If Cowboys could keep just 1 UFA? 

Since it’s starting to sound more and more like the Cowboys will be quiet at the start of free agency, I’m not confident anymore they’re going to sign other players. But what about our own guys? I’m curious that if you could pick just one free agent to stay on the team, who would it be? – David Trotter / Springfield, MO

Kyle Youmans: It’s tough to just narrow down the entire free agent list down to just one name, mostly because they come from positions of need. Just to keep it simple, my answer comes from the biggest need in my opinion, stopping the run. Jonathan Hankins helped do that as the only real gap eater in the Cowboys front seven last year, and they certainly missed his presence on the defensive line when he was out for four games late in the year. If there was only one name to re-sign, he’s the one for me.

Nick Harris: When addressing what needs to be done this offseason, Jerry Jones and Stephen Jones have each said stopping the run is one the key objectives. While Johnathan Hankins’ absence was part of the issue in December of last season, having him on the field provides a substantial difference in stopping opposing running backs from breaking through the middle of the defensive line. Bringing him back could provide consistency at the position, and drafting a defensive tackle and a linebacker to help Hankins stop the run could allow everybody to see the full potential of what Hankins can bring to this defense.

Patrik Walker: I could (and have) made strong arguments for re-signing guys like Dorance Armstrong, Jourdan Lewis and Johnathan Hankins, and I stand by them vehemently. That said, if there’s only ONE that I can retain, I’m going to have to sign on for keeping Stephon Gilmore and for a variety of reasons. He effectively helped DaRon Bland save the season when Trevon Diggs suffered a torn ACL, and seeing as Diggs will need time to regain top form in returning from that injury, and Lewis could depart, and depth is already a bit of an issue at CB — I’m making sure Gilmore doesn’t leave the building.

Nick Eatman: This is like going to a restaurant that has like 8-9 great things and you’re supposed to pick one? At first, I’d say Hankins because this team already struggled against the run and the Cowboys seem to play better when he’s in there. And I can make arguments for a few guys but give me Tyron Smith. To me, I still think Tyron is a really good player when he’s healthy and maybe they figured out a way to keep him relatively healthy for most of the season. He did play 14 games last year and with him out there, you’re better inside with Tyler Smith at guard and have more depth. I think I can cover other positions but I’d keep Tyron if it was just one position.

First appeared on www.dallascowboys.com

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