- Calvin Watkins, ESPN.com
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The Cowboys weekend mailbag has returned.
Let's get to it.
A: I would say both. Lee is the signal caller and the main tackler, but Carter is just as important. Lee's contract is up at the end of this season and the Cowboys will extend him long-term. Carter's deal is up after 2014 and the Cowboys will also give him a long-term contract. Here's the problem: Health. Lee and Carter have endured injuries during the early stages of their careers. While both are talented players the Cowboys have to make a hard decision regarding the long-term future of both players. Lee and Carter are healthy now, but they must get through the 2013 season injury-free to give the front office confidence they are worthy of a long-term deal.
Q: Hey what's up Calvin, Can you provide a list of the differences from last year's roster to this years? Zach Emmerick (Phoenix)
A: The difference is in the health of the team. Let's look at the offense: It's basically the same group for the exception of a new center, Travis Frederick, back up running back, Joseph Randle, and a new No. 3 or No. 4 receiver in Terrance Williams. On defense, the front seven is the same for the exception of Justin Durant, who could start at one of the outside linebacker spots. The defensive backfield is the same as well. B.W. Webb could challenge for some playing time on some passing situations during his rookie year. Injuries were a major factor into why the Cowboys struggled on defense and with some key players, Jay Ratliff, Lee and Carter, healthy, things should improve. The offense wasn't a issue, think about how Dez Bryant emerged last season and how badly the team missed DeMarco Murray in the running game. It's a good roster but inconsistency and health affected how the Cowboys played in 2012. If the Cowboys remain healthy and we see some consistent play, I expect a good season.
Q: Wouldn't it make sense for Dallas to at least inquire about Charles Woodson? The Cowboys are not very deep at safety and he would be an excellent mentor for the youngsters. It makes sense to me, but maybe I'm missing something. What is your opinion on the matter? Cody Black (Greenfield, Tenn.)
A: I like Woodson, but he's 36 and I don't want a 36-year old safety/cornerback on my football team. It's OK to go with youth and sometimes getting a veteran, no matter what position, doesn't necessarly mean you get success. Woodson is a Hall of Fame player in my view, however, he doesn't fit with the Cowboys. Barry Church, Danny McCray, Matt Johnson, J.J. Wilcox and Will Allen will compete for starting spots. Church played well until he torn his Achilles tendon and Allen is a veteran player who could start. The team has hopes that Johnson's health won't be a negative this season and McCray is a special teams guy. Wilcox is good close to the line of scrimmage, but he's a year-away from significant playing time. Woodson is a talented player, but he's on the back end of his career and the Cowboys should leave him alone.
The Cowboys weekend mailbag has returned. Let's get to it.Q: Judging by what we've seen and expect from Bruce Carter and Sean Lee, who do the Cowboys covet more, long-term wise, of the two skilled linebackers.