The Cowboys appear to be set on the defensive line this year now that former all-pro La'Roi Glover has been added to the mix and Ebenezer Ekuban has apparently recovered from last season's lower back injury.
That doesn't mean that there won't be some tinkering around with the lineup though.
The Cowboys are weighing out all their options before anything is set in stone, and some of those options include LB Kevin Hardy lining up at defensive end.
"We looked back at every single play that Hardy was in 3 years ago when he was with the Jaguars, and we found that he was most effective on the blitz," said Defensive Line Coach Andre Patterson on Thursday.
1999 was Hardy's pro-bowl year at Jacksonville when he recorded 10.5 sacks.
"We think he could be as effective as he was in '99 as a defensive end, but we'll find out for sure in training camp." said Patterson.
The logic behind the move is that it will put the defense in a position to get more pressure on the quarterback, and ultimately more sacks.
Hardy would be able to utilize his quickness off the line of scrimmage to create more havoc in the backfield.
In passing situations, Dallas will move Greg Ellis from defensive end to defensive tackle with La'Roi Glover, and let ends Ebenezer Ekuban and Peppi Zellner rush from the outside. Hardy would also be able to step in to help out the pass rush when necessary.
"We think our defensive line will be position to make some big plays this year. We have alot of quickness there up front," said Patterson.
Of course, a large part of this depends on how Hardy's knee holds up after having off-season injury.
Fortunately, its been nothing but good news so far- but we likely won't know anything more until he's practicing under full-contact conditions.
Hardy as a Defensive End?
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