When the Cowboys nabbed free agent La’el Collins in the spring, a lot of folks penciled him as a starter on what most believe is already the best offensive line in the NFL. Those same people apparently forgot about Ronald Leary.
A fixture at left guard in 2014 when the line opened holes for NFL rushing champ DeMarco Murray, Leary has done nothing in this training camp to relinquish his starting job. As impressive as Collins has been, he has to clearly be better than the incumbent.
And, so far, that just hasn’t happened. It remains, according to head coach Jason Garrett, an “open competition” and Collins will get his chances to shine beginning in Thursday’s pre-season opener against the Chargers. But for now Leary clearly remains the starter.
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Leary, who has started 31 games since 2013, has taken every snap with the first unit on the left side between Tyron Smith and Travis Frederick, and barring an injury it appears he’ll retain his job. It’s an abundance of riches for the Cowboys, as no doubt the talented Collins could start for more than half of the teams in the league.
Leary was admittedly bothered by the assumptions upon Collins’ arrival. To his credit, he’s used it as motivation to keep what he believes is rightly his.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.