The entire 2021 season ended in disappointment for the Dallas Cowboys, but it wasn’t just because of their loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the opening round of the playoffs.
While that was a tough pill to swallow, there were issues all season that continued to hold this team back. We all saw the talent was there — how else do they win 12 games — but they just couldn’t put it all together.
Here, we look a little deeper at what went wrong and identify the three biggest disappointments of the year.
The 3 biggest disappointments from the Cowboys 2021 season
3. The entire offensive line
Not too long ago, the Cowboys offensive line was one of the most dominant in the NFL. They were so elite that Darren McFadden came in and racked up over 1,000 yards in 10 starts despite being in the twilight of his career.
In 2021, however, the unit was a major letdown. The interior was pushed around often, like when Tyler Biadasz was bullied into Dak Prescott by Javon Hargrave which resulted in a defensive touchdown. They also had the majority of the team’s league-leading 127 penalties.
Then there were the issues with availability. Tyron Smith once again battled injuries and La’el Collins was suspended for five games and spent most of the remainder of the season battling with Terence Steele for playing time.
This year, they’re hopeful that rookie Tyler Smith can be an improvement over Connor Williams and Steele can take another step forward in place of Collins, who is now in Cincinnati.
If they’re going to have more success in 2022, they need to be right because this unit was a major problem a year ago.