The Dallas Cowboys are known around the NFL for their offensive line, it’s widely called the best in the business. But when Doug Free retired and Ronald Leary left in free agency, that offensive line was thrown into a little disarray. Dallas still has their three pillars, Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick and Zack Martin. Now, they need to find a couple of other pieces at right tackle and left guard.
It seems like they have decided that La’el Collins is their man at right tackle. He certainly has the pedigree to be a premium starter in the NFL, and we’ve seen flashes of brilliance in his play so far. Collins played tackle in college so his learning curve shouldn’t be that great. In general, the team and most fans seem to have confidence in Collins to handle the right tackle position.
Of greater concern is the left guard spot. The departure of Ronald Leary, and the moving of his competition La’el Collins to the outside, means the Cowboys need to look elsewhere for an answer. The one who seems to be given the initial, best shot at it is Chaz Green. The Cowboys drafted Green in the third round of the 2015 draft to play tackle. The idea was that he would one day replace Doug Free. Constant injuries have held Green back, although in a string of games he played for an injured Tyron Smith, he looked credible. But moving him inside is a new proposition.
Green’s traits coming out of college were smart player, has versatility (having played both tackle spots), and good for a zone-blocking scheme. Here was a scouting report for him coming into his draft.
Heady player with potential position versatility, but lacking an area where he truly excels. His foot quickness and movement skill will appeal to zone-scheme teams but he must improve his strength and ability in pass protection if he wants to be anything more than a backup.
You can definitely find reports that say Green has the ability to play anywhere along the line. His smarts almost always come up, and his good feet. His strength is sometimes cited as an issue, which could be a liability at guard.
For Green, it’s all about just getting a starting role.
"I'm trying to get a starting role, working at left guard and working at right tackle some," Green said. "I'm just trying to prove I can be that guy.
"It's an opportunity with the ones [first team]. I don't care where I am. I just want to put my best foot forward and show that I cannot drop off when I'm out there and better yet help the team when I'm out there."
The competition for Green appears to be another former tackle Emmett Cleary, first-round bust Jonathan Cooper and possible free agent Byron Bell. You can also throw in UDFAs Nate Theaker, Dan Skipper or Kadeem Edwards.
So BTB, what’s your take, is Chaz Green the man at left guard?