Admin Profile: Joe Rodriguez
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Last Updated: Monday, February 10, 2014
Talking Defensive Tackles with Emory Hunt

In my last write-up I talked about the need for the Cowboys to look into going defense heavy, in particular at defensive tackle. I got together with Emory Hunt from FootballGameplan.com to bounce some questions off him. If you haven’t had the chance to check out his work, you need to head over to his site and check out his YouTube channel for the latest, he does a great job covering the game and prospects. So, let’s get into it: With the major college all-star games in the bag I wanted to cover some defensive tackles that may have moved up the boards, and who we should be looking at heading towards the combine in 2 weeks. With Jason Hatcher looking to land a sizable contract in free agency, the Cowboys will enter the draft with a gaping hole up the middle. For the sake of hypotheticals, lets say Dallas uses their first rounder on a DT. 1) In your mind, who will be the first 6 defensive tackles taken off the board? Is this a deep defensive tackle draft in your opinion? - Aaron Donald (Pitt), Timmy Jernigan (FSU), Will Sutton (ASU), Louis Nix (ND), Ra’shede Hageman (MINN), Anthony Johnson (LSU) 2) For the sake of hypotheticals, if Dallas is looking to fill the void left

Last Updated: Saturday, February 8, 2014
Drafting Defensive Tackle in 1st Round, Not Since 1991

With the NFL Scouting Combine just 2 weeks away, its time to ramp up the draft talk and dig deep into draft day scenarios. The Cowboys 2013 draft was heavy on offense early and I expect the defense to get the concentration this year in the same manner. Forget about trading up for the hot name QB, its not going to happen. This team needs defense and they need a lot of it. I believe the Cowboys will need to double-dip at the defensive tackle and defensive end positions in this years draft. Coming away with 2 defensive tackles and 2 defensive ends will help the Cowboys lessen any decimating injuries like last season. The biggest question is; does Dallas draft a defensive end or a defensive tackle with its first pick? Either way, Rod Marinelli and Leon Lett will keep this line on course and incoming rookies will develop nicely under the defensive coaches. Take this into consideration: Jerry has not drafted a DT in the 1st round since 1991 when he used the #1 overall pick on Russell Maryland, that’s 23 years. Depending on who you ask, that was pretty much a Jimmy Johnson selection anyway, that was his boy and it was a position we needed to make that defensive line a super bowl caliber

Last Updated: Monday, January 27, 2014
Poll: Cowboys 1st Round pick should be used on?

If history is any indicator, then expect the Cowboys to be very quiet come the start of free agency. In fact, it could be said the Cowboys have already made their biggest splash by re-signing kicker, Dan Bailey to a 6-year deal. That being said, the Cowboys will rely on the draft more than ever. The consensus about the  Cowboys biggest weakness is on defense, mainly the defensive line, but arguments can be made by any position on defense. We have a few linebackers (Bruce Carter and Sean Lee) that have played inconsistent ball and some that cannot stay healthy, so linebacker could be a pick, maybe not where we are currently set to pick, but its definitely on the radar somewhere in this draft. The secondary has some questions at safety and cornerback. Jeff Heath was a disaster and JJ. Wilcox could not unseat him, so this is a question mark. Then you have the durability and play of Morris Claiborne, some will say he is a bust already, and if he puts in another season like 2013, he will be. The Cowboys will likely add another cornerback as well. To me, defensive line is by far the biggest issue, and if we can’t get a pass rush going it’ll be another long year for Cowboys fans.

