More

    La’el Collins’ Health a Major Factor in 2021 and Beyond

    One of the ' most underrated players the last few seasons has been Offensive La'el Collins. But after missing all of 2020 with a hip issue and corrective surgery, Collins has now become a concern both for the upcoming season and as a long-term asset for the franchise.

    Collins' move to in 2017 was met with criticism at the time. His early displays of athleticism and power in run blocking from the left position had people jumping to comparisons, so naturally the Cowboys were called fools for messing with a good thing.

    Nevertheless, La'el soon emerged as one of the best right tackles in the NFL. Analysts graded him as a top-five player at his position and he was considered by many as a snub after 2019.

    Unfortunately, Collins joined the myriad of Cowboys players with issues last season. His season-long absence was arguably the third-worst injury Dallas had in 2020 after 's and 's.

    - Advertisement -

    You could even make the case that the combined impact of missing Collins all year and losing Smith for 14 games was more damaging to the Cowboys' season than Prescott's injury. Had the offensive tackles been healthy and brought solvency to the front line, Dallas likely makes the even with at .

    The Cowboys could more easily navigate the future if they had full confidence in at least one of their starting OT's health. But despite having two Pro Bowl-worthy tackles, their combined injury concern has some suggesting Dallas' spent their first-round pick on the position.

    REPORT: Tyron Smith Should Return, but Probably no La'el Collins for Week 4
    Cowboys OTs Tyron Smith & La'el Collins
    - Advertisement -

    Sadly, Tyron Smith probably isn't going to get significantly healthier in the coming years. Now 30 years old and with the mileage of 10 NFL seasons, Smith's likely to remain a high-risk asset for the duration of his career.

    This is why La'el Collins, who turns just 28 in July, emerges as major factor for the Cowboys. His recovery from this hip issue and returning as a consistent presence on the field helps to mitigate Tyron Smith's issues for few years.

    If Dallas can count on Collins then they don't have to worry so much about the depth behind him and Smith. An existing player like can provide sufficient insurance as the swing tackle as long as you feel good about at least one starter's reliability.

    Right now the Cowboys are expressing confidence in both Collins' and Smith's returns for 2021. But this time of year is always when you get the positive spin; at least five months before anyone has to to .

    Reality won't be realized until Collins is truly back on the field and resuming his duties. Then only time will tell if the hip condition is truly behind him or a source of continued frustration for the next few years.

    In either case, La'el Collins' health will have a significant impact on the Dallas Cowboys' decision making in 2021 and in future seasons.

    spot_imgspot_imgspot_img
    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!

    Latest

    Jerry Jones Speaks About Dak Prescott’s Injury

    Owner Jerry Jones was a guest on 105.3 "The...

    With Michael Gallup Back, He Can Unlock The Cowboys Passing Game

    For all the good things that came out of...

    Will Jalen Tolbert Suit Up Again This Season?

    The third-round pick out of South Alabama has been...

    Inside the Minds of QB Controversialists: What’s Behind Anti-Dak Sentiments Among Cowboys Fans?

    "Dak is our quarterback." Those should be the House...

    Newsletter

    Daily Cowboys News in Your Inbox
    Name:*
    Your email address:*
    Please enter all required fields Click to hide
    Correct invalid entries Click to hide

    Don't miss

    Jerry Jones Speaks About Dak Prescott’s Injury

    Owner Jerry Jones was a guest on 105.3 "The...

    With Michael Gallup Back, He Can Unlock The Cowboys Passing Game

    For all the good things that came out of...

    Will Jalen Tolbert Suit Up Again This Season?

    The third-round pick out of South Alabama has been...

    Inside the Minds of QB Controversialists: What’s Behind Anti-Dak Sentiments Among Cowboys Fans?

    "Dak is our quarterback." Those should be the House...

    Cowboys Take Command Over Washington – Is Something Brewing in Dallas?

    Add another W to the win column, as the...

    Will Connor McGovern get Needed Exposure in Contract Year?

    A few months ago things were not looking great for fourth-year offensive lineman Connor McGovern. The Dallas Cowboys drafted Tyler Smith with their 1st-round...

    Would Jason Peters be the Swing Tackle or a Starter for Cowboys?

    The potential free agent acquisition of Offensive Tackle Jason Peters has been the talk of the town the last few days. If the Dallas...

    Veteran OT Jason Peters Meeting w/ Cowboys Today

    Here we go again, another offensive tackle story to be told. This time it's Jason Peters from the Chicago Bears. A lot of you...

    3 COMMENTS

    3 Comments
    Oldest
    Newest Most Voted
    Inline Feedbacks
    View all comments
    VAM

    Collins has been a great player for us, no doubt. Especially with the flexibility. And to think he was an UDFA, because of a story about his ex girlfriend’s demise. Cowboys were on top of it then. Hope he comes back strong. As well as T Smith.

    gary b

    I would venture to say that the success of the upcoming season largely hinges on the health of Smith/Collins. If one or both have set backs or issues, we know the domino effect that can bring on.

    Dallas King

    In my mind being a fan since 1965. I’ve seen it all I would keep everyone on squad, maybe draft a CB left and right side and free safety. And another Center. Talk to Coop, zeke, restructuring this year’s pay. Sign Dak! Leave the group as they are. Dont trade Gallop, Wilson maybe . make Lee a linbacker coach. Would lower some cap space. Cut jones. Definitely keep Pollard , and for some stupid something happens grab ohio states QB. But if not grab some younger big guys to protect Dak,Zeke,Pollard.