Who on this ultra-deep Dallas Cowboys defense will follow behind DeMarcus Lawrence in the sack department this season?
I think we can all agree DeMarcus Lawrence is the odds-on favorite to lead the team in sacks again this year. D-law, aka “Tank”, has carved out elite status as of late and has Pro Football Focus’ highest two-year pass-rush grade in the NFL. So barring injury, he’s a no-brainer to be No. 1 on the Cowboys.
Behind Tank, the waters get murky. It’s not that no one individually stands out as a promising pass-rusher. Quite the contrary. It’s that too many players stand out. Throw in a couple suspensions to the top pass-rushers opposite Lawrence, and you have a very unpredictable situation.
For the sake of this exercise, we’re going to hone in on a couple players most likely to follow Tank in the sack column. If it wasn’t for an indefinite suspension with an unknown return date, Randy Gregory would most certainly headline this list. But since we have no idea when, or even if, Gregory will return, we’ll leave him out of the conversation.
DE Robert Quinn
In the wake of Gregory’s suspension and Lawrence’s unsettled contract situation, Quinn was brought in to be the Dallas Cowboys’ primary RDE. But a 2-game suspension of his own put his overall impact in 2019 in doubt. Will the man that once produced 19 sacks in a single season find a way to be No. 2 on the Dallas Cowboys, even if he misses the first two games?
That’s questionable. The 29-year old edge rusher has only averaged 6 sacks per season over the last four years. While missed games and bad teams played a part in his diminished production, he’s clearly not the man he once was. And considering how deep the Dallas Cowboys rotation is at DE this season, he’ll be lucky to keep up his six per season average this year.