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Old 04-29-2012, 02:05 PM    (permalink
E-Man
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Coale has good return ability, and so does Harris. Right now I'm cool with the receiving corps. Obviously Miles and Dez are the two starters, and they both have big play and Pro Bowl potential. With Witten the third wideout will be limited, but they're still important. I like Harris and want him to be the guy, but I can see them putting him in competition with Coale for the third WR spot and return duties. My only problem is that Ogletree is still on the team, and the dude is pretty worthless.
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Old 05-01-2012, 05:56 PM    (permalink
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Interesting article on Nate Livings from PFF. Talks about his pros and cons.

https://www.profootballfocus.com/blo...tency-concern/


Nate Livings: Consistency Concern
March 30th, 2012 | Author: Sam Monson
When the Cowboys said goodbye to Montrae Holland and signed Nate Livings this offseason, did they truly upgrade at left guard? A quick scan of our rankings last season suggests they didn’t as Livings was ranked 56th while Holland finished 16th. That really doesn’t tell the whole story, though.

Pro Football Focus’ grades come as a result of watching and analyzing every play from the NFL season. However, without some thought and context, pointing solely to rankings can be dangerous, and we’re always encouraging people to dig deeper than simply one statistic.

Holland graded well last season, so Dallas’ decision to cut him loose and look for a replacement is an interesting one. That being said, he isn’t the youngest player around and I wouldn’t be too comfortable banging a drum for him based on around 600 snaps. That in mind, let’s instead focus on the player that now replaces him in the lineup: Nate Livings.




Situational Overview

Livings hasn’t received a positive grade from PFF for a complete season in any of the past four years we’ve been grading. It is true that he has had strong–even dominant–games in each of them, though. It isn’t so much that Livings is an outright poor player, but rather that he is extremely inconsistent. Thus, Livings has always ended up more bad than good over the long term. What clouds things even more is that he is not just capable of the odd good day against a bad opponent. Livings has actually performed extremely well against the best the NFL has to offer. He held his own this season against Justin Smith–arguably the best defensive player in football–and turned in strong showings against Baltimore twice, Buffalo and Arizona’s Calais Campbell. In those five games combined, he allowed just four total pressures in pass protection, and earned a run blocking grade of +3.7, though he was also charged with a pair of penalties.

Honestly, had you been wanting to pick some games from his season to see how he fared against strong opposition, those are the games you would pick and you would likely come away thinking that Livings was a good player. He proved he was capable of neutralizing some of the best defenders in the NFL while protecting his quarterback ably and run blocking efficiently. These games give you an indication of why the Cowboys like Livings. Coaches always look at upside and talent, content in their own ability to coach out the negatives and iron the wrinkles out of a player’s game. This, perhaps more than anything, is what gets teams into trouble with personnel decisions. They bring in players they know are flawed, believing they can fix them and that they’ll end up with a better player than the tape has shown for years. Sometimes it’s possible, most of the time it’s not.



One Step Forward…

Maybe the Cowboys think that way with Livings, or maybe they just watched tape from the wrong games, the big games. Had they watched the biggest game of them all, the playoff game, they would have seen Livings get taken to task by the same player he controlled completely the first time they met: Houston’s Antonio Smith. Those games may have been the logical place to start, but the trouble is not in those games. The trouble is in the games where the wheels fall off, like in his Week 5 performance against the Jaguars. Livings earned a -9.0 grade for that game, which is about as poor as a guard can grade for us. He allowed a sack and a knockdown of the QB while also getting stung for a holding penalty. Yet, it was his performance in the run game that earned the bulk of the negative grade as he was beaten badly by just about everybody on the Jacksonville defense.

The interesting thing about this game is it highlights well both the problems and the strengths in Livings’ game. He is 6’5″ and 332 lbs, so when he gets in good position early, he can cope with just about anybody. That’s why he was able to live with Justin Smith, and it’s why he graded positively, even in this game, on multiple occasions. With 4:42 to go in the first quarter, he helped the Bengals pick up a first down on 3rd-and-2 because he was able to get into good position quickly. With DE, Leger Douzable shaded outside Livings, exactly where the Bengals want to run the football, Livings is able to get quickly across his face, then seal him to the inside and ride him right past the point of attack. This gave Cedric Benson the crease he needed to convert. This is textbook play that requires strength, agility and technique, and Livings executed it perfectly.



And Two Steps Back…

Now, what about the plays where he is was beaten? The problem Livings has is that, at his size, when he is out of position, he finds it extremely tough to recover. The very next play the Jaguars run a stunt on Livings’ side. As he realizes that Terrance Knighton is looping away from him, he is run right over by DRE Jeremy Mincey. Mincey ploughs through Livings on his way to the sack before the big guard can re-adjust and throw on the anchors. In the second quarter as part of a double team, Livings fails to get into good position, and allows DT C.J. Mosley to beat him to the outside and hit the running back at the line of scrimmage, killing the play. Most interior defensive linemen don’t make more than one move on a play, so Livings’ inconsistency is almost entirely down to whether he gets set early, or whether he finds himself behind the eight ball on a play.



