Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys have done it again.
Cowboys have signed La’el Collins, according to a source.
— Charean Williams (@NFLCharean) May 7, 2015
Collins, the LSU Tiger All-American tackle, was poised to be a top-15 pick in the 2015 NFL draft before his name was connected to a murder investigation as his pregnant ex-girlfriend was killed. The cops noted that Collins wasn’t a suspect, but the police in Louisiana did want to speak with him. Collins refrained from talking to the cops until after the draft, but the end result was that all 32 teams began passing on him. Collins’ agent told teams not to draft him if they were going to wait until after the third round, and subsequently he went undrafted.
Recently, a paternity test revealed that Collins was not the father of the unborn child, who unfortunately passed after Collins’ ex-girlfriend died. Another report came in stating that Collins had also passed a polygraph in relation to the murder case. Collins’ name had been cleared.
Seeing how Collins was now open to all 32 teams, we knew that open bidding season would begin. First it looked like Rex Ryan and the Bills would sign him, then Jameis Winston urged the Bucs to get him some protection, but in the end Jerry Jones did what Jerry Jones always does. He got his guy.
Since the days of Jimmy Johnson and the early 1990’s, the Cowboys set the gold standard of what a great offensive line could be. The Great Wall of Dallas made players like Mark Tuinei, Erik Williams, Mark Stepnoski, Nate Newton, John Gesek, Kevin Gogan and Larry Allen household names…
…and I hated them like crazy.
It didn’t matter if I was watching them on television, playing against them on Super Tecmo Bowl or hearing my friends at school brag about the Dallas run game. There was no argument that could be won in questioning the greatness of those Cowboys. While Aikman, Irvin and Emmitt earned the headlines, everyone knew that the run blocking and pass protection that the offensive line provided made everything else tick. They were the ultimate cheat code.
The Cowboys already boasted the best offensive line in the NFL, and with the addition of Collins they could be in line for building the second coming of the Great Wall of Dallas. The Cowboys have rebuilt their offensive line with first-round picks Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick and Zack Martin. Moreover, veteran lineman Ronald Leary and Doug Free are solid starters. Collins is just the icing on the cake.
Meanwhile, I can imagine Jerry is talking to his son Stephen while smoking a cigar and sipping scotch, congratulating himself on the great job he did as the general manager of the Cowboys. Because this is what Jerry Jones does. Good for him.
Eddie Maisonet is the founder and editor emeritus of The Sports Fan Journal. Currently, he serves as an associate editor for ESPN.com. He is an unabashed Russell Westbrook and Barry Switzer apologist, owns over 100 fitteds and snapbacks, and lives by Reggie Jackson’s famous quote, “I am the straw that stirs the drink.”