The Dallas Cowboys offensive line is getting plenty of respect around the league, despite what Jason Peters has to say. They are generally recognized as the best group around, or at minimum one of the top three. They have become one of the identifying aspects of the Cowboys, something that is talked about as much as Tony Romo, Dez Bryant or a defense that is under the microscope. This year, they will be tested.
In 2015 the Cowboys play the NFC South and the AFC East. Among the NFC South teams, only the Panthers appear to have an imposing front four on defense. The Saints have a pair of good pass rushers, but Junior Gallette could end up on the wrong side of the league's suspension list. The Bucs do have Gerald McCoy. Also, let's not forget the Cowboys have the Seahawks on their schedule, always a tough defense. But...
The AFC East has a host of good defensive lines. This topic was highlighted by Todd Archer in a recent mailbag.
@toddarcher: The Cowboys' offensive line will be tested. The Miami Dolphins added Ndamukong Suh to a strong line that included Cameron Wake. The Buffalo Bills had a good defense without Rex Ryan. The New York Jets have plenty of talent up front. I'm never going to underestimate the New England Patriots even if they don't have Vince Wilfork to lead that line group. Last season the Cowboys went 4-0 against the AFC South, which played a big part in their 12-4 finish. Will they go undefeated against the AFC East? I wouldn't bank on it. We have called the Cowboys' line the best in the NFL. They certainly will have to prove it, and going against the AFC East will be a pretty decent gauntlet.
Indeed, a look at the lines for the AFC East shows the Cowboys offensive line will have some very big tests this year. (Starting lineups via Ourlads.com)
Bills - Mario Williams, Marcell Dareus, Kyle Williams, Jerry Hughes
Dolphins- Cameron Wake, Earl Mitchell, Ndamukong Suh, Olivier Vernon
Patriots - Rob Ninkovich, Alan Branch, Sealver Siliga, Chandler Jones
Jets - Muhammad Wilkerson, Damon Harrison, Sheldon Richardson (Rookie Leonard Williams)
The Bills and the Jets boasts defensive lines about as good as any in the NFL. The Patriots have a couple of very good ends and the Dolphins add Ndamukong Suh to Cameron Wake.
So what say you BTB, how will the Cowboys offensive line do against that test in 2015?