La’el Collins: This is going to be the best offensive line in history

The Cowboys signed tackle La’el Collins as an undrafted free agent on Thursday, which usually isn’t the kind of roster move that’s followed by a press conference.

Collins isn’t the usual undrafted free agent, though. He was a potential first-round pick who went undrafted last week while he waited to speak to the Baton Rouge police about a pair of murders they said he wasn’t suspected of committing at the time and again after speaking to him on Monday. That interview jumpstarted Collins’ courtship by NFL teams and he explained why he chose the Cowboys over the other interested parties.

“I got a call from [Cowboys owner Jerry] Jones a couple nights ago and we had a long talk … First time I thought someone had seen me for who I am,” Collins said, via David Helman of the team’s website. “I had the opportunity to choose, from 32 teams, where I wanted to be. I wanted to be a Dallas Cowboy.”

Collins shrugged off the drop in salary associated with dropping out of the draft, saying that it’s more than he made in college. It probably doesn’t hurt that he joins a talented Cowboys offensive line and the rookie didn’t waste much time making a big prediction about what he thinks his addition will mean to the group.

“This is going to be the best offensive line in NFL history. Mark my words,” Collins said.

Coach Jason Garrett said that Collins can play both guard and tackle, adding that they’ll sort out their best five players in the coming months. He also called Collins mature and tough “beyond his years,” two traits that should help him as he tries to be part of that quintet in his first NFL season.

[Photo credit: @dallascowboys on Twitter]

131 responses to “La’el Collins: This is going to be the best offensive line in history

  1. Somebody should’ve drafted this dude so he couldn’t choose where he wanted to go. That was a punk move saying he wouldn’t sign unless drafted in a certain round.

  2. He just needs to be productive and injury free for 3 years and then he hits the jackpot

  3. I won’t say history, but the best in today’s NFL…I’m sorry but the Dallas Cowboy’s o-line in the early 90’s will probably be the best offensive line in history. Only to rivaled by the 80’s Hogs and that Denver Broncos O-line when they won those 2 Superbowls.

    Yeah I gave a shout-out the Redskins. I might not like them, hell, I down right hate them, but I respect that O-line they once had.

  4. Love it. You gotta respect someone who doesn’t just follow the crowd. Way to go Jerry!

  5. La’el Collins: This is going to be the best offensive line in history
    ————
    To bad you have one of the worst quarterbacks in history

  6. So….get yourself accused of something horrible…after the draft get your name cleared…and pick your team.

    NFL needs to amend the rules to allow for re-entry into the supplemental draft if there are extenuating circumstances. ESPECIALLY if the NFL told teams that it would be bad PR if someone drafted him…which I am sure they did.

  7. zinger92 says:
    May 7, 2015 5:05 PM
    If the refs keep letting them hold they will be.
    _____________________________________
    Oh dear how little you must know about football

  8. NO EFFING WAY ! How about Shell Upshaw Otto Buehler and Bob Brown 4 HOFer’s . Green Bay’s GREGG SKORONSKI JIM RINGO KRAMER AND FUZZY THURSTON ? Dallas will go back to Green Bay and lose again the playoffs in -20 below zero . Their organization can’t win there and they know it. THIS IS THE PACKERS YEAR ! BOOK IT !

  9. Congrats to the Cowboys. This is a steal, but the reason he signed is because the Cowboys guaranteed the full $1.67M no matter what. That does come with some risk.

  10. Then the two greatest offensive lines in the history of the game will both be from Dallas, modern and 90’s era.

    Jerrah picked 27th and got 3 first round picks. Damn.

  11. Great at run blocking. Just ‘very good’ in pass pro. They were “had” in a couple games last season where they gave up 4+ sacks. Not a fan, but I watched 5-6 of their games and it happened in two of them. Best line in the league right now, nowhere near “best ever.”

  12. Well God bless him.

    Can you imagine his dreams of walking out on that draft stage to receive a No. 1 jersey and the accolades that go with it. Poof! Up in smoke through no fault of his own.

