- Dan Graziano, ESPN Staff Writer
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Your Friday links are presented in order of the dollar value of the franchises, as determined by Forbes Magazine's annual survey last September.
Dallas Cowboys ($1.85 billion)
Tony Romo is effectively signed through 2013, and Todd Archer thinks the prudent move for the Cowboys would be to get Romo signed to an extension now. Todd Archer thinks it would help them with short-term salary cap room and that such a move would carry little risk, since Romo doesn't have as much wear on him as a lot of quarterbacks his age. Don't be surprised if it happens. There are Cowboys fans who wonder if Romo is the long-term answer at quarterback, but the people who run the Cowboys don't have the same doubts.
We'll stick with Todd, who produced quite a bit Thursday. He was impressed with the way rookie running back Lance Dunbar looked in practice, and has some more observations from the final day of minicamp.
Washington Redskins ($1.55 billion)
Here's Jason Reid's column on the turnover in the Redskins' secondary and what it says about the length of careers in the NFL. As I said the other day, my sense after spending time there this week is that Brandon Meriweather and Madieu Williams currently sit atop the depth chart at safety, and the deal with Tanard Jackson is that the coaches need to be convinced before committing to him. He can play (and behave) his way into a starting role, but right now he's behind Williams at free safety.
Some of you have asked for information about the running backs, but the fact is that six of them, including fullback Darrel Young, were held out of the final minicamp practice Wednesday for injury reasons. So there's not a lot right now on which to base any evaluation. If everyone's healthy, Tim Hightower is the starter. If he can't get healthy, they may look for another veteran to add to the training camp mix. Situation in flux.
New York Giants ($1.3 billion)
Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell discussed many aspects of his defense, including the suddenly deep linebacker position and the likelihood that the Giants will use three linebackers more often than they have in recent years. Still a question at middle linebacker, for me, but it looks as though Chase Blackburn's contribution to the Super Bowl run has earned him the spot for now.
In that same link, Fewell says the Giants have a plan in case cornerback Terrell Thomas is fully recovered from his knee injury and another in case he's not. Thomas remains convinced he'll be full-go come training camp, but it's clear the Giants (who have dealt in recent years with a slew of ACL injuries and recurrences thereof) want to be very careful with him.
Philadelphia Eagles ($1.16 billion)
Former Indianapolis offensive line coach Howard Mudd is in his second year as the Eagles' offensive line coach. Jason Kelce, the sixth-round pick who started every game at center for the Eagles last year as a rookie, is Mudd's pet project. Mudd recommended Kelce reach out to former Colts center Jeff Saturday for advice this offseason, and Kelce was happy to do so.
Rookie Fletcher Cox made it back in time for the final minicamp workout after heading home to Mississippi earlier in the week to deal with a family tragedy. He was happy to be back to work, though he was clearly affected by the loss of his cousin and close friend.