More problems for the Dallas Cowboys and their defensive starters, as Anthony Spencer, franchise-tagged need I remind you, will be undergoing knee surgery which might cause him to miss the beginning of the season, and might force the Cowboys to dive into the free agency market, where veterans like John Abraham, Kyle Vanden Bosch and Ray Edwards are still available.
Like with most positions, the Cowboys have a talented player spotted for a lineup position, but aren’t that deep beyond that. It’s the same for their defensive end situation, just like it’s true for their defensive tackle situation which was discussed yesterday.
Spencer enjoyed the best season of his career in 2012, finishing with 11 sacks, making the Pro Bowl for the first time in his career. The Cowboys were counting on another big season from the 6-year veteran, even with the shift from 3-4 to a 4-3 defense, and yet it seems they’ll have to wait a little bit to see how well he adapts to the change.
However, the bigger problem is their lack of cover for Spencer. He’s slated to miss two to four weeks, which means he’d be back for Week 1, but recoveries don’t always go as planned, and if he’ll miss more than a month, it’s going to get problematic for the Cowboys.
Their third-round pick from the 2012 draft should have been able to step up in Spencer’s absence, but Tyrone Crawford tore his Achilles Tendon, and will miss the entire 2013 NFL season. That only leaves them with Kyle Wilber, another 2012 draft pick (fourth round) who barely played last season, as the only viable cover for Spencer.
In that case, Abraham’s name might be coming up pretty soon. Abraham can’t play much anymore, or at least that’s what teams are thinking, which has kept him out of the loop, as he insists on being paid like full-time starter. When August and September come along, he’ll probably be a lot easier to convince to sign. The same goes for Kyle Vanden Bosch, who has clearly lost more than a step (only 3.5 sacks last season for the Lions), and Ray Edwards, who is the younger option, but probably the least talented of all three players.