The Dallas Cowboys have made some significant changes to their defensive coaching staff this offseason. Now, their attention turns to the roster.
The first order of business for this new regime led by new defensive coordinator Dan Quinn is to determine which of his pending free agents the Cowboys should re-sign. Here are the top three for consideration …
Aldon Smith, DE
Recording 4.0 sacks in his first three games, pass rusher Aldon Smith appeared to be every bit the All-Pro that dominated the league during his time with the San Francisco 49ers.
Unfortunately, his five-year layoff out of the league took its toll as Smith would record only a single sack the rest of the season.
With Randy Gregory returning from his most recent suspension midseason and playing well, re-signing Smith isn’t a necessity.
But as you can never have enough pass rushers, re-signing Smith would be wise, but only at the right price.
Chidobe Awuzie, CB
Former second-round selection, cornerback Chidobe Awuzie, didn’t have an ideal season in his final year of his rookie deal as he played just eight games due to injury.
The Cowboys have started a secondary revolution with the selection of corner Trevon Diggs in the second round of the 2020 draft. That trend should continue in April.
Still, the Cowboys would be smart to retain either Awuzie or Jourdan Lewis in order to act as a bridge player for their younger peers.
Xavier Woods, S
A sixth-round selection back in 2017, safety Xavier Woods has exceeded his humble draft status. And while he’s been a consistent starter in the secondary, his play has been less than spectacular.
Not one to give up big plays, Woods doesn’t make them either. With the emergence of Donovan Wilson this past season, Quinn could decide to upgrade from Woods via either free agency or the draft.
The Cowboys could also easily decide to bring Woods back in 2021 to help keep a veteran presence among a very young group. But he certainly can’t be viewed as the long-term solution.