Last Updated: Saturday, January 18, 2014
Three East-West Game Standouts on Cowboys Radar

The 2014 East-West Shrine Game is in the books; and for me, there are three players that stood out and will be on the Cowboys radar during this year’s draft process. Let’s start with the name that is steadily gaining more and more coverage: Jimmy Garoppolo (6-3, 222lbs) QB, Eastern Illinois Garoppolo had a solid game and the Romo comparisons are gaining more media attention. It doesn’t help when he comes from the same college Tony Romo came from as an undrafted free agent. He’s undoubtedly been on no ones radar, at least for most fans. Everyone has been fixated on the big ticket names like Bridgewater, Manziel, and Bortles; but, that is slowly changing. Garoppolo had a solid career at Eastern Ilinois with an impressive TD:INT ratio. With A.J. McCarron backing out of the Senior Bowl, Garoppolo has seized on the opening and will play next Saturday. If Garoppolo has another solid showing he could see his stock skyrocket. The Senior Bowl has been a launching pad for several QBs in past years, so expect the name to be attached to the Cowboys in coming months. Jerry is not going to show his cards, and as in years before we’ve all seen all the smoke screens. We

Last Updated: Friday, January 10, 2014
Adding Will McClay could yield Defensive draft pick gold

Dallas Cowboys news has been a bit slow since we departed the 2013 season; but, word is coming out that Will McClay will be infusing his pro personnel scouting magic into this year’s draft board. McClay has been instrumental in finding some nice gems over the past few seasons. On top of finding Laurent Robinson a few seasons ago, he hit on George Selvie and Nick Hayden has been a nice find as well. I’m looking at this annoucement as a hint towards a heavy defensive draft. McClay is defensive minded which goes back to his lengthy stints in the Arena League as a defensive coordinator. Couple McClay’s knack for finding defensive players and his experience on that side of the ball, it only makes sense to pick his mind for this year’s draft which is considered to be a defensive heavy draft. With the Cowboys lack luster performance on defense there’s no doubt in my mind that this move further suggests we’ll be going all in for defense in May. If McClay’s success in finding pro players translates into draft success we could be in for a treat this coming draft. Share

Last Updated: Thursday, January 9, 2014
Key NFL Dates for 2014

With the Cowboys season over, its time to focus on the off season, and it all begins with the College Football “All-star” games: The East-West Shrine Game and The Senior Bowl. Here’s your quick guide for key dates for the 2014 NFL season: Jan. 18: East-West Shrine Game 4Pm EST (NFL Network) Jan. 19: AFC and NFC Championship Games Jan. 25: Senior Bowl 4PM EST (Gus Bradley vs Mike Smith) (NFL Network) Jan. 26: Pro Bowl Feb. 1: HOF Class of 2014 final selections announced Feb. 2: Super Bowl XLVIII (NJ) Feb. 17: First day for clubs to designate franchise or transition Players. Feb. 22-25: Scouting Combine (NFL Network) March 1: College Pro Days begin March 11: Free Agency Begins March 11: Teams must be under the 2014 salary cap before 4 p.m. ET. May 2: Deadline for restricted free agents to sign offer sheets. May 7: Deadline for prior club to exercise right of first refusal to restricted free agents. May 8-10: NFL Draft (NYC) (First Round will be on Thursday) June 1: Designate June cuts Share

Last Updated: Friday, January 3, 2014
How Does Tampa’s Hire of Frazier affect Dallas?

This time it looks like ESPN got their story confirmed by the source for once. Leslie Frazier texted ESPN’s Adam Schefter indicating he is going to Tampa. RT @JosinaAnderson: Filed to ESPN: Leslie Frazier just text me “going to Tampa.” Frazier will be next defensive coordinator for the Bucs. — Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 4, 2014 The thinking is that since Dallas did not allow Rod Marinelli to leave to Tampa, then Lovie went to his second choice of Frazier. So, the intrigue is over or is it? The question still remains: Is Monte Kiffin coming back or not? At this point this could very well mean Dallas is sticking with Kiffin or they are planning to make Marinelli the DC. The ideal plan would be to keep Kiffin in some sort of advisory capacity or consultant, like they did with former WR coach Jimmy Robinson. This would allow the Cowboys to promote Marinelli to DC, and allow for a few tweaks to the staff. My first would be to add former USC interim HC, Ed Orgeron. Orgeron is a highly regarded, highly respected defensive line coach who was instrumental in molding Russell Maryland and Warren Sapp. Orgeron would be a perfect fit in Dallas. Let’s see if

Last Updated: Friday, January 3, 2014
Poll: Who Will Coordinate the Defense in 2014?

