Jerry Jones and the rest of the front office must have wide smiles right now. And I'll bet the Rams front office feels the same way. Bobby Carpenter was almost undoubtedly going to be cut sometime before training camp. And the Rams wanted to unload Alex Barron and were considering cutting him as well. But just when all hope seemed lost on getting something...anything for Bobby Carpenter the Rams came along.
The Cowboys needed depth on the offensive line. Cutting Flozell Adams was a bold move but it also left them extremely thin at offensive tackle. Last year's swing tackle, Doug Free, has been promoted to starter at left tackle. So the Cowboys were scrambling to find someone capable of stepping in if an injury pops up. They tried to address the need in the draft but Dez Bryant fell in their lap and all of the top tackle prospects went off the draft board early. So they walked away from the draft without finding any immediate help.
There had been talk about the Cowboys signing a veteran or even bringing Flozell Adams back as a backup. Flozell was never coming back just for the record but it was a nice thought. But the free agent crop had been picked pretty clean and only a few scraps remained. And it isn't like the Cowboys were looking for a starter. Just a veteran at a bargain price.
When Sean Lee was drafted it became obvious that Bobby Carpenter was on his way out. I assumed that no one would give any thought to a trade with Dallas for Carpenter. If they knew he was on his way out I figured they would just wait until he was released and get him at a bargain price. I kept saying for the last two years that Bobby needed a real chance to play before they gave up on him. He got his time last year and he was ok but he showed he was never going to be much more than just ok. He seems like a nice guy who works hard but he doesn't have the skills to excel in the Cowboys defense.
But just when you thought Bobby Carpenter would be cut with nothing to show for the Cowboys 2006 first round draft pick the Rams came calling. Sure, Alex Barron is no prize. But getting anything for Bobby Carpenter after his time in Dallas feels like stealing. The Rams may feel the same way about Barron but at least Barron has logged some serious time as a starter. And Barron's true value is difficult to gauge since he has been stuck on an awful team for his entire career. Remember how everyone thought Leonard Davis was a bust in Arizona? I'm not saying Barron is going to be that good but he could definitely play the role of swing tackle.
It is a good day for the Cowboys. The offensive line suddenly seems pretty strong if you believe that Doug Free can get the job done as the starter. Now they have depth at tackle with Barron and depth at guard and center with Montrae Holland. Keep your fingers crossed that the coaches are right about Doug Free. But even if they are wrong at least there is someone on the team who can step in to play who has real experience as a starter.