Mackenzy Bernadeau didn’t need to be told anything by anyone after the Cowboys drafted offensive lineman Zack Martin in the first round. Bernadeau, the team’s starting right guard last season, knew what it meant for him.
“I know the business,” Bernadeau said. “I know he’s going to come in and play somewhere. …I was prepped to know if he’s ready to come in take the right side, I’ll be competing or trying to play the left side or just be ready to prepare to if I need to play all three interior positions. I knew, and I didn’t have to have a conversation with anybody.”
The Cowboys signed Bernadeau to a four-year, $11 million contract before the 2012 season, and he started 25 games at right guard and two at center in two seasons. He was replaced by Brian Waters last season before Waters was lost for the season.
Now, Martin has moved in front of him, with Bernadeau shifting to left guard to compete with Ron Leary for the starting job. The two are splitting first-team snaps.
Bernadeau played left guard for most of his first three seasons in Carolina.
“It’s like learning to write with your left hand instead of your right hand,” Bernadeau said. “The only difference is that I was able to play the left side before, so I have some experience there, and it’s just getting used to the technique and the guys end up playing next to you. It’s more important to get used to the guys next to you and what their steps are than the techniques because I’ve played both sides before.”
Bernadeau also has been in the rotation at center, taking snaps there behind last year’s first-round pick, Travis Frederick. He said he will prepare for all three interior line positions.
“I’m just rotating in right now,” Bernadeau said of his role. “I understand the business. I know what the situation is. It’s just about working hard, getting better and just going to have the best five guys out there, and it is what it is.”
-- Charean Williams