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Projected 2015 starters: Dallas Cowboys

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Around The NFL predicts the Week 1 starting lineups for all 32 teams, analyzing the potential impact of each rookie class. See every breakdown here.

Cowboys Projected Starters
  Offense Defense
  QB Tony Romo DE Demarcus Lawrence
  RB Darren McFadden DT Nick Hayden
  WR1 Dez Bryant DT Tyrone Crawford
  WR2 Terrance Williams DE Jeremy Mincey
  WR3 Cole Beasley OLB Anthony Hitchens
  TE Jason Witten MLB Rolando McClain
  LT Tyron Smith OLB Sean Lee
  LG La'el Collins CB1 Brandon Carr
  C Travis Frederick CB2 Byron Jones
  RG Zack Martin SLOT Orlando Scandrick
  RT Doug Free SS Barry Church
  FS J.J. Wilcox
 

» Stop us if you've heard this before: The Cowboys are thin in the backfield. After allowing DeMarco Murray to sign with the Eagles, Dallas is hoisting up Darren McFadden as a candidate for a roaring comeback campaign. We like anyone's chances behind the NFL's top offensive line, but McFadden has operated as an injury-prone mess in recent years. If he struggles, Joseph Randle and Lance Dunbar could quickly turn this backfield into a committee.

» Speaking of the O-line, I'm throwing La'el Collins into the lineup ahead of veteran left guard Ronald Leary. If the rookie can live up to the hype, Dallas might be even better up front come September.

» I don't have Randy Gregory listed above, but the second-round pass rusher is going to see plenty of time in a rotation with Jeremy Mincey. With the promising Demarcus Lawrence on the other side, it will be interesting to see how the team handles snaps once Greg Hardy returns from his 10-game suspension.

» Fingers crossed that Sean Lee can play a full season, something the linebacker has never done as pro. Dallas hopes to lessen the chance of an injury by shifting Lee from the middle to the Will spot. Rolando McClain will take Lee's old position with Anthony Hitchens lining up in the Sam.

» Byron Jones allows the team to downplay disappointing corner Morris Claiborne. Jones has the size to take on bigger wideouts and might ultimately be moved to safety. He'll start his career at corner, though, with Scandrick -- in this exercise -- moving to the slot.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast welcomes Lindsay Rhodes to discuss the Patriots' response in the "Deflategate" saga and the latest names revealed on the "The Top 100 Players of 2015" countdown. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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