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    5 Unanswered Questions for the Dallas Cowboys Leading Up to Training Camp

    The Dallas Cowboys still have many questions that need answering. We analyze and discuss five of them ahead of training camp.

    Every NFL team heads into training camp with questions, it’s a part of the training camp plan to sort those out. However, the Dallas Cowboys have found themselves with more than a few questions that need answering.

    We analyze five pressing ones ahead of their West Coast trip to Oxnard, California.

    Unanswered Questions Ahead of Dallas Cowboys Training Camp

    The Cowboys’ offseason plan has been well-documented at this point. A decisive pivot to go with a youth movement — with hopes of signing their homegrown stars — seems to be their preferred method. However, that hasn’t quite come to fruition just yet.

    We discuss that ongoing situation and four other questions that still face America’s Team ahead of training camp kicking off next month.

    Will Any of These Deals Get Done Ahead of Time?

    By now most around the NFL are acutely aware of the ongoing contracts Dallas is trying to sort out. From Dak Prescott being on the final year of his deal with tremendous leverage, to CeeDee Lamb staying away from mandatory workouts to prove a point, the Cowboys have some serious cash that will most likely be spent soon.

    You could even argue that they should get ahead of Micah Parsons and his eventual mega-deal. However, will any of these deals get done before they break for camp?

    History suggests they will for at least two of them.

    Prescott’s leverage is astronomical at this point, coming off of a runner-up MVP season in which he led the NFL in passing touchdowns. Coupled with no-trade and no-franchise tag clauses in his contract, Prescott could be gone next season if a deal doesn’t get done.

    Dallas knows that, and while Jerry Jones likes to win deals and play the game, he knows how much better his team is with Prescott in the fold. Going down the road of unknown at the most important position in football is something the 81-year-old owner is probably not keen on doing.

    As for Lamb, this situation is far more cut and dry. The market has been set with the new Justin Jefferson deal, which pays him $35 million annually. The Cowboys either value him a hair higher than that or a hair lower.

    However, either way, the numbers are what they are, and they’ll pay him what he’s owed at some point, assumedly around the start of training camp to avoid much distraction.

    As for Parsons, all this may push him out into the next offseason. There’s no rush other than trying to get in front of a growing market value, but Dallas has Parsons under contractual control for now.

    If it wasn’t for the two other looming deals, this could be handled now, but my hunch is it gets pushed out because of other priorities.

    What’s the Plan at RB?

    Dallas’ plan seems to be to figure it out as it goes. What’s clear is that they don’t believe they have one clear-cut RB1 to lean on right now.

    Ezekiel Elliott brings familiarity and experience to the backfield, but he has a lot of tread on the tires, and the idea of him carrying the load doesn’t excite many.

    Down the line is last year’s No. 2, Rico Dowdle. Dowdle is an intriguing piece in this dynamic, as he showed flashes of quality production last year behind Tony Pollard. However, Dowdle’s never been the No. 1 guy before, and he has an injury history that may scare Dallas from making that type of commitment.

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    Yet, when it’s all said and done, it would shock no one around the building if Dowdle did see the bulk of the carries this season. It just may not be a traditional RB1 role.

    Outside the big two are names such as Deuce Vaughn, a fan favorite from last year, veteran Royce Freeman, Malik Davis, and Snoop Conner. None of these inspire RB1 confidence, but all could fill a role in an ever-evolving situation.

    Is WR3 on the Roster?

    The Cowboys hope he is, but that needs to be sorted out — quickly. In a Cowboys-perfect world, their former third-round pick of the 2022 NFL Draft, Jalen Tolbert, steps up in Year 3. But they need to see it to believe it first.

    Dallas hadn’t made many offseason moves to add outside talent this year, but they did bring Zay Jones in for a workout before he decided to sign with the Arizona Cardinals. That can be taken as them looking to add more competition in the room and could signal an unsettled feeling regarding that spot on the depth chart.

    The Cowboys may let Tolbert battle it out with KaVontae Turpin and last year’s rookie draft pick, Jalen Brooks, in camp before they decide to make an outside move. However, just who will be manning the WR3 spot in 2024 is one of the biggest question marks heading into training camp.

    What Is the Confidence Level of the Offensive Line?

    Anytime you lose two starters from the year prior at one position group, it’ll cause a bit of nerves for the following season. Add the fact that it was your starting center and a future Hall of Fame LT, now the sense of fear is heightened.

    This is where Dallas finds itself heading into training camp, as they will replace Tyron Smith with rookie first-round pick Tyler Guyton and C Tyler Biadasz with either veteran Brock Hoffman or rookie Cooper Beebe.

    Regression should be assumed, but what does an acceptable floor look like? Growing pains will happen, but what if both spots see a sizeable decrease in play? The Cowboys would be in a tremendously difficult spot if that were to happen.

    There may be hope surrounding the young guys, but the confidence level right now can’t be (and shouldn’t be) so high without citing hope as a reason.

    On the other side, if Dallas gets this right and both spots are upgraded or on an even par for a fraction of the cost, the Cowboys will once again be able to lean on the fact that they draft and develop linemen as well as anyone in the NFL.

    Which Young Player Will Step Up?

    Wherever you look on the Cowboys’ roster, you’ll find some youth injected. Up and down the roster each position group has a young guy looking to play an elevated role or is expected to make some leap.

    But with a roster so dependent on the youth doing just that, where could it realistically come from?

    The linebacker room has a second-year player who didn’t play a single regular-season snap last year with DeMarvion Overshown. However, he’s expected to be a key piece in the middle. Add in Notre Dame rookie Marist Liufau, who’s also set to figure into the rotation.

    KEEP READING: 4 Free Agents the Dallas Cowboys Should Target Before Camp

    Even in the CB room, with well-established playmakers like Trevon Diggs, DaRon Bland, and even Jourdan Lewis, there are second-year and rookie players who will need to step up for the Cowboys to take it to the next level.

    It’s something Dallas is banking on in several places. Many teams do that to various degrees, but the Cowboys are attempting to do so while taking advantage of their championship window. How successful their plan becomes will tell us everything we need to know at the end of this season.

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