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19. DALLAS COWBOYS (9-7)
LAST SEASON: Cowboys slid from NFC-best 13 wins to out of playoffs for several reasons Nathan Peterman Jersey , some likely to be addressed in draft. QB Dak Prescott couldn’t match numbers from NFL Offensive Rookie of Year season in 2016. Offensive line was inconsistent because of injuries, and left guard is need with Jonathan Cooper leaving in free agency. Star WR Dez Bryant had third straight subpar season since signing $70 million contract and was released to avoid big salaries and cap hits in final two years. Team didn’t get many big plays from receivers. Because Prescott and OL weren’t as good, Cowboys couldn’t overcome star RB Ezekiel Elliott’s six-game suspension for domestic violence allegations. Cowboys were playing their best when 2016 NFL rushing leader’s legal options ran out eight games into season. Dallas lost first three without him, couldn’t recover to make postseason. Defense was again solid but lacking dynamic playmakers beyond DE DeMarcus Lawrence, second in NFL with 14 1/2 sacks.
THEY NEED: WR, LB, S Shaquill Griffin Jersey , OL, DT, TE
THEY DON’T NEED: RB, CB, QB
POSSIBLE FIRST PICK: LB Rashaan Evans, Alabama; G Will Hernandez, UTEP; S Derwin James Olivier Vernon Jersey , Florida State; T Kolton Miller, UCLA; WR D.J. Moore, Maryland; WR Calvin Ridley, Alabama; WR Courtland Sutton, SMU; DT Vita Vea, Washington.
OUTLOOK: If Cowboys don’t go WR in first round, they will be counting on free agent Allen Hurns to replace Bryant as No. 1 receiver. Hurns flashed potential in four years at Jacksonville Jatavis Brown Jersey , but never big numbers. With Sean Lee’s history of injuries and lingering uncertainty over Jaylon Smith’s recovery from bad college knee injury, LB remains priority. Cowboys let steady, versatile Anthony Hitchens go in free agency. Pro Bowl LT Tyron Smith’s injury issues exposed lack of depth on OL, so fourth first-rounder in eight years wouldn’t be shock. Could be tackle or guard because Cowboys might consider moving La’el Collins back to LG from RT. If Prescott and Elliott find rookie form again, outlook brightens considerably with right help in draft. If not and Cowboys miss playoffs, franchise could end up in transition with firing of coach Jason Garrett and cloudy future for Prescott two years after Dallas turned to him by releasing Tony Romo, who retired.
Atlanta Falcons coach Dan Quinn has made three additions to his staff Ryan Schraeder Jersey , including running backs coach Bernie Parmalee.The Falcons also have hired Mayur Chaudhari and Chad Walker to assist with special teams and the offense, respectively.
Parmalee spent the past three seasons as the Oakland Raiders’ running backs coach. He replaces Keith Carter, who left the Falcons earlier this month to join the Tennessee Titans’ staff as an offensive line coach.
Chaudhari was special teams coordinator for the University of Hawaii for the past two seasons.
Walker coached the University of Arkansas outside linebackers in 2017 after spending 2016 as Atlanta’s assistant linebackers coach.
Last month, the Falcons announced Greg Knapp’s return to the team as quarterbacks coach.
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