The last few days have been tough for a host of NFL defensive linemen as several clubs released their veteran defenders to free up salary-cap space before the start of free agency on March 10.
The Cowboys, of course, are no strangers to free agent defensive linemen, though over the past few years this has been more out of need than desire, as they frequently went the free agent route to shore up their defensive line. A large part of last year's defensive line rotation was brought in/back via free agency: DT Henry Melton, DT Terrell McClain, DE Jeremy Mincey, DE George Selvie, DT Nick Hayden, DE Jack Crawford, DE Kenneth Boatright, and DE Amobi Okoye were all brought in through some form of free agency.
It stands to reason that the Cowboys will be active in free agency again for their defensive line, be it for potential starters or backup players. And some of the recently cut defensive linemen could provide interesting options for the Cowboys.
|Name||POS||Last Team||Age||Entered League|
|Jonathan Massaquoi||DE||Falcons||26||2012: 5th round (164th overall)|
|Kendall Langford||DT||Rams||29||2008: 3rd round (66th overall)|
|Barry Cofield||DT||Redskins||30||2006: 4th round (124th overall)|
|Stephen Bowen||DT||Redskins||30||2006: UDFA|
|Mathias Kiwanuka||DE||Giants||31||2006: 1st round (32nd overall)|
|Chris Canty||DE||Ravens||32||2005: 4th round (132nd overall)|
|Darnell Dockett||DT||Cardinals||33||2004: 3rd round (64th overall)|
Some of the veterans on this list are likely nearing the end of their playing careers, but could probably be had on team-friendly deals. If the Cowboys are looking to add some veteran depth to their rotation for a year or maybe two, there may be some value to be found on this list.
Once free agency starts, players like Kevin Williams, C.J. Mosley, Nick Fairley, Terrance Knighton, B.J. Raji, Jared Odrick, Kenrick Ellis, Ahtyba Rubin, and Tyson Alualu will also hit the market and add even more options for the Cowboys, albeit significantly more expensive options.
Free agency won't start for another 10 days, but that doesn't mean the Cowboys have to wait if they want to sign any of the players above from the list above, as players who have been cut can be signed by other teams at any time. And there will probably be more defensive linemen released over the next few days.
And while the grass is always greener on the other side, the Cowboys also have four of their own free agent defensive linemen they can bring back. Anthony Spencer, Henry Melton, George Selvie, and Nick Hayden all are all set to hit free agency, and they have one advantage none of the other free agents have: they are known commodities for the Cowboys.