Dallas Cowboys News: Do Cowboys Have Confidence in LT Doug Free?

Jonathan Bales@thecowboystimesAnalyst IJune 23, 2010

  • The Cowboys cut five players , including kicker Connor Hughes.

We reported before that the Cowboys wouldn't give Buehler much competition , but this is a huge vote of confidence for him, as Hughes was his only semi-legitimate competitor on the roster. 

Dallas clearly wants to boost Buehler's confidence, and why not?  History has shown kickers tend to be rather fluky (although that doesn't negate the importance of a kicker's performance to his team's win total).

ESPN's Matt Mosley claims the Eagles, Giants, and Redskins all believe Alex Barron will win the left tackle job.  While we don't think that is necessarily the case, Free is certainly a question mark for Dallas. 

However, the combination of Free and Barron should be enough to produce (at least) as much as Flozell Adams did last season (and is one of the primary reasons we believe the team's "interest" in Jammal Brown was a bluff ).  We gave Adams a "C-" overall grade for his 2009 play, Free a "B- ," and Barron a "C+."

We couldn't disagree more (although in fairness, we can't totally disagree with "50 percent blocker" because we have no idea what it means).  The offense averaged 5.6 yards-per-carry with Anderson in the game last season. That is particularly impressive when you consider defenses would almost never be in a nickel package with Anderson in the game.  Thus, he was blocking the big boys.  We are confident he will be on the roster in 2010.

Everyone is interested in watching Alan Ball perform at free safety, but we think he'll be fine (as long as he isn't asked to do too much tackling ).  He will be an above-average cover guy.  More interesting to us is the play of Akwasi Owusu-Ansah , a player we believe has a ton of upside.

This will change by 2010.  Marcus Spears will likely be playing for another team , Igor Olshansky may or may not still be a starter, and Jay Ratliff could be a much, much richer man.  Still, their play is a major reason for the defense's success.  Check out our 2009 defensive line grades.

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