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Old 08-10-2013, 02:32 PM    (permalink
Trogdor
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Game Starters review from BtB:

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Old 08-10-2013, 04:12 PM    (permalink
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Not a Cowboys fan but I am really intrigued by what you guys are going to be doing schematically on defense to combat the Read Option. I hope Kiffin is able to come up with a blue print to combat the proliferation of basketball on grass that has taken over the game the past few years.

The Kiffin hiring is one of the most intriguing of this offseason.
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Old 08-11-2013, 09:58 PM    (permalink
Trogdor
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Quote:
Calvin Watkins @calvinwatkins
Cowboys have made an offer to Brian Waters and are waiting on him.
If this happens...

Smith - Leary - Frederick - Waters - Free

...Dallas turned last years horrible weakness into a borderline strength.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:44 AM    (permalink
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If this happens...

Smith - Leary - Frederick - Waters - Free

...Dallas turned last years horrible weakness into a borderline strength.
On paper it looks decent as long as Leary keeps developing and Free doesn't play like he did last year.

However, isn't anyone concerned that Waters has been out of football for a year? At his age you do not just take a year off and come back playing at the same level.
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Old 08-12-2013, 01:47 PM    (permalink
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Not a Cowboys fan but I am really intrigued by what you guys are going to be doing schematically on defense to combat the Read Option. I hope Kiffin is able to come up with a blue print to combat the proliferation of basketball on grass that has taken over the game the past few years.

The Kiffin hiring is one of the most intriguing of this offseason.
Didn't work for him at USC, so I don't have much hope for him in that department. But against traditional plays, the D should be reacting more quickly and swarming to the ball. Intriguing is a good word for him. I think there will be highs and lows.

Key is health and the OL for Dallas to be successful this year.
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Old 08-12-2013, 09:32 PM    (permalink
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Coach Jason Garrett says second-round TE Gavin Escobar has "got to get stronger."
"He knows that; we know that," Garrett continued. "He just has to keep working at it. But one of the things I have been impressed with has been his nastiness and his toughness." Escobar has been invisible during camp and two preseason games. He's caught just one pass for three yards, and Pro Football Focus has Escobar graded out as the worst run-blocking tight end so far this preseason.
Hate to keep railing on our draft but thats pathetic! Wasted pick.
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Old 08-12-2013, 09:41 PM    (permalink
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One preseason game is certainly enough to evaluate a prospect and label him a waste....don't be ridiculous

I'm guessing the idea behind the Escobar selection was to have a player who could stretch the middle of the defense, especially if Witten is required to stay in-line and block. It was no mystery that Escobar wasn't a plus blocker coming out of San Diego State so don't act like the words of Garrett or PFF come as a surprise.
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Old 08-12-2013, 09:48 PM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by pocketaces View Post
Coach Jason Garrett says second-round TE Gavin Escobar has "got to get stronger."
"He knows that; we know that," Garrett continued. "He just has to keep working at it. But one of the things I have been impressed with has been his nastiness and his toughness." Escobar has been invisible during camp and two preseason games. He's caught just one pass for three yards, and Pro Football Focus has Escobar graded out as the worst run-blocking tight end so far this preseason.
Hate to keep railing on our draft but thats pathetic! Wasted pick.
It's fine to rail on the draft. Because if we don't win a SB this year then the draft was crap right?

I don't expect this kind of overreaction by you pocketaces. The reason why Escobar was drafted that high was because of his skills as a receiving TE and Garrett's wish to play more 2 TE sets. Not because he was a complete TE ready to start on Day 1 as a finished product.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:12 PM    (permalink
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#1 we've played TWO preseason games. #2 He SUCKS as a blocker college and pro. #3 We already had the stretch the field TE on the roster with Hannah and if we wanted/needed another TE (we didnt) then take Eifert and get a pro bowler. Yeah Im Debbie downer but 1 playoff win in, whats it been now 19 years, gives me the right to question some of these decisions and/or picks.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:22 PM    (permalink
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#1 we've played TWO preseason games. #2 He SUCKS as a blocker college and pro. #3 We already had the stretch the field TE on the roster with Hannah and if we wanted/needed another TE (we didnt) then take Eifert and get a pro bowler. Yeah Im Debbie downer but 1 playoff win in, whats it been now 19 years, gives me the right to question some of these decisions and/or picks.
I don't count the HOF game as a game....

Hanna is a nice player but he's not the receiving and difference making threat that Escobar is for the passing attack. I feel if the Cowboys would've select Eifert then there'd be complaints that they didn't address the offensive line.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:31 PM    (permalink
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I don't count the HOF game as a game....

