Todd Archer of DMN calls Jason Witten, Jay Ratliff, Anthony Spencer, Orlando Scandrick, and Mike Jenkins underpaid.
The final 2009 grades we provided those players were as follows:
Thus, we agree with Archer on everyone except Scandrick.
Don’t forget that Scandrick has received a ton of bonus money from the NFL based on playing time. We believe Scandrick will ultimately improve to the point where he can be labeled as ‘underpaid,’ perhaps as soon as this season.
While we agree that the actual starter isn’t a huge deal, there is a problem if Jones doesn’t receive the majority of carries in 2010. He has shown explosiveness and play-making ability which is far superior to that of Marion Barber and even Tashard Choice. Our “A-” overall grade for Jones is proof of that. He averaged 10.0 yards-per-carry on 22 counter runs, 3.3 yards-per-rush after contact, and was surprisingly solid in pass protection.
It is more surprising to fans than those within the league, we presume. We saw enough bad tape on Adams in 2009 to know that, should Dallas release him, he may have trouble finding work. Remember that, even with a solid grade in run blocking, we gave Adams a “C-” overall grade.
While not particularly Cowboys-related, NFP provides a breakdown of the zone blitz (below).
The Cowboys don’t run nearly as many zone blitzes as some other squads, but whenever you see nose tackle Jay Ratliff in coverage (which does happen a handful of times a season), that means coach Wade Phillips has dialed up a zone blitz.
Advanced NFL Stats has their own unique way of breaking down the play of the Cowboys’ offense.
Interestingly, they believe RB Marion Barber “cost” the Cowboys 13.5 points last season. In a future article, we will compare their statistics and methodologies with our own.