Interim head coach Jason Garrett looks like he will get the fulltime gig, so what do the Cowboys need to do to make the 2011 successful?
Hire an Offensive Coordinator
Garrett may be a great head coach given his work ethic, attention to detail and the way he commands respect. That said, he has easily been the worst offensive coordinator the last three years given the talent he has to work with.
He was the offensive coordinator when the Cowboys were 1-7 to begin the 2010 season, and although the offense improved once he became head coach, it left a lot to be desired, especially in the red zone and on crucial third downs.
No one can explain why Garrett had quarterback Tony Romo throwing it 50 times a game, but as everyone found out, establishing the run was the key to success in the last half of the season. If the Cowboys can find an offensive coordinator who establishes the run, Romo will be even more effective.
Hire a Defensive Coordinator
Marvin Lewis may become available if he is fired and isn't offered a head coaching position. If not, the Cowboys need to find someone who can maximize the tremendous talent on defense, while also hiding the weak spots.
After reading this article, does trading Miles Austin sound crazy?
Cut These Guys
Marion Barber, Roy Williams, Alan Balland possibly Orlando Scandrick need to be shown the door. Barber and Williams are owed too much money given their talent. Ball and Scandrick are just bad players.
Trade Miles Austin
That's right, trade Miles Austin. He is at the peak of his game, and the Cowboys need to get younger in a lot of areas. Skill position players are something the Cowboys have loads of, and Dez Bryant will be the No. 1 receiver next year.
Having tons of skill with no depth in other areas has cost them the past couple of years as their offensive line and secondary ages.
Austin is worth a first rounder and maybe a third or fourth rounder. Cleveland needs an elite receiver, and they select sixth.
Keep in mind, the New England Patriots' quarterback Tom Bradydoesn't need elite receivers because he has 27 seconds to throw every pass. Bryant, Ogletree and the one of the following free agent pickups is all they need.
Sign Steve Smith and Logan Mankins
Smith is still a beast, and would be the perfect compliment to Bryant. Smith runs great routes, comes back to the ball, catches the ball with his hands, and is explosive after the catch. It is a no-brainer.
Mankins earned his third Pro Bowl appearance despite missing seven games. He is a tremendous talent who probably wants to get out of New England.
Select Patrick Peterson or Prince Amukamara
These are the two best corners coming that will be in the 2011 draft, and the Cowboys can use the sixth pick they get for Austin here.
Trade Down and Get Offensive Lineman
The offensive linemen aren't that great in this year's draft, but the Cowboys need to make it a point of emphasis.
Trade the ninth pick (possibly for a mid-teens pick and a fifth) down and start building towards the future.
Find a Ball Hawking Safety or Move Terrence Newman
The Cowboys looked like they had the former safety Roy Williams back there in 2010, as they were consistently burned deep.
Newman has lost a step, but is still a viable corner. That said, if they get a stud cornerback in the draft, moving Newman to safety has to be on the radar in 2011 or 2012.
If they don't move Newman in 2011, they must find someone on the free agent market who can plug the hole.