Totality of the Circumstances

Livings evidently finds it easier to get into position early in pass protection than he does run blocking. He has actually graded positively (though never exactly well) in pass protection three of the past four seasons. Last year, the average guard in the NFL allowed 21.8 total pressures (sacks, knockdowns and hurries). Livings allowed 21, a bit better than the average but only barely. 2010 was an unusually poor year for him in this regard as he finished below every other left guard except Kory Lichtensteiger in our rankings.

The negatives combine to balance out his ability and good performances and drag his average downward. Last season, he had poor games against Denver, Seattle, Cleveland and the playoff game against Houston. This was in addition to the nightmare outing against the Jaguars. Looking through our grading profiles, Livings was graded positively more often than all but four other guards in the NFL. On the other hand, he was graded negatively more often than all but six.

He has the ability to dominate on any given play, and even across entire games if things fall right for him. Yet, he has never been able to put together a string of impressive performances without poor games in between. Simply put, sooner or later the bad games come out. Dallas might think they can coach out the negatives from his game, get him into a good position early on a more consistent basis, and erase the negatives that poor positioning leads to, and if they can, they may well produce a truly impressive player.

The only problem with that theory is that the Bengals’ offensive line coach, Paul Alexander, is widely considered to be one of the best line coaches in the NFL. Alexander has a fine track record with offensive linemen, especially in terms of tuning technique and improving fundamentals. It has to be noted that even he hasn’t been able to do any better with Livings than what we have seen.

The Cowboys might be banking on Bill Callahan doing a better job, though that will certainly be a challenge. The Cowboys have committed a long term contract to a player that has never shown the ability to eliminate the negatives, and has always graded worse than the league-average at the position. Nate Livings is one of the most inconsistent players out there, but when all the games get accounted for, he has remained consistent in only one area–a negative overall grade.
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Old 05-01-2012, 06:10 PM    (permalink
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I understand the analysis on Livings aside from one piece. He is not committed to a long term contract. Not sure why this belief exists.

We are married to him for 2 years. If he sucks he is cut. He has to earn the additional years as it will be more expensive to keep him than cut him after 2 years. See below.



Cutting him after the 2013 season saves us 2 million. He has extremely low payouts early in the contract that scale up towards the end. If he isn't performing as a top guard he won't be seeing the final years.

Pure and simple this is a cheap reclamation project (Columbo!) which will either pay out big for us or will end up being a footnote on page 12 when we cut him.
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Old 05-02-2012, 02:57 PM    (permalink
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As much as we loved the thought of Rambo... we all know now that Garrett wouldn't touch his ass. Oh well, moving on...
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Old 05-02-2012, 02:59 PM    (permalink
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trogdor View Post
I understand the analysis on Livings aside from one piece. He is not committed to a long term contract. Not sure why this belief exists.

We are married to him for 2 years. If he sucks he is cut. He has to earn the additional years as it will be more expensive to keep him than cut him after 2 years. See below.



Cutting him after the 2013 season saves us 2 million. He has extremely low payouts early in the contract that scale up towards the end. If he isn't performing as a top guard he won't be seeing the final years.

Pure and simple this is a cheap reclamation project (Columbo!) which will either pay out big for us or will end up being a footnote on page 12 when we cut him.
I don't think anyone disagrees with you there. In fact, I'm liking the signing more and more and am excited to see how it pans out.
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:22 PM    (permalink
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The NFL lost a class act in Junior Seau today. So sad as he was probably a better man than football player, and thats saying something as he is a sure fire hall of famer and member of the 90's decade team. RIP Junior
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:23 PM    (permalink
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The NFL lost a class act in Junior Seau today. So sad as he was probably a better man than football player, and thats saying something as he is a sure fire hall of famer and member of the 90's decade team. RIP Junior
Greatest LB to ever play the game as far as I'm concerned, but yea it sucks.
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:24 PM    (permalink
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Greatest LB to ever play the game as far as I'm concerned, but yea it sucks.
Wow, that's freaking high praise!
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:45 PM    (permalink
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Wow, that's freaking high praise!
The '94 AFC Championship game is one of my earliest football memories as a kid, and Seau was literally all over the field. That stuck with me, and when I started playing football as a youth I wanted to be like Junior. I've always followed his career from a far and really admired the way he played the game.

But you already know how great he was, you're the resident USC homer! lol
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:53 PM    (permalink
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The '94 AFC Championship game is one of my earliest football memories as a kid, and Seau was literally all over the field. That stuck with me, and when I started playing football as a youth I wanted to be like Junior. I've always followed his career from a far and really admired the way he played the game.

