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2021 Offseason: Did Cowboys Get Better or Worse at Defensive Tackle?

The had the second-worst run in the NFL in 2020. No surprise; big changes came in the middle of the this . Based on these moves, does it appear that Dallas got better or worse or defensive for 2021?

In a season full of disappointments, one of the big ones was that we never got to see in a Cowboys uniform. One of the best DTs in football for the last decade, McCoy signed with Dallas last year but was lost almost immediately with a major .

Despite talk that McCoy and the Cowboys had mutual interest in running it back in 2021, eventually Dallas moved on to other options. Gerald remains a currently and there's no indication that the two parties are still in talks.

Speaking of veteran DTs, Dallas decided to part ways with shortly following the draft. Woods has been a reliable and versatile player the last few years but was being asked to do too much at times. The Cowboys clearly felt they needed an upgrade and decided to pocket a couple million in cap savings instead of bringing Antwaun back.

The Cowboys' strategy to get better at is twofold. They're banking on young talent like and to help improve the position. As 2nd and 3rd-round picks in recent drafts, these two are naturally expected to become contributors and have flashed that potential at times.

2021 Offseason Movement at DT

But while there's still hope in Hill and Gallimore, Dallas also brought in some new veteran options in Brent Urban and Carlos Watkins. The team appears especially intrigued in Urban, one of the league's top-graded run stoppers last year, after giving him a fully-guaranteed contract for 2021.

Urban and Watkins certainly don't have Gerald McCoy's name recognition or past accolades, but there was concern even before his injury what McCoy would contribute at age 32. We never got to see him in action, but that further shows how these veteran additions could provide fast improvement from 2020.

The Cowboys didn't stop there. With 3rd and 6th-round picks in the they added and Quinton Bohanna. These rookies will join Hill and Gallimore to heat up the competition and hopefully give Dallas a strong young core of DT talent.

Odighizuwa is another player in the 3-tech mold like Trysten and Neville. With a new defensive staff, it will be interesting to see how they value the previous regime's talents versus their own handpicked 3rd-rounder. The progress of these young talents will be one of the more intriguing storylines of camp and .

Even as a 6th-round pick, Bohanna could be a real factor as a true run-stuffer. Dallas has tried to use different players in that role through the years who didn't really fit the bill. Last season, adding proved to be a huge bust as his conditioning and motivation were called into question and eventually led to his midseason .

There's definitely a mentality of “it couldn't be worse” when looking at the defensive tackles in 2020. From to scheme changes to young players still learning, this was one of the real weak points on last year's team.

Between the new and rookie additions, plus the hoped-for growth from Hill and Gallimore, it's hard to see this group not being better from 2020. If nothing else, the upgrade of over as should help the players be more effective.

Final Verdict: BETTER

Jess Haynie
Jess Haynie
Cowboys fan since 1992, blogger since 2011. Bringing you the objectivity of an outside perspective with the passion of a die-hard fan. I love to talk to my readers, so please comment on any article and I'll be sure to respond!

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Jeff Tuggle

Poe wasn’t a bust. He was already horrible and everyone outside of the Cowboy’s front office knew it. He and McCoy headed up the terrible defense in Carolina the year before and had faded for several years. Though they were great talents at one time they offered very little when the Cowboys signed them. Just another case of Jerry thinking big names can resurrect themselves just by putting a star on their helmet. Dallas will be better at DT this year. Likely, significantly better. And they won’t He “slightly worse” at end. They will be better as A. Smith burned out last year and other pickups I believe will help but the big factor is a full year of Gregoru.


We’ll see , unless DQ gets too smart for his own good, if he tries to go to a 3-4 like they’ve been talking about


Urban was one of my favorite signings so this is a resounding BETTER. I look at it this way. We cant get much worse than last year so we have to be on the up and up. Bohanna is finally a big run stuffing DT we have needed and Gallimore can continue to grow. Osa is basically Tyrone Crawford 2.0. I would like all 4 of these guys to get playing time ahead of Hill, as I haven’t really felt wowed by Trysten Hill.


Signing Urban alone was an upgrade over the 2020 staff.


Listen this year we fixed the defensive tackles this year and our defense is way better so my opinion is we will be 12 and 5 this year or 13
And 4


We will be there this year

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