If you are the Cowboys' general manager -- yeah, right, like they would ever have a general manager -- what would be your first priority this off-season?
Cast your vote, or post in the comments below.
Clarence E. Hill Jr., beat writer: The first priority of the off-season is to hire a new general manager, but absent that pipe dream, then the Cowboys need to try to sign Saints guard Carl Nicks in free agency to upgrade the O-line, so they can focus on signing a cornerback with the 14th pick in the draft.
Charean Williams, beat writer: This game has become about two things -- the quarterback and pass rushers. If you don't have both, you don't have a chance. The Packers didn't win the Super Bowl this year because of their pass rush. The Patriots, when they absolutely needed to pressure Eli Manning, couldn't. That's why they didn't lift the Vince Lombardi Trophy, and the Giants did. The Ravens, Texans and 49ers didn't make the Super Bowl because of their quarterbacks. The Cowboys have the quarterback. They have a pass-rusher. They need more than one pass-rusher, as the Giants showed in their postseason run. Free agency doesn't offer many choices, so the Cowboys should draft the best one there for them at No. 14, and then keep drafting them. Amazing how much the rest of the defense, including the secondary, will be helped by more than one consistent pass-rusher.
Carlos Mendez, beat writer: Offensive line. It's not strong enough up the middle. There's a running back in town who might be pretty good if he can get some reliable blocks between the guard spots. What the Cowboys had there last year, a couple of fair pros in Montrae Holland and Kyle Kosier, got the job done for a while. But the season took a toll on them, and now they're a year older. The center, Phil Costa, was clearly overpowered in some games. Behind them right now, the Cowboys have youngsters David Arkin (never active in his rookie year), Kevin Kowalski (promising) and Bill Nagy (hurt early), along with 12-year vet Derrick Dockery. But more than run blocking, the interior OL needs to protect. Jerry Jones is clear about that -- the No. 1 thing on his mind is protecting Tony Romo so Romo's prime years aren't wasted. Costa and his mates didn't seem to get the hang of handling twists and stunts, even the basic ones. If I'm the Cowboys general manager, I'm bringing in another veteran guard and drafting the Stanford kid.
David Humphrey, editor: My first priority would be a lock-down cornerback who has size. I emphasize size. The big receivers around the league are winning the majority of the battles on the outside. Being in position to make a play and making a play are two different things.