    Like it or not, the Cowboys are on a roll.

  13. Well here is to hoping we take advantage of the Line by running better plays and rotating personell more effectively. We lost to GB mainly cause of our playcalling

  14. Collins, Gregory, Hardy & Bryant? Jerry must really trust that security baby sitting service he hired.

  15. Just when I thought Jerry Jones couldn’t get any dumber, you turn around and do something like this, and totally redeem yourself!

  16. Perhaps they can sign Vince Young to play behind the best offensive line ever.

    Talk about a Dream Team.

  17. Not saying this guy is guilty of anything, but nobody is ever declared a suspect in a crime until the police have a reason to declare you a suspect. If this was just a case of the police wanting to interview people who knew the victim to find out if anyone has any information, this wouldn’t have turned into such a big deal. He isn’t free and clear just yet.

  18. Man, you think people would learn. Collins just locked in the Cowboys o-line having a bad year.

  19. The euphoria will probably simmer down when the cops drag him off the field in the first quarter of the second game.

  20. “The best offensive line in NFL history” is only as good as its biggest failure. The Hogs were once touted that way – Lawrence Taylor got by them on a Monday night and ended Joe Theismann’s career.

  21. What type of man gets a face lift and signs turd after turd?

    A real desperate man, a man as desperate as Jerry Jones.

  22. Cowboys have no defense, an aging QB, pedestrian RBs, and an aging TE. Jerry is the worst in the league at managing the cap. They have a window but it’s closing fast.

  23. I HATE the cowboys…so this makes me mad. I hope he busts..probably won’t.

  24. I think football fans (even Cowboys haters) feel that it really sucked for him to not be drafted where he had been projected.

    It was a matter of the most unfortunate timing. Not just in regard to the draft, but in light of what has happened over the last year in the NFL w/ off-field issues (hardy, rice, AP).

    He might have been better off testing postive for weed a few days before the draft. I don’t think that would have hurt his stock much.

    I do hope he does well and earns that big payday whether it’s in Dallas or elsewhere.

  25. I am more stunned in the way that this happened… between Eex and Jerry I think 30 other teams are going to ask for an investigation to see if UDFA contact rules were broken. At the very least the spirit of the rules were broken if not the rules themselves. Curious how this will play out.

  26. May be the best o-line in the league, but honestly why would you sign at place you have no chance of starting, and little chance of playing. Collins will be spending all his time on the bench, muttering, dang those guys are good.

  27. The Cowboys are becoming what the old Raiders used to be: A safe harbor for players with questionable character.

  28. The rich just got richer.
    I heard interviews from both Bud Dupree and Shane Ray and they both said Collins was the best OT they faced. Ray said that Collins tossed him around the first time he faced him.

    I’m glad Collins was cleared, but it’s sucks that he lost millions because a poorly timed incident that he had no involvement in.

    The only upside was that he got to choose his team and he chose to be a part of the current best O-Line in the NFL. (I don’t think best ever, but if he plays to his potential, it very possibly could be by next year).

  29. Welcome to my Cowboys, young man!! I think you will fit in just fine 🙂 🙂

  30. The hater-ade just tastes yummier and yummier! The fact that he signed with arguably the best o-line in the NFL today is literally making heads explode!

    If Adrian Peterson somehow ends up in Dallas the internet could very well go down. For perspective a good o-line makes an average back good, a good back great and a great back a potential HOF’er. I’ll take good to great!

    The fact that it’s Dallas where you either love them (me) or hate them (most of you) this almost feels like Christmas morning when I was a kid.

    Tom Brady must be breathing a huge sigh of relief right now!

  31. When I hear this kind of stuff, I just laugh. If the Cowboys are so good why did they need a BS interference call to beat the Lions. With a 37 year old QB, a rotten defense and their best RB in Philly, they’ll be lucky to go 9-7.

  32. Hogs allowed fewer than 10 sacks the whole season during that Superbowl run in 90-91…let that soak in a minute…

  33. I thought it was reported NFL teams couldn’t sign him or even meet with him until LSU’s graduation, on May 8.

    Did I miss an update on that? How is this possible?

