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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley
Jack from Portland, Oregon writes: I like your blog on the NFC East. Redskins question: As a genious reporter, have you approached someone like Joe Gibbs to find out why Dan Synder is so reliant on [Vinny] Cerrato and why he doesn't get a top-notch GM? Maybe Snyder doesn't know how or who could make the team better?
Mosley: Jack, I talked to Gibbs a couple of times last season, but we didn't hit that topic. He has a great relationship with Snyder and he wouldn't take the risk of speaking poorly of someone who's close to the owner. I certainly know that Cerrato has a lot more power in the organization now that Gibbs is gone. And based on that second round in the '08 draft, Cerrato deserves to take some heat. But he and Snyder have been friends for a long time. It would take something dramatic for Snyder to change the power structure in the club's personnel department. Snyder has fired Cerrato once -- and that was when Marty Schottenheimer walked in the building. Once Schottenheimer was fired, Cerrato was right back in his office. So don't hold your breath for any changes.
Fhova left the following note in my mailbag: How come the Eagles cannot go for Hakeem Nicks? I know the primary aim will be to replace the O-line guys and maybe get a tight end. They already have depth in o-line and Reid has never picked a tight end in the first round. As far as running back goes, the top backs did not play the wide receiver/running back role in college like Westbrook and Buckhalter, so I doubt they'll take one in the first round.
Mosley: It wouldn't surprise me if the Eagles looked to trade down in the first round. You could package the No. 21 and 28 picks and move into the second round to select an offensive tackle. Depending on how far you move down, Eben Britton out of Arizona could be there or Oklahoma's enormous Phil Loadholt. I know that Todd McShay has the Eagles picking Brandon Pettigrew out of Oklahoma State at 21 and Georgia running back Knowshon Moreno at 28. That doesn't sound like the Eagles to me. You can find a complementary back in the later rounds of this draft. And there's a much bigger need at offensive tackle. And let's not go too crazy over the depth along the offensive line. I like how Nick Cole played at guard, but I'm not ready to call him a starter. We also need to see how Shawn Andrews comes back from a tumultuous 2008.
Matt P. dropped this note by the house last night: Hey Matt, love the blog, and thanks for answering my questions in the past. That being said, do you see Dallas making a splash at someone such as Ray Lewis in the free agency market? If so, do you believe it would make a difference in team chemistry in the locker room? I know Tony Romo may not believe in this, but I am sure it has much to do with the team's lack of execution.
Mosley: I don't see the Cowboys doing much of anything in free agency. Last season they brought in aging inside linebacker Zach Thomas, but he obviously didn't have the same leadership platform that he had with the Dolphins. Lewis would be much more vocal, but right now he's simply using the Cowboys to drive up his price. He wants no part of a locker room that has been splintered by Terrell Owens and the great enabler, Jerry Jones. He'll be right back in Baltimore when all is said and done. He knows the power of leverage and that's the only reason he's mentioning other teams right now. The Cowboys have a moderate level of interest in Lewis, but it's nothing that will cause them to break the bank.