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NFL Dallas Cowboys

Ronald Leary Gives the Dallas Cowboys Hope Following Rookie Minicamp

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

I didn’t think so at first, but is it possible that second-year man Ronald Leary’s development is the reason the Dallas Cowboys did not draft a guard in the 2013 NFL Draft?

In 2012, the 6-3 325 lbs. offensive guard by way of Memphis caught the Cowboys’ attention early on in the draft process; however, due to a degenerative disorder in his left knee called Osteochondritis dissecans, (OCD) Leary was not drafted.

Despite the knee concerns, the Cowboys didn’t shy away from Leary and even went as far as having him work out privately for offensive line coach Bill Callahan. After the Draft, the Cowboys made Leary an offer he could not refuse; they guaranteed $205,000 of his $390,000 rookie base salary for signing with the team as an undrafted free agent.

Leary was able to get some playing time almost immediately because incumbent starter Mackenzy Bernadeau was recovering from multiple offseason surgeries. This season, it is reasonable to think that Leary will make a solid push at one of the starting spots whether it is replacing Bernadeau on the right side or Nate Livings on the left.

Last week, Leary attended the Cowboys-Rookie Minicamp and impressed head coach Jason Garrett. Granted, he was practicing against rookies and other second-year guys, but he’s at least showing some promise.

“Ron made a lot of progress over the course of the year last year, did a good job working in scout team,” Garrett said. “We saw the improvement as the year wore on. So it’ll be a nice opportunity for him once we get into the OTAs and regular training camp to see what he can do.”

Hopefully, Leary will continue to develop as the offseason progresses. If that happens, along with the addition of first round center Travis Frederick, the Cowboys may have finally found the solution to their problem along the interior of the offensive line.

Jesus Flores is a Dallas Cowboys writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @SSgtFlo1 or add him to your network on Google