  34. Cowboys fans, if you haven’t been over to the team site to watch his press conference I set aside some time to do that. This young man is so much more than a football player.

    Non-Cowboys fans, I wouldn’t go there. I don’t want to be the guy who piles on.

  35. Hey, there was no reason that no one took a flyer in the 6th or 7th round on the outside chance that he was cleared, but NOBODY took the chance. SO as an UFA he can sign where he wants.

  36. Wow.. The cowboys got 3 first round talents out of this draft… Who needs a running back? Jerry Jones could average 4.5 yards a carry with this line

  37. I’m not going to hate on Collins or Dallas. In the end Collins made the best move for him. Dallas will have the best line, stacked offense and their D is a work in progress. Maybe this will end up being a blessing. He probably wanted to play for Dallas and he will get his pay day in few years. Plus he doesn’t have to play for a crap team. Dallas division doesn’t look scary either. Wish he went to Miami but he would no doubt face 2 best Dlines twice a year. I wish him well. For everyone mad at Collins, each team had chance to sign him in late rounds. He would have made around same amount and no doubt he would have played.

  38. It’s almost as if Dallas had another first round pick, and they don’t have to pay him like one for three years! Too bad this still won’t help them win the Superbowl…

  39. I take comfort in the fact that the Eagles crushed that #1 line last year, holding the nfl’s leading rusher to some peanuts at dallas… but I bet demarco is sharing my thoughts of “shiiiiiiiiiit ” right about now. The line will only get better… and romo is good, not great, but with a strong run game and time he can be lethal.

    hoping the NFc can keep up with the jones’, their time with romo is a back spasm away from over and a serviceable qb is very tough to find. Romo is their best shot, and it’s a damn good shot.

  40. In Teddy We Trust says:
    May 7, 2015 5:29 PM

    Not saying this guy is guilty of anything, but nobody is ever declared a suspect in a crime until the police have a reason to declare you a suspect. If this was just a case of the police wanting to interview people who knew the victim to find out if anyone has any information, this wouldn’t have turned into such a big deal. He isn’t free and clear just yet.
    ———————————————————-
    Your first sentence is correct, but then you went off the rails. The situation surrounding Collins turned into a big deal because of the unknown, not because any teams or even the detectives knew of specific involvement. My disagreement with your reasoning aside, your last sentence is correct.

  41. I will admit upfront as a Dolphins fan, this is Sour Grapes. However, this is a flaw with loophole potential in the NFL System. Bad teams should be given the rights to sign in Draft order. This “I wont sign if Drafted” allows players to go wherever they want and rewards certain teams. It takes away parity. I dont blame Cowboys fans for the Thumbs Downs and if the Phins won this guy I would be happy too. Honestly, this is unfair and the Bucs, Titans, Raiders etc.. should be upset. As usual Goodell and the NFL failed us fans again.

  42. skins1970 says:
    May 7, 2015 5:18 PM
    The Hogs were better then Cowboys Oline of the 90’s.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Both were great but I think the Cowboys’ OL gets the nod on this one.

  43. Not going to lie, even though I hate the Cowboys this is a great signing.

    Still think it might be harder than they expect to manage all of the head cases and borderline criminals on their roster….

  44. ninefingers9 says:
    May 7, 2015 5:04 PM

    La’el Collins: This is going to be the best offensive line in history
    ————
    To bad you have one of the worst quarterbacks in history
    ——————————————
    Back to the standard narrative.
    Only the highest rated QB in the league last year. Doesn’t matter though, does it.

  45. cowboys basically got 3 first round draft picks this year…for cheap. if hardy can play this year, that’s another terriffic asset. if they get peterson, I may consider them the best team in the NFC.

  46. Ownership make a difference in recruiting FA’s

    NFL owners and general managers both should take notice that owners can play a big part in attracting and retaining free agents. The fact that a billionaire that owns an NFL team called La’ell Collins likely played a big part in making him feel special and wanted. The fact is recruiting and retaining is a contact sport in itself.

