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NFL Dallas Cowboys

10 Players That Will Lead the Dallas Cowboys to 2013 Playoffs

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10 Players To Lead Dallas Cowboys Back To The Playoffs

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Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys finished 8-8 for the second consecutive year and they need to get back into the playoffs fast or Jason Garrett maybe out the door and the Cowboys will be on their fourth head coach in the past decade. So if the Cowboys want to get back into the playoffs, they will need several players to step up and lead them into the “tournament” as Bill Parcells used to say.

Some the names on this list will not surprise you because it’s obvious that they need to play better in order for the Cowboys to win more consistently. If you’re thinking to yourself who these players could be, you might be able to knock off five of these players right off the top of your head. But why stop at 5 players when you can name 10 Cowboys players who will lead them into the playoffs in 2013.

These players range in importance from the extremely important, like, say the quarterback, and other might be role players who need to step up in order for the Cowboys to make a playoff run this upcoming season. Of course, we don’t know who the Cowboys will draft so any player they could make all the difference in the world but as it stands now, these are the 10 players who will lead the Cowboys into the playoffs.

Here are the 10 players who can lead the Dallas Cowboys back into the playoffs in 2013...

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10. Dwayne Harris

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Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Dwayne Harris came on near the end of the season and was a big contributor. He was a major factor in the return game and he became a factor in the passing game as well. This season will his third in the league, typically the time when receivers breakout. The Cowboys could use a third wide receiver to step up and Harris is the logical guy.

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9. Morris Claiborne

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Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Morris Claiborne needs to be as good as the advertised for the Cowboys to be better on defense. Don’t believe the hype that the Tampa 2 defense doesn’t rely on physical corners, because it simply isn’t true. Claiborne came on near the end of the season and I look for him to take a big step up.

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8. James Hanna

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Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

James Hanna might not seem like a player who can make a difference for the Cowboys offense but he could make the ofefense very explosive. He cannot be covered by a linebacker and is a mismatch over the middle. He came on near the end of the season and the Hanna/Witten should have realistic goals of being Gronk/Hernandez light because the potential is there. Imagine the Cowboys offense with 2 great tight ends, DeMarco Murray, and two great wide receivers!

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7. DeMarcus Ware

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Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

You would think that DeMarcus Ware should be higher on this list but he’s changing positions and coming off surgery so expecting too much might be asking a lot. Never the less, Ware is an integral part of the Cowboys defense and if they want dominate on defense, Ware must be a part of it.

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6. Dez Bryant

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Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

We all know how important Dez Bryant is to the Cowboys offense, he proved last year that he can be as good as any receiver in the league and now that defenses must game plan to stop him, other parts of the Cowboys’ offense will open up. He’s higher on the list of best players on the Cowboys overall but there are few players who the Cowboys need more.

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5. Tyron Smith

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Mark J Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Tyron Smith needs to live up to his lofty draft status. He was very good his rookie year and took a step back last year but he was learning a new position. Smith came on strong late in the year and should be great moving forward. He needs to anchor the Cowboys offensive line and lead the unit in 2013.

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4. Anthony Spencer

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Anthony Spencer was the best Cowboys defender last year, hands down. He made plays when the Cowboys defense needed them and he should be a great fit as a defensive end. There could be growing pains but Spencer cannot be replaced on the Cowboys defense right now.

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3. Sean Lee

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Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Sean Lee might have been the Cowboys best player through six games last season. He was on par with Patrick Willis or any other top middle linebacker in the game before he was lost for the year. Lee is a perfect fit for Monte Kiffin’s Tampa 2 defense and should thrive. He’ll make the Cowboys defense go and if he can’t stay healthy, the Cowboys will be missing a big piece of their defense.

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2. Tony Romo

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Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

It’s obvious that your quarterback needs to play well in order to win big in the NFL and it’s especially true in Dallas where they depend heavily on Romo. He needs to make better decisions with the ball but when he plays well, the Cowboys win.

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1. DeMarco Murray

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Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

I know it may seem strange but DeMarco Murray might be the Cowboys most important player. Without a running game, the Cowboys offense relies too heavily on the pass and they don’t perform well. The Cowboys are undefeated when Murray hits the magical 18 carry mark. It keeps the defense fresh and allows Jason Garrett, or whoever calls the plays, to be creative with the play calling to keep opposing defenses off balanced. Murray needs to stay healthy in order for the Cowboys offense to thrive.