You can already see this one coming, so go ahead and mark it down as the gospel:
The Cowboys will lose one game this new season, and maybe as many as three, because of an ongoing failure to properly address the position of kicker.
An undependable toe will kill you in the NFL. Last season alone, the final six games were decided by three points or fewer.
Maybe something changes this week in that area, but when the 53-man roster was finalized Saturday (finalized for now), the Cowboys kept two kickers.
Two kickers means you don't have one you can even semi-trust. Is David Buehler holding pictures of Jerry, or what? Regardless, Buehler is baaaaaack.
(Sorry for that kicker rant, but I couldn't help myself. By the way, the blame here is not on Jerry Jones despite that previous cheap shot about pictures. Jason Garrett did not take charge here.)
Moving on, while waiting for next Sunday night in the Meadowlands:
Some have called it "rebuilding." In disagreement, I label it "refreshing."
But when the Cowboys released their roster Saturday, it actually wasn't refreshing enough. What Garrett didn't do, or couldn't do at this time, was oversee a complete renovation on both sides of the ball.
The offensive remodeling, which we've seen coming for several weeks, was either dramatic or drastic, depending on your point of view. Whatever the definition, does anyone actually disagree with those moves?
Anyone? Take your time, I can wait for you to dig up something.
But in reality, there's nothing to yelp about, except for maybe a minor case of displeasure over center Andre Gurode being shown the door. Overall, however, all those new and young faces in the offensive line provide a blast of fresh hope.
Meanwhile, the defense remains basically intact from last season, which by either eyeball or numbers ranked as one of the worst units in franchise history.
Let's see here...
Red J is the head coach in charge of everything, but his area of expertise is offense. He pretty much gutted his own area.
Defense? Last season's flip card remains relevant.
Gone is backup defensive end Stephen Bowen, a useful player the Cowboys would love to have. But he had no choice other than to take a free agency walk once the Redskins decided to way overpay for his services.
Then Igor Olshansky got the boot on Saturday, which was no big deal.
Let's hope Rob Ryan is as good as he thinks he is. Let's hope "scheme" can overcome even lack of talent. The new defensive coordinator has a loaded plate, but Rob is obviously a guy who knows what to do with a lot on his plate.
It's just that if we're going to see Ryan making any more of an impact than Wade Phillips, it will have to begin next weekend in the Meadowlands. There was obviously nothing in the exhibition season to suggest that.
But back to the debate over "rebuilding," which, by the way, doesn't have to necessarily be considered a bad thing.
Predictions for the Cowboys' season, anyone?
OK, I'll go first.
Although without a proven third receiver, and even a young line, this is a 10-win offense. (The almighty dream team starting in Philadelphia will also start two rookies in the O-line.)
With a variety of scares on defense, starting with the secondary, this is a six-win defense, which may be generous, but I'll stick with six.
Split the difference and the Cowboys are an 8-8 team.
Factor in the schedule, which on paper is favorable, and with any luck on injuries, plus if rookie Dan Bailey shocks us at kicker, the Cowboys could win 10 games. Could.
Without breaking any news, it's not even close to a Super Bowl team. We all agree on that. But it's OK to step out there and say the Cowboys might be close to a wild-card contending team.
A schooling figures to await the O-line in the opener against the Jets, but after that there's a good chance for progress.
Within the walls of Valley Ranch, there's more concern about the defense than if the youngsters in the O-line will hold up.
On defense, the Cowboys have plenty of young defensive faces, but few are taking the step forward.
An unknown element is still attached to Mike Jenkins, Orlando Scandrick (despite his new contract) and a slew of other secondary players. The Cowboys had to scramble this summer to fill in at safety with so-so veterans because youth was not ready to serve.
A reworking of the front seven is also on hold, one reason being that Sean Lee hasn't proved he's ready, there's also a reluctance to turn loose another young linebacker, Victor Butler, and the Cowboys' second-round pick from April, Bruce Carter, is a linebacker who wasn't healthy when he was drafted, and is still not healthy. (What a strange pick that was, by the way.)
Anthony Spencer has youth, and a starting job, but he's been more bust than bonus at linebacker.
At defensive end, the Cowboys' next objective is to have the same pop with youth as just happened in the offensive line. But that's a long-range plan. Only Sean Lissemore figures into the youth equation this season.
Rebuilding? Refreshing? And why can't this team find a dependable kicker?
All good questions for the start of a new season.
Randy Galloway can be heard 3-6 p.m. weekdays on Galloway & Co. on ESPN/103.3 FM.