Leighton Vander Esch, Jaylon Smith, Sean Lee, Joe Thomas, Luke Gifford, Justin March
Another position group, another first-place showing for the Cowboys. Dallas possesses the talent, veteran leadership, and upside necessary to take the top spot. Even though last season was a down year for this unit, they are still clearly the cream of the crop within the NFC East.
It all starts with Vander Esch and Smith. After a whirlwind rookie season, Vander Esch missed half of 2019 with a neck injury. Thankfully, he is not only fully recovered, but told Dallas Cowboys writer David Helman he feels as good as he ever has before.
Smith, however, made his first Pro Bowl in 2019. With 142 tackles last year, Smith led the team but it still seemed like there was room for improvement. That speaks to the amount of talent and upside that resides within him.
Of course, Sean Lee is still around. The “general” will return for his eleventh season after playing all sixteen games for the first time in his career. Behind him, Thomas and March provide veteran stability and special teams mastery, while Gifford learns to be a clone of Lee in his second season on the team.
After completing another defensive positional review, the Dallas Cowboys have now added to their already nice lead over the rest of the division. The Cowboys now have 29 points with Philadelphia next at 18 and New York at 11. Come back next week for the final two reviews to see how this ends.