2012 NFL Free Agents: Why Dallas Cowboys Will Be This Year's Philadelphia Eagles

Timothy RappFeatured ColumnistFebruary 20, 2012

GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 04:  Jerry Jones owner of the Dallas Cowboys shakes some fans hands during pre-game against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium on December 4, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
Norm Hall/Getty Images

Let's see—what team has money to spend, a middle-of-the-road roster that could easily be a playoff team with a few upgrades and has an owner that is aggressive and perhaps crazy enough to throw his money around willy-nilly?

If you said the Dallas Cowboys and Jerry Jones, you win! Well, not football games, but some other prize I'll think of later.

I would expect the Dallas Cowboys to be huge spenders when this year's free-agency period rolls around, akin to the splash their NFC East rival, the Philadelphia Eagles, pulled off last offseason.

The team could hit free agency with nearly $20 million to spend and Jones has already said they will utilize whatever money they have to improve their team. They could use some of that to apply the franchise tag to outside linebacker Anthony Spencer, which would cost them $8.8 million.

They've said they are in no hurry to do so, and I think I know why—they might have eyes for a defensive end set to become a free agent this year, Mario Williams.

If Williams hits free agency—which he might, given that the Texans can't really afford to slap the franchise tag on him and pay him upwards of $20 million next year—he'll be the jewel of this year's free-agent class, akin to Nnamdi Asomugha last year, whom the Cowboys were thought to be in the running for.

I think Jones will have eyes for Williams and would love to pair him with DeMarcus Ware to form the NFL's scariest duo of edge rushers, and arguably one of the best pairs of edge rushers in NFL history.

Another target should Williams not pan out would be Carl Nicks from the New Orleans Saints, who is one of best guards in the NFL, if not the best, and would solidify a position of weakness in Dallas.

Then there is Brandon Carr from the Kansas City Chiefs, who may hit free agency and could provide a much-needed upgrade at the position for the squad, or even Cortland Finnegan from the Tennessee Titans.

The Cowboys have a few glaring needs, and there are players out there that can fill them. Look for the Cowboys to be busy this offseason.

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