Dallas Cowboys: Jerheme Urban

IRVING, Texas -- The Cowboys have youth at the wide receiver, center and running back spots.

Receivers who are on the market -- such as Patrick Crayton, Plaxico Burress or Jerheme Urban -- could make for good No. 3s.

Available veteran running backs who could be of interest include Patrick Cobbs and Cedric Benson.

The market for a center seems weak with Jason Brown and Scott Mruczkowski being the best of the bunch.

Don't expect the Cowboys to sign any one of those players any time soon.

"I don’t know at this time until we see where we are at these OTAs and minicamp and see where we are at training camp," Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said. "I like what I see, and we’re going to get what we bargained for with our free agents and our veteran free agents in the offensive line."

The Cowboys have signed veteran players this offseason: Brandon Carr, Brodney Pool, Nate Livings, Dan Connor and Mackenzy Bernadeau.

Carr received the biggest contract, $50.1 million over five seasons. Livings and Bernadeau signed for a combined $30 million.

The center position might be an issue if Phil Costa, last year's starter, struggles, but the Cowboys are impressed with him thus far.

"I know just the initial work, and that’s questionable without pads on, (offensive line coach) Bill (Callahan) likes what Costa is showing us out there at center and that’s important to me," Jones said. "I think some of the things that we’ve done with the potential coming-on of (offensive lineman David) Arkin and the way these young guys are looking. All of that looks like that we may have found some answers there in the middle for us that when we ended the season, I wasn’t so quite sure about. So I think all of that if it continues to come together from my perspective will make me quit looking other places."
The NFL announced recently that teams can have up to 90 players on their roster heading into training camp.

With the Cowboys adding cornerback Akwasi Owusu-Ansah on Tuesday, they have 88 players on their roster and more are on the way as the team is expected to sign some players who tried out last weekend at Valley Ranch.

But the free-agency period is still ongoing and it begs a question: Should the Cowboys sign a veteran free agent?

We look at three positions that could use a veteran.

Wide receiver: The starters are Dez Bryant and Miles Austin, talented and explosive players. The No. 3 receiver is uncertain. There's a gaggle of players battling for the final three receiver spots, leading with the underachieving Kevin Ogletree, but the Cowboys drafted Danny Coale from Virginia Tech in the fifth round as a possible slot receiver. Signing a veteran could help bolster this unit, considering how Bryant and Austin battled injuries last season. Patrick Crayton comes to mind, but it's doubtful the Cowboys would go back to the talkative receiver, especially after he asked for a trade when Bryant was drafted. Jerheme Urban is another possibility but it's not known if the Cowboys like his skill set.

Running back: This position, like wide receiver, is a strength for the Cowboys. DeMarco Murray and Felix Jones are a solid 1-2 punch. Phillip Tanner can play special teams and get some snaps as a No. 3 runner, but all three running backs were injured at some point last year. Murray didn't finish the season, needing surgery to repair a broken ankle. You can't have four running backs on the roster, yet signing someone such as Patrick Cobbs (North Texas) to mainly play special teams and become an insurance policy might be a good move. Ronnie Brown, a former first-round pick, while he might not play special teams, is someone to look at too.

Punter: Chris Jones is the favorite to win the job, but Mat McBriar, who is a free agent, is recovering from leg surgery. There's some uncertainty regarding McBriar's availability for teams, because some might want him to prove he can punt after recovering from surgery. McBriar should be ready to kick in training camp. Daniel Sepulveda (Baylor) punted with Pittsburgh last season and in eight games had a 40.6 net average. If Jones struggles and McBriar is unavailable due to health or signing with another team, getting a veteran such as Sepulveda might be worthwhile.

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