Football analyst Bryan Broaddus answers a few leftover questions from the radio shows this week: * *
John in Virginia:After the Seattle game, Garrett said he is "looking at alternatives" to Felix Jones. Jerry Jones said "Felix Jones remains secure." Will Felix play this week, and who is coaching this team?
Broaddus: Garrett made his "looking at alternatives" comment right after the Seattle game at his press conference. Jerry Jones' comment was on his radio show Tuesday when the team had returned from the game. Every Monday morning after the game, Garrett and Jones sit down to discuss what took place that Sunday. It's Garrett's job to always look at his roster and determine where it might be improved. On the other side of the desk, it's Jerry Jones job as the general manager to try and help his coach with those improvements. After that Monday morning meeting, the plan for the coming week is talked about thus you get the coach and general manager on the same page. In my view, Felix Jones will play as the kick returner but let's not forget to evaluate what is going on in front of Jones with this blocking. Yes, he has struggled but make sure you are always looking at the whole picture.
Chris in Connecticut:Both of Vickers and Connor signings in the offseason were supposed to be huge for the Cowboys and I know it's only two games but so far neither player has made any kind of impact what's your opinion on these two players?
Broaddus: To be honest, I have been wondering the same thing about both players. Their play has not been up to what we were able to study when they were on the market as free agents. I really believed that Connor was going to challenge Carter for his spot every day in camp but it wasn't even close. There were scouts that had talked about his pass coverage at Carolina that had questions but in a game against Houston in 2011 he did a really nice job against Daniels their tight end. There was no excuse of the punt block last week against Seattle other than poor technique on that play because later with the same look, he gets the job done. As for Vickers, he is nowhere as good as he was in Houston and Cleveland. In those looks, he played with some dominance at the point of attack but we have yet to see any of that plus his special teams work has not been that helpful. Scouts are taught if you see it once, you will see it again but in these cases, I am still waiting.
Eric in California:DID the Cowboys have any interest in Tampa Bay safety Mark Barron during the draft? I Know a lot of people assumed that's who they were trading up for during the draft?
Broaddus: The front office was very interested in Barron during the drafting process. Jason Garrett was at Alabama's pro day in the Spring and took a look at all their players. Claiborne was the second best player on their board while Barron was ninth overall so there was plenty of interest there. I personally thought they were going to get Fletcher Cox the defensive tackle / end from Mississippi State. The Buccaneers have done a smart thing by putting Ronde Barber at safety to help Barron with his development. Have seen some coverage and physical play from Barron these first two games.
Lucy in California:Do you think the Cowboys will ever use Claiborne to return punts and kickoffs? I understand that he's your starting corner but you do have Mike Jenkins as well if it's a matter of injury. Arizona uses Peterson as a return man and their starting corner…we can all agree he was a game changer in the return game last year?
Broaddus: I do agree with you that Peterson was a game changer. Could Claiborne help this team as a kickoff return man, you bet and the point that you have Mike Jenkins makes it possible to use him but with that being said, Claiborne is working through some health issues with his knee and the feeling that I get is that front office and the coaches do not want to expose him to the possibility of getting that knee injured on a return and losing him for the season.
Anthony in Kentucky: How's Mike Jenkins looked in practice this week? I think this is a game we are really going to need him. Also what do you expect out of McCray being his first start at safety?
Broaddus: From guys that I have spoken with have said that Jenkins has practiced well. You are right, this team is going to need him at some point and time in the lineup. The idea is to get as many players on the field that can cover and Jenkins can do that on the outside. I expect a better game from McCray than what he played in Seattle. Coming off the bench and handling special teams duties were rough for him. A week of practice will help him but he has to be ready for the ball going down the field quite a bit. During training camp when Church and McCray worked together there was a nice mix.