IRVING, Texas --Due to the Cowboys' admitted intent to address the interior offensive line this offseason, free agent guard Carl Nicks was an obvious link to Dallas. Today, he's a Tampa Bay Buccaneer with a whopping $30 million guaranteed.
Was it ever likely Nicks would sign with the Cowboys? Probably not.
Never got that feeling around here. Money -- particularly after news broke that the league stripped them of $10 million in salary cap space over the next two years -- might have been the biggest factor. The Cowboys identified Brandon Carr as their top free agent priority, and there wouldn't be enough cash for both if they wanted to fill any other needs on the roster.
Nicks did play for new Cowboys O-line coach Bill Callahan at Nebraska, but not sure that was ever a draw, either.
On a side note, three players don't make a NFL roster -- but, the Bucs have made the biggest splash so far with Nicks, wide receiver Vincent Jackson and cornerback Eric Wright. Tampa Bay makes a trip to Cowboys Stadium next season.
Look for the Cowboys to still consider signing a free agent guard, but perhaps more in the range of the five-year, $15 million deal Kyle Kosier got in 2006 -- one of the most underrated moves they've made in years.