The Cowboys remain tight lipped about the statuses of various assistants, but the one everyone is curious about is the future at the defensive coordinator position. At the end of the season it looked like a lock that Monte Kiffin would be among the coaches fired on “black monday;” however, that has not happened…yet. The latest rumor is that Bucs newly minted head coach, Lovie Smith was looking to poach our defensive line coach, Rod Marinelli. Despite various rumors Marinelli is still a Dallas Cowboy. A lot of what happens to the position has to do with the fate of Kiffin, if he is gone, Marinelli would be inclined to leave as well, even with a promotion. There are other options out there, some good and some not to appealing, but one thing is certain; Dallas needs to make a move sooner rather than later. Who do you think will be the Cowboys’ defensive coordinator in 2014 – take the poll here. Share

Last Updated: Monday, December 30, 2013
Kiffin Expected to be Out, Would Marinelli Stick Around?

The Cowboys offseason is currently underway, and with Jerry reaffirming that Jason Garrett would be back, the talk moves to the defense. Monte Kiffin needs to be released, but the Cowboys are working out the details for a press conference. Don’t be surprised if Jerry comes out and announces an extension for Jason Garrett, and Rod Marinelli as the new defensive coordinator. The hold up on this process could be Marinelli’s loyalty to Kiffin, and if Kiffin is gone, its possible he’d like to move on himself. The Cowboys need to move fast on promoting Marinelli, he’ll likely want to hand pick “his assistant” coaches. First assistant that comes to mind would be Raheem Morris to replace Jerome Henderson, and Eberflus could be on the outs as well. The defense clearly needs some revamping and Marinelli can help revamp it with his choices – needs to happen asap. Locking up Marinelli is crucial since its expected that Lovie Smith will resurface somewhere this offseason and Marinelli would probably rejoin him at some point. By promoting and extending Marinelli, the Cowboys can move fast on other defensive coaching assistant changes. If Kiffin is gone and

Last Updated: Tuesday, December 24, 2013
Does Jason Garrett have a Contract Extension Coming his way?

It’s been a high drama packed few days, and Tony Romo’s back injury is the latest twist in what should be a wild finish Sunday night. Leading up to last week’s game, rumors were swirling that the assistant coaches were fearful of getting fired and that Jason Garrett would be fired if the Cowboys failed to reach the playoffs for a third straight year. Garrett has had this team on the brink of the playoffs three straight years in de facto NFC East Championship games on the final game of the year versus division rivals. Romo will probably be out versus the Eagles and if he gives it a go, he’ll likely be ineffective; so, now the question is whether or not this buys Garrett time as the head coach for the 2014 season. When news broke about Romo being injured I immediately said this would spare Garrett from the reaper on “black monday,” and Jerry Jones continued his endorsement just yesterday. Jerry was asked about Garrett’s job security and he said, “That’s just not right. That’s just not correct,”  “I addressed that three or four weeks ago. He is not. That’s all you need to say about it.” And if you haven’t figured

Last Updated: Monday, December 23, 2013

Sounds like the Cowboys aren’t quite ready to say Romo is done for the year. Garrett says Tony Romo is getting treatment and will continue treatment. An official decision for Romo’s status could be determined on Wednesday. This could ultimately be a situation where the Cowboys don’t want to show their hand leading up to the game. The Cowboys will be looking at adding another QB in case Romo is not ready. If Orton gets the nod, they’ll need a backup for him. What a crazy season, so much drama. Would you have it any other way? Share

Last Updated: Monday, December 23, 2013

What a disastrous ending, and expect Garrett to be back now in 2014. No way Jerry cans him now with out the chance of Romo being the QB. 2014 will be a lame duck year under Garrett… Christmas has been ruined. Kyle Orton will start against the Eagles. Cowboys QB Tony Romo has been ruled out the rest of the season due to his back injury, per league source. — Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 23, 2013 Share

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