Hanna is a nice player but he's not the receiving and difference making threat that Escobar is for the passing attack. I feel if the Cowboys would've select Eifert then there'd be complaints that they didn't address the offensive line.
They had 6 more picks to address the O-line and some think (me) that Fredrick would have been there when we picked in the 2nd anyway. I disagree about Hannah vs. Escobar. Hannah can catch and is MUCH faster than Escobar but Escobar does have great hands. IMO Escobar will be the 3RD TE at best. We'll see whos right once the season starts.
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Old 08-13-2013, 07:02 AM    (permalink
Trogdor
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Coaches are reportedly "shocked" when Dez drops a ball. Says his hands are among the best they have coached. Pretty high praise. Then again I think in half the practice reports I read he makes a stupefying one-handed catch in them.

As far as Hanna vs Escobar they play different positions. Yes they both play TEs but there's a massive difference between an in-line TE and H-back role compared to a flex, off-line TE. Hanna is a seam splitter and has legit 4.49 speed. He runs like a big WR. Escobar is a very big receiver TE. He isn't fast and he is RAW with his blocking technique. His frame though will allow him to develop into a solid blocker while Hanna will always be a receiving TE with minimal blocking upside. PF28 saying that Hanna isn't a difference making threat while Escobar is.... just silly. Hanna is going to surprise people. He's way too fast to be covered by a LB and if safeties are watching him it means they aren't helping out in containing Dez.

[Edit]: Checked 40 times the difference in speed between Hanna and Escobar is immense. Escobar (4.84) vs Hanna (4.49). Escobar will certainly be a nice red zone target but barring a blocking revelation I don't see him hitting the field too often.

With pocket here on the depth chart issue though. It's almost certainly Witten being backed up by Escobar and Hanna being the 2nd TE used as a flex and "+" receiver.



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Originally Posted by SolidGold View Post
Not a Cowboys fan but I am really intrigued by what you guys are going to be doing schematically on defense to combat the Read Option. I hope Kiffin is able to come up with a blue print to combat the proliferation of basketball on grass that has taken over the game the past few years.

The Kiffin hiring is one of the most intriguing of this offseason.
Not a fair assessment but the Raiders backups with Pryor ran it pretty effectively against our backups. With four down lineman and Sean Lee and Bruce Carter patrolling I don't see it being an overly effective strategy against us.

Quote:
In the morning walkthrough, the Cowboys ran a couple of zone reads, using Dwayne Harris as a QB to simulate some of the zone-read offenses the Cowboys may face this year.

"It’s kind of a copycat league in a lot of ways, so other teams will certainly see what those teams have done and probably make it part of what they do on offense," Garrett said. "So we have to be ready for it."

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Old 08-13-2013, 02:41 PM    (permalink
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OXNARD, Calif. – Gavin Escobar will probably never be a good blocker. The question is whether he can be a good enough blocker to get on the field.

Escobar remains behind James Hanna on the Cowboys’ tight end depth chart and his blocking deficiencies have been exposed in the first two preseason games. Escobar has the worst run-blocking grade of any player this preseason, according to ProFootballFocus.com’s data.

“I work on it every day and try to take pride in it,” Escobar said. “It’s definitely gotten better, but it’s always got to improve.”

The Cowboys knew Escobar, a part-time player as a sophomore at San Diego State because of his struggles as a blocker, would need time to develop in that facet of the game. They believed his potential as a pass-catcher justified using a second-round pick on him.

Second-round picks are expected to make an immediate impact, however. It’s hard to envision that happening for Escobar as a rookie if he can’t beat out Hanna.

"He’s developing. He really is," Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. "He’s a natural pass catcher. He can run routes and get away from people. He hasn’t had a lot of opportunities in games to do that up to this point. The thing where he’s getting better and better is blocking, both as a run blocker and as a pass protector.

“That’s not his strength coming into this thing, but he has the traits physically to be able to do that. He’s got to get stronger. He knows that; we know that. He just has to keep working at it. But one of the things I have been impressed with has been his nastiness and his toughness. He’s not afraid to stick his nose in there in any facet of the game, and that’s a good sign."

The 6-foot-6, 249-pound Escobar isn’t going to get significantly stronger during the season. That’s the kind of development that comes during the offseason.

