Heading into the offseason, many questions surrounded the Dallas Cowboys’ offensive line. Zack Martin was the sure thing as long as he wasn’t going to retire (he did not) as was Tyler Smith heading into his second year.
While Tyler Biadasz improved in 2022, some felt he was replaceable although the chances of that were pretty slim. The two big questions surrounded right tackle with Terence Steele recovering from surgery and left guard, which did not have many solid answers.
As we approached the draft many analysts, fans, and reporters felt that left guard would be addressed in the draft as free agency brought Chuma Edoga who has started all of 13 games in 4 seasons.
What happened was not expected and the Dallas Cowboys did not draft a left guard in the first three rounds of the draft. Although Asim Richards was drafted in the fourth round and could move inside. It was the undrafted free agent portion that the Dallas Cowboys finally brought in T.J. Bass out of Oregon (my write-up on Bass here).
That leaves left guard a bit of a mystery at the moment and what the front office has been saying has only muddied the waters. Steele looks to be on track in his recovery, but until games are played you don’t always know where the player actually is.
The Dallas Cowboys have a mystery on the offensive line and it starts with what the front office is saying and ends with an answer we don’t know yet.
Let’s start with what the front office is saying. Now we know you can’t always take what any front office says 100% seriously but if we are to believe them then Tyler Smith will be the starting left tackle.
That means if Steele isn’t ready to go, the front five would be Tyler Smith, (we will get to this name), Tyler Biadasz, Zack Martin, and Tyron Smith. If Steele is ready to go, then the left guard becomes a question if the front office is serious about Tyler starting there.
If in fact, Tyler is the starting left tackle that would mean Tyron would be the “best five” and would kick inside to left guard. This becomes a bit sticky as Tyron hasn’t played a full season since 2015, but the last three years are the most concerning with only 18 games played in that time.
This leads most to assume Tyron will get injured again and not be available. Sure, there is hope moving him inside will help, but we know what history has shown us.
That leaves the left guard to be either Chuma Edoga, Asim Richards, T.J. Bass, and if they move Matt Farniok to the left side. A quick look on the Cowboys’ website they have listed Tyler as left tackle and Tyron as right tackle without a starting left guard at the moment. The great mystery continues.
There are also many conversations about the line in terms of blocking in both pass protection and run blocking going on. I think regardless of which side you fall we can all agree the line is better at run blocking than it is pass blocking.
The reason I bring that up isn’t to argue if they are good or bad at pass blocking, but that Tyler Smith led the team in penalties last season and an unproven left guard could cause some issues on the left side if Tyler doesn’t take another step (not saying he won’t, but it is worth considering).
Whatever the answer ends up being, the Dallas Cowboys have a lot of questions without any really known answers along the offensive line. A new scheme can help some of these issues, but there is a lot of hope and not a lot of proof or solid answers at the moment. We have a long way before the start of the season, but the mystery may not be solved until week one.