With the early injuries to guards in this camp, it seems that Kevin Kowalski will get a chance to start where he left off before injuries last year. Do you guys believe that Kowalski has a good chance to win a starting job at one of the guard positions?
Rowan: I wouldn’t call it a good chance to win a starting job. If the season were to start right now, then yes, but there’s a month and a half between now and the opener against the Giants. That should be enough time for Mackenzy Bernadeau, Nate Livings and Ronald Leary to return to action, or at least for one or two of them to return. It’s possible Kowalski vaults himself into a starting spot with a strong camp, but it’s a long shot.
David: He’s definitely got a little bit of a jump, considering the two starters and the top backup can’t get any reps right now. I’d like to see how Kowalski fares in at least padded practices, if not a preseason game, before I predict a starter. But I don’t think either Bernadeau or Livings has been good enough to feel comfortable sitting out if one of the guys behind them has a strong camp.
PARK RIDGE, NJ
Our defensive line was already undersized, but with Tyrone Crawford out for the season, it now lacks great depth. Do you see this being a major concern?
Rowan: Absolutely, and now with Anthony Spencer out a few weeks, it’s an even greater concern. Throughout the offseason, few people outside the Cowboys’ organization saw the defensive line as a particularly deep area. Now without Crawford, it’s impossible to deny that the team is short in that area. The coaches will allow some of their younger players and undrafted guys to demonstrate that they have what it takes to stick around, but it wouldn’t be surprising, particularly after the first cuts, to see a veteran defensive lineman come in.
David: It’s a gigantic concern, as far as I’m concerned. The Cowboys didn’t address that need in the draft, and the guys they brought in during the offseason, like Anthony Hargrove, didn’t work out. I don’t know if it’s time to panic – I’m fairly confident Jay Ratliff and Anthony Spencer will be fine, which leaves at least a few quality reserves behind them. I think the front office is absolutely scoping out the landscape for anyone they can bring in to compete for a spot in the rotation, though.