“It’s really all technique,” Escobar said. “You can move a guy that’s bigger than you or hold him up at least with the right technique. That’s what it’s all about, getting the right technique and footwork all the time and just being consistent with that.”
Maybe folks should stick to their teams thread where they might know more about whats going on? Maybe the guy will turn into something in a few years but personally I want my 2nd rounder to be a major factor THIS year. We didnt need to blow a 2nd rounder on a TE with the holes we have in other areas. Just my opinion.
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Old 08-13-2013, 02:46 PM    (permalink
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I felt the same way about Bruce Carter, PA. I wanted a 2nd rounder that produced NOW. I don't feel super duper fricken awesome about the Escobar pick myself, but I will remain hopeful. It's gonna take time though. Hopefully by the 2nd half of the season at least he'll be able to have an impact as a receiver.

I wanted a Safety pretty dang badly with that pick. Though JJ Wilcox might end up being a better player than some of those Safeties taken ahead of him. He had a nice pick in the endzone last week! woop woop!
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Old 08-13-2013, 03:30 PM    (permalink
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I felt the same way about Bruce Carter, PA. I wanted a 2nd rounder that produced NOW. I don't feel super duper fricken awesome about the Escobar pick myself, but I will remain hopeful. It's gonna take time though. Hopefully by the 2nd half of the season at least he'll be able to have an impact as a receiver.

I wanted a Safety pretty dang badly with that pick. Though JJ Wilcox might end up being a better player than some of those Safeties taken ahead of him. He had a nice pick in the endzone last week! woop woop!
Its one thing drafting a 1st round talent knowing hes going to get a redshirt to recover from injury and another to draft a guy in the 2nd and watching him get his ass kicked daily. If everybody stays healthy I dont see him getting much PT unless its in a blowout or something. Wilcox is looking like a solid pick. Webb, not so much :-/
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Old 08-13-2013, 05:04 PM    (permalink
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Its one thing drafting a 1st round talent knowing hes going to get a redshirt to recover from injury and another to draft a guy in the 2nd and watching him get his ass kicked daily. If everybody stays healthy I dont see him getting much PT unless its in a blowout or something. Wilcox is looking like a solid pick. Webb, not so much :-/
Depends. Garrett needs to use him right. Send him out catching passes instead of using him as a blocker.

Sure would've been nice to have a crystal ball though. I wonder if we could've gotten Eiftert in Round 1 and Frederick in Round 2.
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Old 08-13-2013, 05:44 PM    (permalink
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Depends. Garrett needs to use him right. Send him out catching passes instead of using him as a blocker.

Sure would've been nice to have a crystal ball though. I wonder if we could've gotten Eiftert in Round 1 and Frederick in Round 2.
Already had/have that guy! How about NO TE's and draft positions we actually need? Doesnt take a crystal ball to see what our weakness was going into the draft, cant seem to remember anybody saying we sure could use a 3rd team TE in the 2nd round.
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Old 08-13-2013, 05:50 PM    (permalink
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As far as Hanna vs Escobar they play different positions. Yes they both play TEs but there's a massive difference between an in-line TE and H-back role compared to a flex, off-line TE. Hanna is a seam splitter and has legit 4.49 speed. He runs like a big WR. Escobar is a very big receiver TE. He isn't fast and he is RAW with his blocking technique. His frame though will allow him to develop into a solid blocker while Hanna will always be a receiving TE with minimal blocking upside. PF28 saying that Hanna isn't a difference making threat while Escobar is.... just silly. Hanna is going to surprise people. He's way too fast to be covered by a LB and if safeties are watching him it means they aren't helping out in containing Dez.
Hanna does have more straight line speed than Escobar, but in the NFL or even in college (where he played in a pass happy offense), when has he taken the top off a defense or dominated the middle of the field? Do his abilities suggest he has the potential to be that type of player? Sure but I have never seen it from him.
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Old 08-13-2013, 06:06 PM    (permalink
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Hanna does have more straight line speed than Escobar, but in the NFL or even in college (where he played in a pass happy offense), when has he taken the top off a defense or dominated the middle of the field? Do his abilities suggest he has the potential to be that type of player? Sure but I have never seen it from him.
sigh. Fine I'll bite again.



First play he runs past the LB for a long gain.

Second play he runs past the LB AND SAFETY for a long gain and TD.

Third play he runs and out and accelerates so quickly the safety is near out of the frame when he catches the ball.

Throughout the clip he's either behind or running away from a LB and typically did the same to safeties. Was he dominant? Absolutely not that's why he slipped despite having all the athletic markers. Did he display the ability to run the seam and make people look like they were in quicksand? Absolutely.
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Old 08-13-2013, 06:16 PM    (permalink
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sigh. Fine I'll bite again.



First play he runs past the LB for a long gain.

Second play he runs past the LB AND SAFETY for a long gain and TD.

Third play he runs and out and accelerates so quickly the safety is near out of the frame when he catches the ball.

