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Brandon Carr vs. Terence Newman. PLUS
T-New was finished as a top corner. Carr has to be better than T-New, but at least Orlando Scandrick and he has to stay healthier than Mike Jenkins. This is an upgrade, but Brandon Carr is not Prime Time.
Kevin Ogletree/TBD vs. Laurent Robinson. MINUS
Robinson was the team's most reliable route runner and had quickly become a go-to for Tony Romo. He got stupid money from Jacksonville, and he had to take it but this is a loss. Unless Dez Braynt starts to developing into a reliable producer, Robinson's departure creates a serious void that no one on this roster can fill.
Dan Connor/Bruce Carter vs. Bradie James/Keith Brooking. PLUS
Both James and Brooking had fallen off dramatically, and the Cowboys had to go younger here. Don't expect Connor to make plays. Expect him to just be there and not screw up.
This position is about Sean Lee and the development of second-year player Carter, who basically did nothing his rookie year because he was recovering from an injury.
Brodney Pool vs. Abe Elam. WASH
Elam was signed one season ago to a one-year deal to play safety, and really didn't produce much. Pool (left) was signed to a one-year deal, and his previous numbers suggests he will produce more than Elam. Either way, the safety spot for the Cowboys remains a serious issue.
TBD vs. Martellus Bennett. PLUS
Bennett is a nice, fun, jovial guy and someone whose physical skills suggests he could have been so, so much more. I don't expect him to do much with his new team, the New York Giants.
FB Lawrence Vickers vs. Tony Fiammetta MINUS
Fiametta had developed into a solid lead blocker, and was a nice receiver for Romo out of the backfield. Vickers is a good lead blocker, as Arian Foster knows from running behind him in Houston, but he's not as versatile as Fiammetta.
QB Kyle Orton vs. Jon Kitna WASH
Orton is a solid backup, as was Kitna, who retired. Both were able to make positive plays and win a game or two, but if you are counting on either to win a lot of games you're screwed.
OG Mackenzy Bernadeau vs. TBD WASH
Depends on whom Bernadeau replaces. The interior of this offensive line is in a major need of an upgrade, and this has the look of trading this OK guy for that OK guy.
OVERALL IMPACT: There appear to upgrades in a lot of these moves, but there remain serious issues: The interior of the offensive line, the development of Dez Bryant, a defensive front seven that is overrated in terms of applying quality pressure, and a secondary that remains suspect.
Are these the types of moves that can make them 11-5, or leave them looking at 8-8 again?
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