But you already know how great he was, you're the resident USC homer! lol
The DEFINITION of high character. This is completely shocking. He had a huge Hawaii following too.
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Old 05-03-2012, 04:15 PM    (permalink
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Stephen Jones talking about Costa... they really are sticking to their guns here. Keep saying how much they love him. If he pans out, that's props to them for keeping the believe alive. Honestly, we were harsh on what was essentially his rookie season. He has time to turn it around. Yes, he's a bit undersized with short arms, but the team hopes that with bigger OGs next to him, that he'll perform better. We'll have to see.

We do have options... Bernadeau, Arkin, Kowalski and even Nagy who played C at Wisconsin are so so backups, I guess.

If you wanna listen to it all:
http://www.dallascowboys.com/multime...56F61665694817

Last edited by D-Unit : 05-03-2012 at 06:46 PM.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:07 PM    (permalink
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For anyone who has twitter , Bryan Broaddus is giving live analysis from the rookie mini camp.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:26 PM    (permalink
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For anyone who has twitter , Bryan Broaddus is giving live analysis from the rookie mini camp.
Yeah, some neat stuff.

https://twitter.com/#%21/BryanBroaddus

https://twitter.com/#%21/robphillips3

https://twitter.com/#%21/DCStarJEllis
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Old 05-04-2012, 05:10 PM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by D-Unit View Post
Stephen Jones talking about Costa... they really are sticking to their guns here. Keep saying how much they love him. If he pans out, that's props to them for keeping the believe alive. Honestly, we were harsh on what was essentially his rookie season. He has time to turn it around. Yes, he's a bit undersized with short arms, but the team hopes that with bigger OGs next to him, that he'll perform better. We'll have to see.

We do have options... Bernadeau, Arkin, Kowalski and even Nagy who played C at Wisconsin are so so backups, I guess.

If you wanna listen to it all:
http://www.dallascowboys.com/multime...56F61665694817
i really hope they dont go into this season with all their eggs in costa as the center again. honestly i wanna see what kowalski can do with a year of strength training
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Old 05-04-2012, 06:29 PM    (permalink
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Some notes from ESPN Dallas

IRVING, Texas -- Making instant evaluations off two rookie mini-camp practices can be dangerous to a personís health, but here are some observations from the Cowboys sessions Friday:

** Kyle Wilber is active. Thatís what the Cowboys thought they were getting in the Wake Forest linebacker. He has a quick first step off the ball and was able to track down running back Darrell Scott from behind in the morning practice.

** Defensive end Tyrone Crawford had a would-be sack of Nathan Dick in the first workout thanks to being unblocked, but he was able to get up the field in more competitive situations.

** Linebacker Caleb McSurdy was able to knock away a Larry Smith pass to tight end James Hanna but on the next play was not as fortunate, with Hanna getting a step on him on an out cut.

** Troy Woolfolk is listed as a cornerback but he played safety Friday. He intercepted a pass that was tipped by linebacker Adrian Hamilton. On the next play Wilber deflected a pass that Lionel Smith intercepted.

** It was difficult to get a read on the wide receivers and tight ends because the timing of the passing game was a mess.

**Tight end Andrew Szczerba made a nice one-handed grab down the middle of the field in the morning practice but was unable to finish the session because of an injury. He practiced in the afternoon. Wide receiver Donavon Kemp sat out of the afternoon workout.

** Cornerback Isaac Madison made a nice breakup of a deep ball from Smith to Cole Beasley.

** Like he did at training camp and all through last season, Jason Garrett had officials at practice. At different times flags were flying, including a handful for lining up offside.
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:56 AM    (permalink
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Kyle Wilber sounds like he's tearing up camp, even going into Day 2. Nice nice!

Josh Ellis ‏ @DCStarJEllis
Kyle Wilber just tossed little running back Lance Dunbar like a rag doll. #Mean
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:22 PM    (permalink
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I'm glad to see someone step up, and I think he's a perfect candidate

Quote:
http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d...headline_stack
Sean Lee wants to be Dallas Cowboys' defensive leader

NFL.com
Published: May 5, 2012 at 09:26 a.m.

Dallas Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee has heard the criticism that his team lacks a leader in the locker room, and he's ready to step into the role in his third year.

In February, defensive end Jason Hatcher questioned whether the Cowboys had a player who could keep everyone in the locker room accountable. Cowboys coach Jason Garrett responded by saying there was nothing wrong with the team's dynamic.

Working at the team's practice facility Friday, Lee said he would call out any issues that might arise among the players.

"If there's something that needs to be addressed I have no problem addressing it," Lee told the Dallas Morning News. "I think all my teammates realize that I have their back. I want to see them do the best.

"I want to see our team win a Super Bowl and be successful, so I have no problem stepping up and saying something if I find something that I feel is wrong."

