With the draft wrapped up and the offseason heating up, the Dallas Cowboys are starting to answer some questions about holes in their roster.
Sophomore quarterback Dak Prescott saw fantastic success in 2016. Although there’s no question as to how talented Prescott is, having the best offensive line in football gave him a massive advantage in his rookie season. But with the announcement of RT Doug Free’s retirement in 2017, there have been questions as to if making changes to the line could effect the overall success of The Great Wall of Dallas.
After the NFL calendar began on March 9, the Cowboys made their first move in solving the problem of Free’s absence by signing Jonathan Cooper to a 1-year $2 Million contract which included a $500,000 signing bonus. Signing Cooper was just a precursor to the Cowboys moving La’el Collins to RT.
La'el Collins has been working at RT, not LG, during offseason program. Collins said coaches told him to get ready for that spot.
— David Moore (@DavidMooreDMN) May 8, 2017
With Collins working in Free’s old spot at RT, former first round pick Jonathan Cooper would move into the left guard position. Effectively, if this roster move pans out, it makes the Cowboys offensive line comprised of all first round picks with the exception of Collins.
LT Tyron Smith: Round 1, No. 9 overall, Southern California (2011)
LG Jonathan Cooper: Round 1, No. 7 overall, North Carolina (2013)
C Travis Frederick: Round 1, No. 31 overall, Wisconsin (2013)
RG Zack Martin: Round 1, No. 16 overall, Notre Dame (2014)
RT La’el Collins: Undrafted, Louisiana State (2015)
Cooper’s move to left guard isn’t confirmed, and it’s likely coaches will have Chaz Green and rookie Byron Bell all compete for that roster spot. But given Bell’s undeveloped talent, and Green’s history of injury, expect to see Cooper starting at left guard throughout training camp and preseason.