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Mailbag: Would Keeping A FB Show Run Commitment?

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GARY HEROD
DALLAS, TX

After reading the article about the running back position, if they do keep a fullback, would that kind of lock them in, or show there will be a commitment to the running game this year? And if they don't, to the passing game?

David: I don't think so, simply because it's way too easy to manipulate the roster. The Cowboys had five tight ends and no fullback on the initial 53-man roster, and they didn't sign Tyler Clutts until the tail end of the season. We also saw the Cowboys run the ball well out of "11" personnel – that is, three receivers, one tight end, one running back and no fullback – last year. As useful as a fullback might be, I think it'll be the offensive line that dictates how run-heavy they get.

Rowan: That may be reading too deeply into it. Remember that they were going to go without a fullback all last season, not because they didn't want to ever run, but because they thought a second tight end could do the job in this zone scheme. I expect them to keep a fullback this year, given how they realized they needed one last season, but even last year with the fullback they didn't commit to the running game. So the presence of one doesn't necessarily mean the game plan changes significantly.

CHARLES  SPINNER
HAMPTON, VA

Not trying to hate or anything, but what do you think DeMarcus Ware is going to do this year with the Broncos? And was it a bad move to let him go?

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David: Ware is going to have the fantastic advantage of playing with an offense that should be playing with the lead a lot in 2014. He's also with the Super Bowl runner-up, which means no one is going to look at him to carry the defense. I think he's going to rotate in and out a lot, particularly in obvious passing situations. I wouldn't be surprised to see him get eight to 10 sacks if he can stay healthy. If he does that, it's going to look like the Cowboys made a bad decision. But I don't buy that, as the cap space created with the cut will be beneficial in the longterm – not just 2014.

Rowan: It was certainly a risky one that could backfire. I think Ware could have been had for cheaper, so if 2013 training camp Ware is the guy the Broncos are getting, it's not going to look like the best decision. My guess is that his season will go somewhat similarly to what we've seen around here the last couple years. All anyone will hear about from Broncos camp is how Ware looks rejuvenated and he'll go into the season lighting up the stats sheet before a slow decline late in the year after injuries. That's pretty much what has to happen for the decision not to be criticized, because Ware's still got the talent. 

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