After a second-year campaign in which he became a starter and led the team in tackles (105) and interceptions (four), Lee said his next step would be becoming a more vocal presence.

"I think playing more last year, being a guy that makes the calls in the huddle, I'm definitely going to have to step up from a leadership standpoint on the field and off the field," said Lee, who was sporting a red Texas Rangers hat. "I got a ton of great guys on the team right now to look up to. Guys like obviously Tony (Romo), Jason (Witten) and DeMarcus (Ware). So, there are a lot of guys that I'm looking up to and trying to be like, but at the same time, trying to become a better leader myself."
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:13 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by bigmac076 View Post
I'm glad to see someone step up, and I think he's a perfect candidate
I love Lee, but sometimes when you have to say you're going to step up and be a leader, it's already too late.
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:26 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by dsc1600 View Post
I love Lee, but sometimes when you have to say you're going to step up and be a leader, it's already too late.
Unless he has already asserted it in the locker room and just said it for a "rah rah" with the media. The things players say to the media and what they say to teammates are normally entirely different. Perception is reality when it comes to the media and fans.
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:35 AM    (permalink
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http://espn.go.com/blog/dallas/cowbo...-moving-to-end

What is the definition of insanity again? haha
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Old 05-07-2012, 12:39 PM    (permalink
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I'm conflicted on Rat being moved to DE....You do not need a prototypical big ass NT. If anything..RAT needs help on each side, more than he needs to be moved. I guarantee if Hatcher comes into his own, and we find another DE on the other side, Rat will continue to be as dominant as ever. He's going to beat most Centers when he's not double teamed, his quickness does that...at DE he's facing more athletic tackles, and still facing double teams.

Cowboysnation.com is doing a really good write up this entire week on the subject actually.
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Old 05-07-2012, 01:15 PM    (permalink
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I love Lee, but sometimes when you have to say you're going to step up and be a leader, it's already too late.
I don't think that applies in Lee's case. Last year was the first time he really started getting playing time over the vets (James/Brooking). With those guys around, you can understand why Lee did not disrespect them by trying to step over their toes as leaders. Bradie was a team captain, who just lost his spot. Lee was smart enough to treat the situation respectfully. With them gone, he seemed the natural replacement, and I'm glad he's voicing it now.

Nice to see him at the Cowboys rookie minicamp talking to the new rookies and working out with them, giving them advice, etc. He's just a natural born leader.

Last edited by D-Unit : 05-07-2012 at 06:48 PM.
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Old 05-07-2012, 01:18 PM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by FreshBoy! View Post
I'm conflicted on Rat being moved to DE....You do not need a prototypical big ass NT. If anything..RAT needs help on each side, more than he needs to be moved. I guarantee if Hatcher comes into his own, and we find another DE on the other side, Rat will continue to be as dominant as ever. He's going to beat most Centers when he's not double teamed, his quickness does that...at DE he's facing more athletic tackles, and still facing double teams.

Cowboysnation.com is doing a really good write up this entire week on the subject actually.
This is why I liked the idea of us grabbing Brockers. Glad the Cowboys were planning on going that direction if they stayed at 14 because it shows this was on their mind. Keeping Rat at NT is fine if you rotate him, and better yet, surround him with big bodies.
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Old 05-08-2012, 06:33 PM    (permalink
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Wow, didnt see this one coming
Per ESPN

Akwasi Owusu-Ansah is getting another chance with the Cowboys after the club claimed him off waivers from Jacksonville on Tuesday.

A fourth-round pick in 2010, Owusu-Ansah was cut by the Cowboys on Nov. 30, 2011, after playing in three games on special teams. He joined the Jaguarsí practice squad and was called up to the active roster for the final four games, starting twice. He finished with 14 tackles.

Owusu-Ansah was converted to safety after the Cowboys drafted him but his development was hurt by shoulder surgery coming out of Indiana (Pa.). He played in seven games as a rookie, working mostly as a returner, before an ankle injury ended his season. Last year, the Cowboys eventually moved him to wide receiver before his release last season.

He is expected to play either safety or cornerback in his return.

The team also claimed kicker Jake Rogers off waivers from Tampa Bay, leaving the roster at 89. With the release of David Buehler and Kai Forbath earlier in the offseason, the Cowboys had only one kicker, Dan Bailey, on the roster. Rogers, who left as the University of Cincinnatiís all-time leading scorer, can also punt. He also has spent time with New Orleans.
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Old 05-08-2012, 09:07 PM    (permalink
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I don't mind them bringing back AOA, he's not the KR we expected but I thought he caught a tough break with injuries, the lockout and constant position changes... and on top of that he was a small school guy making the jump to the NFL.

I remember when we drafted him, I really thought he was going to be the answer at FS haha. My expectations aren't nearly as high this time around, but his potential still semi-intrigues me.
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