One of the more pressing needs for the Cowboys is finding a run-stuffing defensive tackle for the trenches. With this team, typically they don’t value the 1-tech at a high priority but maybe they should start. Finding that guy is much more difficult than it seems as the Cowboys have struck out twice in free agency.
[In this series, come along as we peruse the long list of free agents and focus on players that could be of interest for the Cowboys. Some of these players may, of course, price themselves out of range. However, any time you feel like your team is close like Dallas most definitely does, why not be a little aggressive in the acquisitions department?]
DT, Bennie Logan, 6’2, 315 lbs, Kansas City Chiefs
2017 stats: 15 games played, 12 starts, 52 tackles, 1.5 sacks
Logan was recruited by Les Miles and played at LSU from 2009 to 2012, redshirting his first year. In 2010, Logan played in five games but by 2011 he was the starting defensive tackle, playing in 14 games, recording 57 tackles, 6.5 for loss, and three sacks. His final year, Logan had 45 tackles, 5.5 for loss, and two sacks. His best performance was in the Chick-fil-A Bowl where he had nine solo tackles and was named All-American by Pro Football Weekly.
Entering the 2013 NFL Draft, Logan was a favorite of Draft Show’s Bryan Broaddus and he was on the Cowboys’ draft board in the third round. That’s exactly where he was taken at 67th overall to the Philadelphia Eagles. In his rookie season, Logan played all 16 games and became the full-time starter by week eight. He finished his rookie year with 27 tackles, two sacks, a fumble recovery, and a blocked kick.
Over the next three seasons, Logan was an effective run defender tallying 43 starts, 136 tackles, 3.5 sacks, and three forced fumbles. Unfortunately, Logan suffered a knee injury toward the end of the 2015 season and it forced him to miss three starts to begin 2016. Following the 2016 season, Logan signed a one-year, $8 million deal with the Chiefs. He started 12 of 15 games in 2017, recording 52 tackles, 1.5 sacks, and a batted pass.
What’s impressive about Logan is not always in the stat sheet as his game is all about leverage at the point of attack. He has athleticism for his stout build with quickness off the snap and ability to reach through blockers to get the ball carrier. It’s really hard to move Logan off the line and he does a great job at taking on double-teams to free up fellow linemen. Logan plays with a good combination of quickness and power to slow the forward motion of the offense. He’s a smart player, hard worker, and strong tackler.
The Cowboys do not seem sold on keeping David Irving and their plans for Maliek Collins is to try and get him back to the 3-tech position where he played well in his rookie season. In 2017, the original plan was to have Stephen Paea at the nose but he retired with a knee condition. In order to get Logan in the fold, the Cowboys would have to value the position much higher than they have in the past. There are also some quality nose tackles available in the draft as well.
The Cowboys have a lot of defensive linemen with versatility to move from end to tackle but there is no shame in grabbing a guy that just does one thing very well. Logan is that guy as he offers up value as a run-stuffer that allows other guys to make the big play.