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Eatman: Plenty Of Questions About O-Line; Just No Answers

Posted Nov 27, 2012

Here we are in Week 13 of the NFL season and the Cowboys still don’t have the answer to the annual question all teams ask about its offensive line:

Who are our best five guys?

Typically, that is figured out way early in the offseason or training camp. Yeah, it might change as the year goes on, but when it does, you make changes accordingly.

But here the Cowboys are, facing the Eagles for the second time in a month and they really have no concrete answers about the offensive line.

Is Tyron Smith healthy and if so, is he really going to be that left tackle that you don’t ever have to worry about?

Is Jermey Parnell good enough to replace Doug Free on the right side?

Can this team really start a fourth center this season? Four?

 Are any of these guards good enough to start for this team, or any team?

Just some random questions that shouldn’t really be asked this time of year. But yet the Cowboys have no choice. The questions are there, they just don’t have the answers.

When we do radio shows on The Lunch Break or answer any emails from fans, it seems just about every player, GM, coach, GM, position, owner, GM and owner get criticized. Wait, did I see GM? Anyways, there are a lot of people to point the finger at here.

But to me, it’s the offensive line. And if that means the GM and the coaches did a poor job of putting it together, then fine, that’s what it means.

But this team can’t run the ball … offensive line.

Tony Romo is running for his life every play …. offensive line.

The Cowboys can’t sustain any drives… offensive line.

It’s all about the offensive line. And it’s at a point in the season the Cowboys can’t just keep running it out there and hoping it gets better. We can blame the injuries and continuity all we want – and yes, it’s a factor – but at some point changes need to be made.

I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a few changes right now, this week, simply to try and find those answers to the question of the five best linemen.

Personally, I’m not sure Kevin Kowalski isn’t ready to start at center. I think I’d give him a shot, if he’s truly 100 percent healthy, which he appears to be.

I like Tyron Smith at one of the tackles, but I’m not sure right tackle isn’t his better spot. I know he’s drafted No. 9 so you have to justify him on the left side. But if the Cowboys ever get someone they can trust over there – and who knows, maybe it’s Jermey Parnell, then I think Smith could be better back on the right.

Personally, I like Mackenzy Bernadeau. He’s got his issues like everyone else but for a first-year starter who missed the summer with an injury, I think he’s going to be just fine.

It doesn’t take a genius to see there air plenty of issues on the line. But even at 5-6 and an uphill battle to get into the playoffs, it’s not too late to keep searching for answers.
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