The Dallas Cowboys defense was a sight for sore eyes in 2015. Aside from losing QB Tony Romo to a broken clavicle, twice, the Cowboys defense couldn’t keep anyone out of the end zone. Is this going to change in 2016? The way thing are progressing it does not look like it. Can they recover from 3 suspensions of starting players?
Earlier this year the Cowboys got word that they were losing their top 2 pass rushers for the first four games in 2016. DE DeMarcus Lawrence and DE Randy Gregory were both suspended for 4 games for violating the substance abuse policy. Today the Cowboys learned that they will be losing embattled LB Rolando McClain for 10 games for the same reason.
This is the third time that McClain has been punished by the NFL for this reason. He was originally going to be fined 4 games checks in 2015 but had a hiccup that then cost him 4 games in 2015. Now this. This is just the latest in a career that has seen McClain retire twice and comeback.
What are Jason Garrett, Rod Marinelli and the Cowboys defense supposed to do? They lack depth at these positions. McClain was doing an excellent job of filling in for the injured Sean Lee. If Lee goes down again who do the Cowboys have?
The Cowboys defense is looking to be the Achilles heel again in 2016. Without a significant pass rush the less than stellar secondary of the Cowboys gets hurt even more. Their best player on the back end, DB Orlando Scandrick, is coming off of a season ending knee injury. Can he return to form? Will he even be ready to start the season?
Dallas has all these question on defense and yet they are looked upon as the favorites for the NFC East in 2016. I think the McClain suspension is going to be a bigger thorn in the side than people think. It just weakens an already weak defense. 3 suspensions is tough for the best defense, let alone an already weak defense. Look for the Dallas defense to once again struggle in 2016 unless their younger players can play an impact role.