When it's all said and done, I believe the Cowboys will have selected seven guys and added several more through post draft free agency which is one of their great strengths (Romo and Austin). I don't look as free agency as the end all, be all. This draft has depth at several positions and if they focus on that, they could add some nice pieces. Let's also remember that they will have several players coming back from injury which should dress things up nicely. This team is not like Jacksonville or Oakland that is very talent poor, making the right moves in the draft, then adjusting on final cuts could help them be just fine.
Rowan: Well, they've already signed free agents, it's just been their own. But I get what you're saying. The answer to your question depends how well they draft. They've done well early in the last couple drafts to get some quality, but this is a draft that they're going to have to hit on the majority of their picks, since free agency will be so quiet for the time being. They definitely can stay competitive, and the best teams are able to do that by drafting well and developing well.