It's happening all over the roster for a change. After a steady succession of losing key players on critical units and watching the trickle-down effect reveal their (then) inadequate depth, the Cowboys are enjoying an immense boost in base talent by replacing a guy at the top of the pyramid. This is a rare feat and it's to be acknowledged. To wit:
Trickle Down Effect - The Bad
Ron Leary left via free agency which led to a lesser product at LG (Collins/Cooper) which led to Doug Free's retirement which led to a lesser product at RT (Collins) albeit with nice upside. However then Tyron Smith gets injured and this forces Chaz Green into the starting rotation and we all remember how (badly) that turned out. All of this can be traced back to losing Ron Leary in free agency and not being able to replace him with commensurate talent. The Trickle Down Effect was brutal for the Cowboys.
Trickle Down Effect - The Good
Connor Williams slides into the left guard position which allows Collins to continue to develop at RT. This also pushes recently signed OT Cameron Fleming, who started for the Patriots last season, into a non-starting role but a very nice upgrade to swing tackle and allows fellow free agent Marcus Martin to back up the inside positions along with Joe Looney. Dallas hasn't been this deep along the line in a very, very long time. Yes, Chaz Green is still on the roster. Why do you ask? The hot take here is this time the Trickle Down Effect is very, very good for the Cowboys.
It's happening all over. The negative trickle-down caused by not being able to successfully replace Rolando McClain, gone (chants .. LVE .. LVE .. LVE!!!). The negative trickle-down of not being able to replace DeMarcus Ware, gone. All over the roster solid depth is evident. Depth like this team hasn't seen in a long time. Sure, injuries could still kill a season, there is always that risk. Yet for the first time in a long time, this team looks like it can handle some hits to its starters on EVERY unit. Think about that, yes, even at QB.
That's on the front office. That's on Will McClay. That's on Stephen Jones. That's on Jerry Jones. Props has to be given.
The flip, of course, is the coaching staff has been getting a pass by the league for years as it's been acknowledged they have been working with an inferior talent base. Not anymore. The last time this coaching staff had a solid talent base of starters (though little depth) they did pretty well. That was then. What have you done for me lately coach?
What say you Sports Nation?
Another Left Coast Sports Post: on Twitter - Steven Van Over