5 Storylines To Follow During Dallas Cowboys’ OTAs

5 Storylines To Follow During Dallas Cowboys' OTAs

Jason Garrett
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As OTAs got underway yesterday, it was the first opportunity for the rookies and veterans to be on the field together. While the OTAs are mostly non-contact drills and a lot of seven-on-seven, there are still things fans should be looking for. So, while fans can’t learn everything about their 2014 Dallas Cowboys this week, here are five storylines you should be following.

5. Kyle Orton’s Absence

Kyle Orton
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5. Kyle Orton’s Absence

Kyle Orton
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For most of the offseason, we have been hearing rumors that Kyle Orton is contemplating retirement, and for months we have heard the Cowboys organization say that Orton will be Dallas’ backup for the 2014 season. The OTAs are not mandatory, but players are strongly encouraged to be there, and Orton absence will likely heighten the team's concern.

4. What Will Scott Linehan’s Influence Be?

Scott Linehan
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4. What Will Scott Linehan’s Influence Be?

Scott Linehan
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In March, the Cowboys brought in Scott Linehan to be the passing game coordinator and play caller. What kind of influence will Linehan have on the offense? Will he be able to find new ways to get Dez Bryant the ball the way he got Calvin Johnson the ball in Detroit? Will he get Demarco Murray involved in the passing game the way he used Reggie Bush in Detroit? How will he handle Tony Romo coming off surgery?

3. How Healthy is Tony Romo?

Tony Romo
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3. How Healthy is Tony Romo?

Tony Romo
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Tony Romo says he is feeling good and believes his back will not be an issue in 2014 or beyond. The Cowboys say Romo will take about a third of the snaps during the OTAs. Romo will get his passes in, and I am sure he will say he feels great, but Cowboys fans will still wonder if he is completely healthy. Unfortunately, we won’t know that until at least August, when he takes his first big hit.

2. Rod Marinelli’s Influence on the Defense

Rod Marinelli
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2. Rod Marinelli’s Influence on the Defense

Rod Marinelli
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Dallas’ defense was the third-worst in NFL history in 2013, and it is Rod Marinelli’s job to fix that. Marinelli had a lot of say in which free agents Dallas signed on defense and which defensive players they drafted. Jerry Jones has said that Marinelli’s greatest strength is getting the most out of every player on his team. If Dallas wants to contend in the NFC East, that is exactly what Marinelli must do.

1. Who Replaces Sean Lee?

Sean Lee
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1. Who Replaces Sean Lee?

Sean Lee
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The OTAs could not have started any worse for the Cowboys. They lost their most talented defensive player when the injury-prone Sean Lee went down with a knee injury. While nothing official has been announced, the Cowboys believe it is a torn ACL and that he will miss the entire 2014 season. If that is the case, Dallas will rely on others to fill the void left by Lee. The question is, do they have anyone talented enough to do so?


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