Analysis: Cowboys add interior line depth

March, 14, 2012
3/14/12
2:46
PM ET
He's not Carl Nicks. He's not Evan Mathis. He's not Chris Myers.

But the Cowboys added a young offensive lineman, Carolina's Mackenzy Bernadeau, who helps the overall depth.

At the Senior Bowl, Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones expressed concern with how the team evaluated its interior of the line.

The Cowboys went with younger players -- Kevin Kowalski, David Arkin, Phil Costa, and Bill Nagy -- in 2011. None really performed well and Nagy, despite earning a starting job, was lost for the season after four games with a broken ankle. Costa won the starting job after a battle with Kowalski but struggled at times. He might even be undersized for the starting center spot. Kowalski did make strides during the season and should compete again for a starting gig with Costa.

The Cowboys also went with veterans Montrae Holland and Derrick Dockery. Kyle Kosier was the starting right guard and played well in 2011 but you have to wonder how much longer can he play. He injured his knee in the regular-season finale and if the Cowboys had made the playoffs, he would have been out.

Holland and Dockery battled injuries themselves. In fact, Holland was a projected starter coming into training camp but weight problems forced the Cowboys to released him. He was brought back after losing weight.

Which now brings us to Bernadeau, who played in 15 games last season, earning just one start, against Atlanta on Dec. 11.

A 2008 seventh-round pick from Bentley College, Bernadeau has started 20 games in his career.

He's considered a backup but is good enough to challenge for a potential starting spot at left guard.

There's nothing wrong with the Cowboys not signing a high-priced offensive linemen during free agency.

What the Bernadeau signing means is the Cowboys will most likely draft a guard or center in the first or second round. Jason Garrett likes to talk about creating competition and he's doing that today by adding Bernadeau, a younger but experienced interior lineman to a team that has a weakness in that area.
Calvin Watkins joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He's covered the Cowboys since 2006 and also has covered colleges, boxing and high school sports.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?