Top Five Mini-Camp Questions

The Cowboys only full-team mini-camp gets underway Friday afternoon at Valley Ranch. Can Drew Bledsoe assume a leadership role in only his first year in Dallas? What's up with Pete Hunter? Those are just two of our top five questions headed into this weekend's mini-camp.

#1: What's Up with Pete?
The much-maligned cornerback has gone through a stormy offseason after the Cowboys signed free agent corners Anthony Henry and Aaron Glenn. Nevertheless, the writing is on the wall. The Cowboys want to try him at safety, but Hunter wants to stay at cornerback. If he (and his agent) understands the game and his future in it, he should at least give the Cowboys the option of playing him at free safety this weekend. Nothing new has been reported on his status with the team in recent weeks, but there's little doubt he'll be doing some talking this weekend as he tries to work his way back into the good graces of Bill Parcells and Jerry Jones.

#2: Will the 3-4 Work?
With the addition of Marcus Spears, Jason Ferguson, and Demarcus Ware, the Cowboys are well on their way to making a move to the 3-4 defense. At the same time, questions still remain on how Dallas will use of its veteran players like La'Roi Glover. What is his role now and how will he respond to less playing time? Glover has always been known as a team player, but a drastic shift in the Cowboys' defensive philosophy will likely test his positive attitude. Bill Parcells is comfortable with the 3-4, utilizing the formation in 13 of his 15 years as a head coach, but how comfortable will the Cowboys be?

#3: Vollers or Tucker?
Right tackle has been an issue with this team for a long time, and realistically, more questions than answers are still out there entering this weekend's mini-camp. Tucker started 13 games last season but is likely not a long-term answer, and Vollers is better suited in spot duty. Can Rob Petitti contribute here? Probably, but he may need to shed a few pounds before he can be as effective as he needs to be.

#4: Is Everyone Healthy?
Football is a contact sport, and even during the offseason, there are health concerns with the Dallas Cowboys. RG Marco Rivera had back surgery in March after a freak accident on a treadmill. WR Terry Glenn is coming of a foot sprain that limited his playing time last year. CB Pete Hunter only played three games last year after suffering a torn ACL. We know that Glenn and Hunter will be practicing this weekend...how will they respond? The Cowboys also have two draft picks who will be held out of this weekend's mini-camp in Chris Canty and Kevin Burnett. By missing this weekend's mini-camp, will these rookies have an even tougher time getting ready for the start of training camp?

#5: Bledsoe the Leader?
No one who understands the game of football will question Drew Bledsoe's natural ability as a quarterback. He has a strong arm, he generally makes good decisions on the field, and he has a proven track record of success both with the Bills and the Patriots. The one question that must be answered however, concerns his leadership. Can he lead this football team back to the playoffs? Can he be the leader in the huddle with the game on the line? Does he have the confidence of his wide receivers and running backs? These three questions will begin to be answered this weekend. The sooner Bledsoe assumes a legitimate leadership role with this team, the better.


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