With Travis Frederick’s sudden retirement, the Dallas Cowboys stand to lose the centerpiece (so to speak) of their team’s biggest strength. But they were prepared for this…
For years, Travis Frederick has anchored the center spot for the Dallas Cowboys. The once controversial pick of the 2013 draft, Frederick quickly established himself as the best center in the NFL, earning All-Pro honors in 2016 and holding a standing reservation at the annual Pro Bowl.
So it’s only natural the Dallas Cowboys panic a little when faced with the reality he’s no longer going to be leading their offensive line into battle anymore. The Dallas Cowboys built their identity on a dominant O-line, if they don’t have that, all other aspects of the offense might change.
That’s why rumblings of our big dumb team ( I can say that because they’re mine) drafting a center high in the draft aren’t all that surprising. Like a middle aged man suffering from hair loss, they’re worried about losing their identity. What do they do? They go out and buy the first ugly toupee they can find.
I’m not saying Cesar Ruiz is an ugly toupee (OK, I am, and for that, I apologize), because Ruiz projects as a fine center in the NFL. I’m saying this panic-driven knee-jerk reaction is unnecessary. They prepared for this.
The Dallas Cowboys have been investing in their offensive line depth for years, just in case this very situation goes down. In fact, they have arguably the deepest bench of O-line talent in the league. If anyone can survive this situation smoothly, it’s the Dallas Cowboys.
Last year, Dallas saw one of the top interior linemen on their board drop to them in the third round. They didn’t need to pick an offensive lineman but he was too good to pass up. So they drafted Connor McGovern (who used to play center and guard at Penn State, no less).
In case the unproven 22-year-old McGovern doesn’t work out, Dallas locked up Joe Looney for this season. Looney, a 16-game starter at center in 2018, is a proven commodity. He wasn’t a Pro Bowler or anything but he was a decent Band-Aid.
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Even if those two players don’t work out, Dallas has Connor Williams (the expected starting guard) who could try his hand at center. If he’s the best option there, McGovern or Looney could battle for his vacated guard spot. Teams should be so lucky to have this type of pedigreed depth on their roster. The Dallas Cowboys are going to get worse at center this season. You can’t replace an All-Pro with pedestrians and expect otherwise (see also, the cornerback position). But unlike cornerback, the Dallas Cowboys were prepared for this.
Using a top pick on a center would be like having the best offensive line in the league and then using a top-5 pick on a running back. It’s a ridiculous allocation of resource at a relatively lower value position that’s sure to have diminishing returns. What kind of team would be foolish enough to do that? Oh yeah, us (again, I’m allowed to say this because they’re my big dumb team).
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Buckle up Dallas Cowboys fans, this may be a difficult draft to digest. Let’s pray these are all smokescreens and the Dallas Cowboys are going to pleasantly surprise us all.
- Published on 04/14/2020 at 12:30 PM
- Last updated at 04/14/2020 at 13:37 PM