The Dallas Cowboys didn’t reach the Super Bowl.
It’s a statement applicable to 30 NFL teams in any given year. But it’s been true of the Cowboys for 27 seasons in a row, a stretch during which 21 of the league’s franchises have played on Super Sunday and 13 have hoisted the Lombardi Trophy at least once.
And the Cowboys aren’t any given franchise.
No other club – in any league – is known as “America’s Team.” No organization in pro football commands or demands Dallas’ level of attention. Champions or not, the Cowboys are the NFL’s flagship – the Yankees, Lakers, Duke and Alabama can only dream of a spotlight this bright.
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But the downside for owner Jerry Jones and Co. – it’s a downside, right? – is the scrutiny and handwringing that come with the annual postmortem.
So as we dig into the residuals of the vanquished 2022 Cowboys, here are seven issues they must address going into the 2023 season:
Clear cap space
Per OverTheCap, Dallas basically has nothing in its coffers for free agents this year. That’s problematic on several levels, a few of which will be explored in further detail shortly. Last March, the Cowboys restructured the contracts of QB Dak Prescott and G Zack Martin to free up about $22 million. Do they go back to Martin and/or Prescott, who’s owed $65 million combined over the next two years, and convert base salaries to signing bonuses that can be amortized into the future? Or hope other…