Un­proven Free has team’s con­fi­dence at cru­cial spot

With Adams gone, left tackle with just seven starts gets the job

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS - By Stephen Hawkins

SAN AN­TO­NIO — Tony Romo no longer has a five-time Pro Bowl left tackle pro­tect­ing his blind side for the Dal­las Cow­boys.

Yet, go­ing into a sea­son with Su­per Bowl ex­pec­ta­tions, the Cow­boys don’t seem too concerned that un­proven Doug Free is re­plac­ing Flozell Adams in that vi­tal role. Free has started only seven NFL games, and those were on the other side of the of­fen­sive line.

“The tenac­ity he plays with, I think that stuff’s con­ta­gious for your team. He’s al­ways try­ing to pick up an ex­tra block and do those things down­field,” Pro Bowl tight end Ja­son Wit­ten said. “He knows what the chal­lenges are play­ing left tackle in this league.”

The Cow­boys re­leased ex­pen­sive 12-year vet­eran Adams, the 35-yearold who had started 178 games and still had four sea­sons left on his con­tract. His re­place­ment is a for­mer fourth-round pick from North­ern Illi­nois who played only one quar­ter his first two sea­sons be­fore fill­ing in

Tony Gu­tier­rez

See COW­BOYS, C Dal­las Cow­boys of­fen­sive tackle Doug Free has im­pressed team­mates at train­ing camp in a po­si­tion long held by Flozell Adams.

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