We learned Friday that starting left guard Nate Livings’ status for the season opener was up in the air, after the veteran underwent knee surgery earlier in the week. If Livings can’t go, he’ll most likely be replaced by Ronald Leary, and Dallas is priming Leary for what would be his first career start.
This was evidenced in the Hall of Fame Game on Sunday night, when Leary played every snap of the 24-20 victory over the Dolphins--the only Cowboy to do so.
After seeing his performance, owner and general manager Jerry Jones--who has been high on the Memphis product since he was signed to the practice squad last year--said he’d be just fine with Leary stepping into the starting job in Livings’ absence.
“I don’t want to be the coach, but I’m comfortable,” Jones said, per the Dallas Morning News. “He just adds a substance. It’s not just his size, it’s his punch. He adds a base in that middle and if you put that with [rookie center Travis] Frederick in there and that really changes things up for us with what we have.”
Leary was humbled when Jones’ vote of confidence got back to him.
“That’s an honor for him to say that,” Leary said. “There have been a lot of great offensive linemen to come through here and for him to say that after one game is a good feeling. But I know I’m nowhere where I want to be.”
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