I woke up and checked headlines on my phone and read that Randy Gregory and the Cowboys are working on closing a deal. By the time I got my computer to listen to your shows, the talk is about losing Randy to Denver. Reports suggest it was over language Dallas had in their deal? – MARCO ASPAAS / VANCOUVER, WA
Nick: That's the word on the street. Something about the language of the deal to protect the Cowboys. But from what I hear, that's in just about every contract they do, including the ones that have been done this year. Personally, it looks like Randy had his heart set on going somewhere else. He's a smart guy, too. He knows that if he just takes the same exact deal the Cowboys are offering but goes to Denver, it'll look like he's disloyal to Jerry Jones, who has certainly stood behind him when NO ONE else would. I can't say I know every detail of the situation but it definitely looks suspicious and I just can't help but wonder if Gregory and his camp decided they needed a reason to leave Dallas.
David: In my experience, there are usually two sides to every story, and then the truth is somewhere in the middle. I'm reluctant to take a side without having more in the way of information, but it certainly led to quite a mess. It's the Cowboys' right to put offsetting language in their contracts, especially if it's something they've done with other players. It's also Randy's right to recognize that this might be the most leverage he ever has to secure the best deal possible for himself and his family, so he doesn't have to sign a deal he doesn't feel comfortable with. I'm not really interested in painting one side or the other as the villain. Mainly I'm just bummed it didn't work out, because Randy has been one of my favorite players to cover here these last few years. That's the downside of the business, I guess.
I understand Terence Steele has a much cheaper contract and is arguably better than La'el Collins, but it seems strange to move on from him. He would be a really powerful left guard. This team needs more strength like it had when Ron Leary was playing guard – MARCUS FORMAN / DENVER, CO
Nick: Doesn't seem like the Cowboys have any interest in trying Collins at left guard. I don't know what kind of interest Collins has at guard either, but I've never been told that. I think it comes down to health and availability. The Cowboys apparently don't Collins will get back to the kind of health that made him a really good right tackle. Sure, guard is a different spot but people seem to think you don't have to move anywhere to play guard. In this scheme, the guard must be on the move more than the tackle. I just don't think that's the best fit here – all the way around. But if it's not Collins, it has to be someone because there's about to be a big need at left guard.
David: For starters, you have to wonder if a seven-year vet who has earned a lot of money playing tackle would be willing to make that move. On top of that, I also think the Cowboys are concerned about Collins' recovery from his hip injury and how it has affected his ability. I thought he played tackle pretty well last year, but that was out on the edge, where you're not as caught up in the trash. I wonder how well he'd hold up inside at this point in his career. Or at the very least, the Cowboys have some concerns about it.