#2 The Offensive Lineman
The Dallas Cowboys have a knack for finding offensive lineman to protect their stars. It simply makes sense to keep them protected but the Cowboys might have unintentionally glamorized the position.
Lineman Larry Allen could have made the Hall of Fame as a Tackle. What the Cowboys did was create the best guard of all time. If I am starting a team, you can debate other positions but I am taking Allen at guard over everyone.
Hall of Fame Tackle Rayfield “Big Cat” Wright was the mold of what modern-day offensive tackles are supposed to look like. Tall, long-limbed, and swift feet are traits that Wright naturally possessed. Wright is a member
Guard/Tackle Ralph Neely is a member of the 1960s All-Decade team but has yet to join fellow linemate, Rayfield Wright, in the Hall of Fame but is more than a worthy candidate. This four-time All-Pro and two-time Super Bowl Champion retired after Super Bowl XII.
Guard John Niland has an equally impressive resume as Neely and is one of six Cowboy lineman to have at least six Pro Bowl selections to his name. His blocking helped the Dallas Cowboys rack up an astonishing 252 rush yards in Super Bowl VI.
The modern duo of Tackle Tyron Smith and guard Zack Martin have Hall of Fame written all over them with their selection to the NFL’s 2010 All-Decade Team. Center Travis Frederick might have cut short his hall bid but does have a chance to be selected as his resume is certainly impressive enough.
Who can forget the so-called “Great Wall of Dallas”? Tackles Mark Tuinei was a stone in pass protection while Erik Williams could have had a Hall of Fame career if it wasn’t for a horrific automobile accident. Lineman Kevin Gogan had the type of size and mean-streak that is coveted in power run games.
Guard and John Madden favorite Nate Newton was the definition of a mauler while guard John Gesek was an effective lineman. Undersized center Mark Stepnoski used his technique to wall off blockers and carve out a nice career. All five of these guys were named to a Pro Bowl but
I am going to double up and go ahead and call the Dallas Cowboys “Lineman University” as no other team comes close to having a resume like this club. The Washington Redskins had a good run with their so-called “Hogs” but nothing compares to this team.