The Dallas Cowboys battled through their fair share of injuries in 2015 and if they want to have any kind of success in the upcoming 2016 season, they have to avoid the injury bug.
The unfortunate thing about injuries is that they are unpredictable and they can really have a major impact on a teams performance depending on which players are the ones to go down.
The sad truth for the Cowboys in 2015 was that the injuries that the team endured was to key members and was a major reason why they finished with a 4-12 losing record.
I decided to try and identify a few of the Dallas Cowboys players that are simply irreplaceable and would be devastating to the entire team if anyone of them where to go down with an injury and miss an extended period of time.
Tony Romo obviously makes this list because we all witnessed firsthand how this team functions without him at the helm leading the offense.
The 2016 season will ultimately come down to the health of Romo and how he performs. There simply isn’t another quarterback on this team that can come in and play anywhere near as well as Romo.
Kellen Moore has been receiving some positive reviews, but he is still somewhat an unproven commodity in the NFL and has never won a game during his time in a league.
Let’s just hope that Romo’s surgically repaired collarbone can last out the entire season and that no other injury mishaps occur. The Dallas Cowboys simply can’t afford to lose their starting quarterback for any amount of time.
Smith is arguably the best left tackle in the entire NFL and does an amazing job keeping Romo’s blindside well protected. He is perhaps the second most important player on the entire Cowboys roster behind Romo.
I honestly don’t know what the coaching staff would do if Smith went down with an injury.
Would Doug Free move over to the left side? Is Chaz Green ready to fill in as a left tackle?
Whoever is asked to protect Romo’s blindside would be a huge downgrade from Tyron Smith. There is a reason he has been voted into the Pro Bowl three times already and the great thing is he is only 25 years old.
Travis Frederick might just be a little under the radar when you think about the Cowboys offensive line, but his importance to the team is not.
Tyron Smith and Zack Martin seem to receive the majority of praise, but Frederick’s contribution is on par with both Smith and Martin. That is why he is a Pro Bowler as well.
Frederick is responsible for making all the pre-snap line adjustments and identifying where the defense might attack. He is also responsible for keeping the pocket from collapsing and giving Tony Romo a clean space to step up and make a throw down the field.
Like Tyron Smith, there isn’t another player on the team that can step in and provide the same type of stability at the center position. I’m not even quite sure they have a valuable option as a backup to fill in an emergency situation.
Joe Looney was signed to hopefully be that player but there’s a reason why he was a free agent and in my honest opinion I think he is probably better as a guard than a center.
Witten is the type of player that everyone looks to for guidance and support.
The Dallas Cowboys have been extremely fortunate to find a player of Witten’s caliber and toughness. He is a surefire Hall of Famer in the future and although he is starting to slow down just a bit, he is still a player that has to be game planned for by defensive coordinators around the league.
The Cowboys offense would be drastically different without #82 in the lineup and like everybody else on this list there isn’t another tight end on the roster that could come close to having the same type of production on the field.
Witten is used in so many different ways that finding one player to fill in would be virtually impossible.
Again, we already know what happens when Dez Bryant goes down with an injury and what the offense looks like without him in the lineup or with him in the lineup at less than 100%.
There’s no denying that Bryant is one of the top receivers in the entire NFL and his presence on the field has to be accounted for wherever he lines up.
He is one of those players that can be truly labeled as a playmaker and a quarterbacks best friend when he’s on the field.
The sad thing is that the Cowboys wide receiver group is simply lost without him and there’s no one else to step up and fill in is that #1 WR.