The Dallas Cowboys ‘Great Wall’ is crumbling, so how do they fix it?
The Dallas Cowboys offensive line in 2020 is a shell of what once led the way for running backs Demarco Murray and Ezekiel Elliott. This offensive line is a pieced-together version of what once was great. The biggest worry coming into the season happened immediately, the Cowboys O-Line crumbled due to injuries.
It was an excruciating sequence of injuries upfront for the Cowboys, who just got 2 games combined out of their starting offensive tackles La’el Collins and Tyron Smith this year. That was going to be hard to overcome, especially considering injuries to Smith in the past caused embarrassing results in pass protection.
Retired center Travis Frederick’s absence couldn’t even be acknowledged with all of the injuries. The finger could never be pointed towards the center position because of the struggles at tackle.
It finally seemed that some glue was sticking to the surface with the recent play of tackle Cameron Erving alongside usual starters Connor Williams and Zach Martin.
In one of the more clever strategies of 2020, Dallas moved Martin from guard to right tackle to ensure that both edges would be protected. It worked against the Minnesota Vikings, with 180 rushing yards and only one sack allowed.
Then the roof caved in again, just as America’s Team had patched together their line into a respectable unit again. On Thanksgiving against the Washington Football Team, early in the game both tackles Martin and Erving left with injuries. They will miss multiple weeks with calf and knee injuries respectively.
It seems that 2020 just is not the year for the Dallas Cowboys. You know that already. So, let’s dream of an instant solution for the offensive line in 2021. A college player who didn’t even play a single game this year.
Penei Sewell focused his efforts in 2020 towards 2021, he would solve a lot.
Oregon offensive tackle Penei Sewell is the top-rated offensive linemen in the 2021 NFL Draft according to ESPN’s top 2021 prospects. He left a lasting impression on many NFL evaluators in just two seasons as a Duck. In 2019, he won the Outland Trophy as the best lineman in the country and was a First Team All-American.
Sewell opted-out of the 2020 college football season in September after uncertainty regarding the Pac-12 season at the time.
Sewell is listed at 330 pounds with a massive 6 foot, 6-inch frame. Imagine the opportunities that Sewell would give to a Cowboys line looking for a resurgence of life in front of quarterback Dak Prescott in 2021. Elliott would appreciate more space to run next season as well, another season he will be under a microscope for his play this year.
Sewell started at left tackle at Oregon but would be expected to transition to right tackle if he would be drafted by Dallas. Just dream though, an offensive line that features Sewell and Smith, two-top 10 NFL picks at tackles. Then features Collins and Martin at guards, with the ability to shift Williams to center.
That would be a feared offensive line if healthy. That could propel the Cowboys forward in 2021. Sewell would be the go-to choice if the organization finds itself with a top-five pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Maybe losing is the answer now.