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Cowboys countdown to kickoff: #70 Zack Martin

The Dallas Cowboys face the New York Giants in Week 1. And we’re counting down to it by jersey numbers.

Washington Commanders v Dallas Cowboys Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

We’re continuing our countdown to the opening game of the Dallas Cowboys 2023 regular season. Each day we’ll present a new player whose jersey number represents the countdown to opening day. Today is number 70.

OG Zack Martin
Born: 20th November 1990 (32) - Indianapolis, Indiana
College: Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Draft: 2014, Round 1, Pick 16, Dallas Cowboys.

2022 Stats:
Total Snaps: 1,364
Pass Block Snaps: 706
Run Block Snaps: 567
Sacks: 0
Pressures: 17
Penalties: 1

Zack Martin joined Notre Dame in 2009 and redshirted his first year. The next season Martin became the Fighting Irish starting left tackle. The offensive line along with Martin only gave up 17 sacks the entire season. They broke a school record dating back to 1996 when the team averaged 4.8 yards per carry on the year. In 2012, Notre Dame went on to go 12-0 on the season and make it to the BCS National Championship game where they lost to Alabama. It was unknown if Martin would return, but thankfully for the team he did and he was graced with the honor of being named team captain. By the end of the season he set a school record for career starts (52), and led the offensive line unit that allowed only eight sacks all season. During the 2013 Pinstripe Bowl he was named MVP and was the first offensive lineman since 1959 to win the award in a college bowl game.

Cowboys Review:
There are very few players, especially at offensive line, that have made as much of an impact as Martin. He was very nearly not on the team as Jerry Jones wanted quarterback Johnny Manziel, but Stephen Jones and the others prevailed. With the Cowboys rebuilding it’s offensive line in the draft in the previous years, it was Martin that got his name called by Dallas. His rookie year saw him get placed at the vacant right guard position left by Mackenzy Bernadeau, and ever since then Martin has dominated the NFL at the position. His first year in the league he was named All-Pro, the only rookie to receive the honor that year and the first Cowboys rookie to do so since 1969, he was also the first rookie offensive linemen to make an All-Pro nomination since 1947. From there Martin has played at the highest level, owning his place as arguably the best guard in the league. In the nine seasons he’s been in the NFL, Martin has been All-Pro eight time and Pro Bowl nominated eight times. He was even named to the NFL 2010 All-Decade team. While playing on the Cowboys offense, Martin has played 5,557 pass blocking snaps and in those plays has only allowed 11 sacks. What’s even more absurd is his discipline having only been called on nine penalties since 2017. Martin maybe the best and most consistent player for Dallas.

2023 Roster Projection:
This one isn’t too hard to predict, Martin is, and will be, the Cowboys starting right guard until he can no longer continue to play. There are many questions as to which player will play at what position for the Cowboys offensive line, but one place there is complete certainty is at right guard. If there’s any negative on Martin it would be his age (currently 32 years old). Not that it looks like he’s slowing down yet, but the fact he’s getting closer to the tail end of his career is a sad thought. The whispers of retirement edge ever closer.

Projected 2023 Stats:
Total Snaps: 1,250
Pass Block Snaps: 630
Run Block Snaps: 620
Pressures: 17

The Big Question:
How many more years will Zack Martin play before he retires? Put your prediction in the comments section.

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