Thursday, April 17, 2014
Reviewing Cowboys' free agency: 2012
By Calvin Watkins
With free agency entering the final stages, we'll review the Cowboys' past five free-agency classes.
We'll continue with 2012:
Players signed: Mackenzy Bernadeau, Brandon Carr, Dan Connor, Nate Livings, Kyle Orton and Lawrence Vickers.
Starts earned: 62
Analysis: The Cowboys needed to upgrade the talent level along the offensive line and secondary. Bernadeau and Livings were signed to become starters and each started every game. Carr signed a big money deal -- five years, $50.1 million -- to become a starter alongside Morris Claiborne. Orton was the quality backup needed for Tony Romo at quarterback and Vickers and Connor were quality veterans who started a combined 14 games. Carr proved to be versatile as he played some free safety at times. When the season ended, Carr had a team-leading three interceptions and 11 pass breakups. He finished the last four weeks of the season with five pass breakups. The Cowboys’ run game mustered just 3.6 yards per carry with a variety of running backs due to injuries. Vickers was a solid pickup for the Cowboys, and when healthy, DeMarco Murray averaged 4.1 yards per carry and did score four rushing touchdowns. There were some questions about the health of Bernadeau because he spent the offseason recovering from health issues before the start of the season. He almost lost his starting gig to Derrick Dockery, but as the season progressed Bernadeau got better.