    When an owner calls, players listen. Whether or not all owners would even want to do this is questionable. It may even offer an advantage to teams with active participating owners. Jones being somewhat unique because he is owner and GM.

    This is similar to the involvement of Stephen Ross calling Ndamakong Suh and perhaps the lack of a call from Martha or even Bill Ford Jr. to try to retain Suh.

    Football players want to be paid, yes, but perhaps just as importantly they want to be loved, appreciated and most of all need attention.

    While every free agent is not a sure thing, what seems to be sure is that when an owner takes an active interest, it can prove to be influential.

  47. They should just call them the Dallas Outlaw . Basically the have signed and drafted convicts, crooks, and men with questionable character, but hey it worked for them once, why not try to replicate the 90’s

  48. footballrealist says:
    May 7, 2015 5:07 PM
    So….get yourself accused of something horrible…after the draft get your name cleared…and pick your team.

    NFL needs to amend the rules to allow for re-entry into the supplemental draft if there are extenuating circumstances. ESPECIALLY if the NFL told teams that it would be bad PR if someone drafted him…which I am sure they did.

    _____________________________________

    Or maybe the NFL needsd to stay out of te business of declaring people guilty when the law itself has not declared any such thing. Getting questioned by police is NOT a crime and it is other teams fault for not drafting the guy. Guys like John Elway and Eli Manning have been manipulating their draft status by manipulating which teams they played for. Should they be written out of history?

  49. and they still have a aging qb with a bad back,no running back,one wideout and a head coach who is awful

  50. So next year what stops a player from making crap up so he can choose his fav team? Easy to fake some crap when a guy comes from a small town, gets local law to make crap up for him then say it was all a big mistake. I understand that isn’t what happened this time but the NFL response as it stands just opened the door

  51. Lets clear something up. Dallas didn’t get 3 first rders. Jones is a 2nd rd talent. Gregory has crazy eyes like that chick in orange is the new black and is the size of a free safety. Even late second rd was a reach for him. As for La-el…there’s Dallas’ 1st rd pick and he probably would have lasted until they drafted that rd anyway. Giants weren’t taking him over Flowers and barely any other OL went.

    I’ll give them one thing. They do have a nice little line. Who’s running behind it is anyone’s guess though.

  52. When all is said and done, Romo will put up big numbers, they will run for thousands of yards behind this OLine and then STILL Choke in the Playoffs. LOL C’mon you know it’s True.

  53. This is going to be the best offensive line in NFL history. Mark my words. ~Youthful Rookie

    Gotta love when these kids just step in and project themselves with the likes of….

    Oakland – Jim Otto, Gene Upshaw, Art Shell, George Buehler, Bob Brown

    Washington – “The Hogs”- Joe Jacoby, Russ Grimm, Jim Lachey, Raleigh McKenzie, Jeff Bostic, Mark Schlereth, Mark May

    Pittsburgh – Jon Kolb, Sam Davis, Ray Mansfield, Mike Webster

    Houston – Mike Munchak, Bruce Mathews, Bruce Davis, Dean Steinkuler, Jay Pinner

    Dallas – Mark Stepnoski, Nate Newton, Mark Tuinei, Erik Williams, Larry Allen

    We don’t need to hear it just show it.

  54. When I hear this kind of stuff, I just laugh. If the Cowboys are so good why did they need a BS interference call to beat the Lions. With a 37 year old QB, a rotten defense and their best RB in Philly, they’ll be lucky to go 9-7.

    ——————————————————
    TRUTH! 2014 stats for Dallas show only one stat in the Top 5 (rushing). One stat at #7 and all the rest outside of 10 and in the teens.

    They didn’t even finish with a Top 5 offense last year.

    So I wouldn’t bet any $$ on it folks. The Top 5 offenses last year would beg to differ with you that Dallas has the best o-line. The stats say “it ain’t so.” Dream on…

  55. And he will be watching it from the sideline. He must have been scared to get his hands dirty and stayed away from any team that would get him playing time right away.

