On Thursday, Ian Rapoport reported that the Dallas Cowboys were in talks to potentially trade offensive tackle La’el Collins. While Collins has certainly proven himself as a lineman, the former LSU Tiger has had his fair share of injuries and off-the-field issues. Plus, his $10 million salary cap hit does not bode well for a team with such cap struggles. Given all of this, it’s no surprise that the Cowboys want to shop the market and see what they can get for Collins.
While Collins is a worthwhile tackle, teams will likely be wary of his injury history. He missed the entirety of the 2020 season with a hip injury and has only played two full seasons in his six-year career. Behavior-wise, Collins was supposed to be a first-round draft pick until his name was associated with a double homicide in Baton Rouge ahead of the 2015 NFL Draft. He was also ejected from a game against Washington and suspended multiple games for violating the league’s substance abuse policies in 2021.
Regardless, there are several NFL teams that are in desperate need of strong offensive line talent. Collins is set to make $10 million a year for the next four years. In the big picture, that’s affordable for a top-performing OT these days. If the Cowboys can get big returns, they may be saying goodbye to Collins. Let’s take a look at who needs him most.
5 NFL teams that would benefit from signing Cowboys OT La’el Collins
5. Cincinnati Bengals
You may be thinking the Bengals don’t need much help given they just made it to the Super Bowl. But if you watched that game closely, you’d see that the offensive line is one of the key reasons they lost. Quarterback Joe Burrow was sacked seven times in the Super Bowl. This trade would allow them to make huge improvements in protecting their precious QB.
At the time of writing, none of the Bengals’ offensive line starters are locked in for the 2022 season. Plus, right tackle Riley Reiff is about to become a free agent. Newly hired offensive line coach Derek Frazier would likely be excited to get a guy like Collins on his squad. The Bengals won’t get a chance to select a prospect until the 31st overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. That means relying on the draft for an immediate starter for the offensive line simply isn’t an option.
The Bengals weren’t always known for big-level signings, but in the past few years, Mike Brown has made some more Jerry Jones-like decisions. Could Collins be the next one?