Free agent outlook: Nick Cole

The series you must read continues today with a look at Philadelphia Eagles guard Nick Cole. The Cowboys' starting left guard, Kyle Koiser, is a free agent, and while he did have a good season, he's 32, and the team might go with a younger player: Enter Mr. Cole.

Here's a look.


Why sign him? Cole can play both guard positions and even center. He's younger -- turns 27 in July -- and while the team does have fourth-round pick David Arkin, the Cowboys haven't done a very good job developing offensive linemen in the past. So who knows if Arkin can play? Cole can not only replace Kosier, who turns 33 in November, but there's a chance he can take over for Leonard Davis at right guard. The Cowboys have been frustrated with Davis' play in the past -- he was even benched during a game last year -- but did return and finished 2010 strong. In a pinch, Cole can fill in for center Andre Gurode. Cole started one game at center in 2010. The interesting thing about Kosier is the amount of years he would want on a new contract. Do you give Kosier a three-year deal where he'll be 35 at the end of it? Or go for a younger product in Cole?

Is there anybody else?The Cowboys could stick with Kosier; he might sign a three-year deal. If Arkin develops, the team can always cut Kosier. Cole dealt with knee problems last season and that could be a red flag for the Cowboys, as well. If the Cowboys can't sign Cole or Kosier, Atlanta Falcons guard Justin Blalock is available on the market. Blalock probably wants a bigger contract than Cole, but he's started every game the last three seasons. He's improved every year he's been in the league and he's a good charatcer guy.

Key Stat:Kosier has missed 16 games the last three seasons due to injury.