  56. great signing for the cowboys but didn’t a pathetic redskins pass rush destroy that o-line and romo’s back in that night game where a 4th round rookie shut down the great dez?

  57. This is gonna be sweet. The Cowboys blowing holes in that already Swiss cheese of a giant defense, and Romo waiting as long as he wants in the pocket, until he finds his man in the open for 6. Loving it!!!

  58. To bad you have one of the worst quarterbacks in history

    —————————————————–

    People who don’t respect Romo are CLUELESS, period. Why don’t you all take a look at career QBR ratings and see where Tony Romo is because evidently he’s the 2nd best QB in HISTORY (behind Rodgers). Better QBR than every single QB you have ever heard of, except for Rodgers. That is staggering.

    Now cue the idiots talking about SB rings as if defense and special teams have no bearing on winning it.

  59. maestro1899 says:
    May 7, 2015 5:59 PM
    I thought it was reported NFL teams couldn’t sign him or even meet with him until LSU’s graduation, on May 8.

    Did I miss an update on that? How is this possible?
    __________________________________

    Teams just couldn’t meet with Collins on LSU campus since finals where not yet completed. At least , that’s how I understood it. Rex Ryan had already met with Collins before the Cowboys did.

  60. Best blocking unit ever: early 2000’s KC Chiefs. Roaf, Waters, Weigman, Shields and Tait, with Dunn and Gonzalez as the TE’s and Richardson as the FB.

    Name a better group.

  61. guitarmaninks says:
    May 7, 2015 7:32 PM
    So next year what stops a player from making crap up so he can choose his fav team? Easy to fake some crap when a guy comes from a small town, gets local law to make crap up for him then say it was all a big mistake. I understand that isn’t what happened this time but the NFL response as it stands just opened the door
    ——————————————————

    I understand what you are saying, but the huge flaw to your logic is that if a player who is a guaranteed first round talent, as Collins was, they are not going to go through the scenario your presented and take $8-10 million less just so they can play for the team they want to play for. People have estimated that Collins is making about $9million less on his contract with the Cowboys than he would if he was selected in the top 15 picks in the first round.

    I know you said this isn’t what Collins did, but players aren’t going to take that big of a financial hit to play for their favorite team. That’s why I don’t think this opens any sort of Pandora’s box.

  62. It’s really a shame how Jerrauh was given the opportunity to rape him financially..Cowgirls fans will tell us he’s a genius.. Whatever, and then pay 75 bucks to park for a regular season game…for a team that has won two playoff games with in two decades…don’t you get it by now?

  63. laxcoach37 says:
    May 7, 2015 5:12 PM
    Congrats to the Cowboys. This is a steal, but the reason he signed is because the Cowboys guaranteed the full $1.67M no matter what. That does come with some risk.

    Uhh yeah I think the risk is 1.67m over 3 years,thnx Capt. Obvious

  64. Wow, slow your roll, cupcake. I’ve been a fan of the NFL long enough to see even top 5 draft talent at tackle bust (Levi Brown comes to mind). Besides, what are you doing talking, rookie?

  65. ******BREAKING NEWS*******
    Dallas Cowboys financing Murders Defense

    This is the worst case scenario.

    1.7mill fully guaranteed buys some good lawyers.
    Well Jerry is a gambler.

  66. Great OL but they will regret not drafting Rb in the first 2 rounds, McFadden can’t make anyobody miss, poor vision and those thin legs makes him so easy to tackle.
    Good Luck with that.

  67. 700levelvet says:
    May 7, 2015 9:26 PM
    It’s really a shame how Jerrauh was given the opportunity to rape him financially..Cowgirls fans will tell us he’s a genius.. Whatever, and then pay 75 bucks to park for a regular season game…for a team that has won two playoff games with in two decades…don’t you get it by now?