Throughout the clip he's either behind or running away from a LB and typically did the same to safeties. Was he dominant? Absolutely not that's why he slipped despite having all the athletic markers. Did he display the ability to run the seam and make people look like they were in quicksand? Absolutely.
Let me say as an OU season ticket holder, we dont use the TE much. Bradford used Griesham alot but after they both went on to the NFL they focused on throwing to the WRs 80% of the time. I'd take Hannah as a 6th rounder over Escobar in the 2nd everyday of the week.
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Old 08-13-2013, 06:35 PM    (permalink
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Let me say as an OU season ticket holder, we dont use the TE much. Bradford used Griesham alot but after they both went on to the NFL they focused on throwing to the WRs 80% of the time. I'd take Hannah as a 6th rounder over Escobar in the 2nd everyday of the week.
Agreed. That being said Hanna will never develop into anything more than a receiving TE. The blocking aspect is limited by his frame.

Escobar has the frame and potential to be an all-around TE which we will SORELY need whenever Witten decides to hang-em up. Considering how much weight the team put on wanting to use the "12" formations it made the pick easy.

Out of all our picks Escobar was definitely my least favorite but I can understand the rationale and will give it time to see how he develops. Even with him being a 2nd rounder I fully expected him to be the 3rd TE and RZ TE. Two TE sets require someone who can run the seams to prevent the other team from cheating against the run and lets face it while Witten runs perfect routes he has absolutely no speed left. So as long as we are not talking about Escobar losing the 3rd TE spot to Rosario I'm not freting as he will be the #1 backup for Witten in the 2 TE formations.
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Old 08-13-2013, 06:57 PM    (permalink
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Already had/have that guy! How about NO TE's and draft positions we actually need? Doesnt take a crystal ball to see what our weakness was going into the draft, cant seem to remember anybody saying we sure could use a 3rd team TE in the 2nd round.
Escobar can grow into something more than Hanna though. You're complaining about what he is right now. He was drafted for what he can become.

Garrett was horny for offense. I tried to make my thoughts clear that I had a STRONG hunch we were going with an offensive heavy draft. Ya'll heard me say it multiple times over and over. But I have to say even for myself that pick was a surprise. That said, he wasn't drafted to be our future 3rd team TE. He was drafted to be a starting TE in 2 TE sets with the idea that he is the future after Witten is done. ...and for the record, he can STILL end up doing that.
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Old 08-13-2013, 07:05 PM    (permalink
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Escobar can grow into something more than Hanna though. You're complaining about what he is right now. He was drafted for what he can become.

Garrett was horny for offense. I tried to make my thoughts clear that I had a STRONG hunch we were going with an offensive heavy draft. Ya'll heard me say it multiple times over and over. But I have to say even for myself that pick was a surprise. That said, he wasn't drafted to be our future 3rd team TE. He was drafted to be a starting TE in 2 TE sets with the idea that he is the future after Witten is done. ...and for the record, he can STILL end up doing that.
Like I said, we had/have MAJOR holes. To spend a 2nd rounder for a guy who may or may not have upside in a year or two is bad team management IMO. I didnt mind the offensive heavy draft if that meant 2 guards, a center, and a tackle ;) A guy like Escobar can be found in almost any draft, this wasnt the year to use a primo pick on a TE.
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Old 08-13-2013, 07:09 PM    (permalink
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Like I said, we had/have MAJOR holes. To spend a 2nd rounder for a guy who may or may not have upside in a year or two is bad team management IMO. I didnt mind the offensive heavy draft if that meant 2 guards, a center, and a tackle ;)
I think they also considered BPA. They said they had a 1st round grade on him, IIRC.

We've been lucky to have a healthy Witten, but he's getting older. Banking on him to stay healthy is starting to get riskier.
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Old 08-13-2013, 07:10 PM    (permalink
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Like I said, we had/have MAJOR holes. To spend a 2nd rounder for a guy who may or may not have upside in a year or two is bad team management IMO. I didnt mind the offensive heavy draft if that meant 2 guards, a center, and a tackle ;) A guy like Escobar can be found in almost any draft, this wasnt the year to use a primo pick on a TE.
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I think they also considered BPA. They said they had a 1st round grade on him, IIRC.

We've been lucky to have a healthy Witten, but he's getting older. Banking on him to stay healthy is starting to get riskier.
Exactly! You can't approach the draft as a hole filling exercise. You draft for FUTURE years. Sometimes you get lucky and the future/present best pick meet but drafting for immediate needs means you are going to be reaching for players.

If we spent a 2nd rounder and he pans out as the future beyond Witten I am 100% beyond satisfied with the pick.
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