Culture of Hoops

Dallas Cowboys Sign La’el Collins: The Rich Get Richer?

Image courtesy of Billy Bob Bain/Flickr.

Image courtesy of Billy Bob Bain/Flickr.

OK, so here’s the thing. I’m a Dallas Cowboys fan. So when the Cowboys drafted offensive tackle Chaz Green in the third round, I was a little confused. He’s a swing tackle, meaning he can play either the left or right tackle position, and the Cowboys did need some depth after Jeremy Parnell signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars in the offseason. The reason I didn’t love the pick, or was more puzzled by it was because I felt like the Cowboys had bigger needs and there were good players left on the board to fill those needs, like running back.

So imagine my surprise when the Dallas Cowboys announced that they have signed free agent, La’el Collins. For those of you not obsessed with the NFL Draft or college football, Collins was widely projected to be a first round talent before police in Louisiana requested to speak to him surrounding his relationship with Brittney Mills, who was murdered on April 24th. After the incident Collins removed himself from the draft process, his agent even insisting that Collins would refuse to sign with any team that drafted him. Since the end of the draft, teams have been meeting with Collins and he’s finally chosen a new home with the Dallas Cowboys. Collins will earn a fully guaranteed $1.7 million salary over the next three years. The decision to go with Dallas confuses me on both sides.

For Collins, Dallas has the best offensive line in the NFL. He will not be asked to start right away, but there is a chance he could beat out Doug Free for the starting job on the right side. That is of course, if he also beats out Chaz Green for that same distinction. There is a theory that sees Collins being able to move inside to guard, perhaps on the left side next to Tyron Smith – if that’s not a nightmare for defensive lines, I don’t know what is.

For the Cowboys, you have an offensive line that saw three of your five starters go to the Pro Bowl last year. Why bring in another player to muddy the water? Granted, Doug Free is getting old, but everyone else is five years into the NFL or less. Adding Collins to the mix would be like the New England Patriots signing Jameis Winston to the roster (and handing him a ball-deflater). Sure, he is a great player, but you don’t really need this guy on the roster causing other players to wonder what the plan is. Look at the effect of drafting a running back in the first round had on former St. Louis Rams running back, Zac Stacy, who asked for and was granted a trade. Also, look at T.Y. Hilton‘s situation with the Indianapolis Colts drafting a wide receiver in the first round in Phillip Dorsett.

Every other team in the league wanted this Collins, and he signs with the one team that really didn’t need him. I hope Jerry Jones knows what he’s doing.

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