    ———————

    The Cowboys have him the max salary permitted.. So any team that wanted him would have given him that much. I pay $40 to park at the stadium, guess you have never been to a game. You don’t get this is Americas Team and now has an even more awesome offensive line than last years.. Lol

  68. People who don’t respect Romo are CLUELESS, period. Why don’t you all take a look at career QBR ratings and see where Tony Romo is because evidently he’s the 2nd best QB in HISTORY (behind Rodgers). Better QBR than every single QB you have ever heard of, except for Rodgers. That is staggering.

    ——————————————————
    Correct, but that’s ALL he’s got. One division title, no SBs.

    And HOF and his name are never in the same sentence together.

    Romo was ranked #11 out of 32 QBs in 2014. That is NOT the definition of the 2nd best QB in History.

    The Top #5 were:
    Manning
    Rodgers
    Brady
    Brees
    Rivers

    Romo didn’t even make the Top 10.

    Seriously, you Dallas fans must be drinking the kool-aid big time!

  69. 700levelvet says:
    May 7, 2015 9:26 PM
    It’s really a shame how Jerrauh was given the opportunity to rape him financially..Cowgirls fans will tell us he’s a genius.. Whatever, and then pay 75 bucks to park for a regular season game…for a team that has won two playoff games with in two decades…don’t you get it by now?
    ————————————————-

    First of all, how are you claiming that Jones financially raped him? All 32 teams had at least 5 chances to select him during the draft and passed. Also, every team had the opportunity to sign him as an UDFA. The Cowboys weren’t the only team given the opportunity to do so.

    I am a Cowboy fan, but I don’t agree with anyone claiming that Jones is a genius for signing him. It was kind of a no-brainer. 26 other teams were interested in visiting with Collins to try to sign him. Collins just simply selected the team he wanted to play for. He would have gotten the same deal from any of the other 26 teams that wanted to sign him.

    The real shame is the timing that Collins was brought in by the police for something it turns out he had nothing to do with and it cost him a lot of money. It’s not the Cowboys fault that the situation occured.

  70. ——————————————————
    Correct, but that’s ALL he’s got. One division title, no SBs.

    And HOF and his name are never in the same sentence together.

    Romo was ranked #11 out of 32 QBs in 2014. That is NOT the definition of the 2nd best QB in History.

    The Top #5 were:
    Manning
    Rodgers
    Brady
    Brees
    Rivers

    Romo didn’t even make the Top 10.

    Seriously, you Dallas fans must be drinking the kool-aid big time!
    ———————————–

    What rankings are you looking at???? Romo had the highest QBR last year..

  71. Well, we now have the Vince Young “Dream Team” declaration from Collins. The implosion of the Cowboys next season is going to be epic.

  72. and if the NFL office warned teams to stay away because of the PR nightmare, that is called collusion and I hope the kid sues them back to the stoneage. Of course the NFL has already gotten away with collusion during the uncapped year so maybe its time to bring the feds in if this happes. They can’t be trusted to police themselves after all.

  73. Here is something pretty interesting.

    From a Cowboys perspective, if they had known in hindsight that they would be getting Collins an an UDFA, I’d bet anything they are wishing they had passed on Chaz Green in the 3rd round and gotten their RB. They had a chance to get Buck Allen, Mike Davis, and Jeremy Langford, in the 3rd, who they all liked, but they were all picked by the time they made their 4th round pick.

  74. Better O-lines include 1972-1976 Raiders, 1972-1974 Dolphins, 1993-1995 Cowpies, and 1961-1967 Packers. The 1970s Steelers are probably in there too, and maybe the 1960s Browns.

  75. As usual the 12 year olds on here have no grasp of NFL history pre-ESPN. The Hall of Fame named the Raiders’ o-line of the 70’s the greatest o-line in the first 75 years of the league for a reason, kids.

  76. nope. Allow me to correct you Mr. Collins.

    The Best O Line in History was when the Chiefs had Willie Roaf, Brian Waters, TIm Grunhard, Will Shields and John Tait. They opened highways for Priest Holmes and Larry Johnson to run through.

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