I think it’s time for us to have a discussion about the Dallas Cowboys and their offensive line. Last year, our O-line was touted as the best in the league. My have things changed. Let’s try to get a grasp at what’s happening this season.
In the 2016 season, the Dallas Cowboys were one of the best teams at controlling the clock and moving down the field. With proper blocking from the O-line, Ezekiel Elliott was able to muscle through and get the first downs we needed. It should also be mentioned that because we controlled the clock so well, our defense wasn’t on the field as much as they have been this season (which is a good thing).
The Cowboys went into the draft knowing that two of their starting offensive linesmen were not going to be back. Right Tackle Doug Free retired in March and Offensive Guard Ronald Leary went as a free agent to the Denver Broncos. Perhaps our first draft pick should have gone to a linesman instead of Taco Charlton? Replacing Free was three year veteran La’el Collins and Chaz Green was the replacement for Leary. Currently, Green is on the injured reserve and Jonathan Cooper has been filling in. Injuries are most definitely hurting us but I think the problem doesn’t just lie there.
Dallas is missing former offensive line coach Bill Callahan who went to the Washington Redskins in 2015. He left after a his play calling duties were stripped and the Cowboys didn’t allow him to interview for an offensive coordinator job elsewhere. Speak with former players who’ve been coached by him, and they’ll tell you that he knew how to design the run game. His replacement was Frank Pollack who was assistant coach under Callahan. To me, it seems that Pollack has been “getting by” with the O-line that Callahan built up, and now we’re starting to see the effects of his departure.
So what’s next? Where do we go from here? The trade deadline ends on October 31st and we have a couple of games before then. I’m just going to throw this out there but what if we trade someone of caliber for a team’s best O-line player? Dez Bryant maybe? It’s just a thought.
Hopefully, with continued practice, continuity of play, and injuries healing, the O-line will improve throughout the season. We need to feed Zeke the ball, protect our quarterback, and get back to being the Cowboys we all know and love.
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