Follow The Fan: Facebook | Twitter

FRISCO (105.3 THE FAN) – Ronald Leary told me he felt “blessed’’ to be back in the Cowboys lineup for Sunday’s 31-17 win over the Bears, though “it wasn’t the way I wanted it to happen.’’

It happened because left guard starter La’el Collins — the prized youngster who was given Leary’s old job last year — left the game with what apparently is a torn ligament in his toe/foot that could sideline him for eight weeks and require surgery.

The Cowboys are hoping for better news from the MRI on Dez Bryant’s knee. But for the moment, they can be both troubled by the coming Collins absence and feeling “blessed’’ themselves that they resisted the summer temptation to trade away Leary, who was disgruntled as a backup.

“I was prepared,’’ said Leary, who has served as a big-brother mentor to Collins. “It felt good to be playing football. I love the game so much … What I’ve been going through has been really frustrating. I’ve been keeping my faith. And … things happen.’’

But now it’s Collins’ turn to be frustrated … and Cowboys Nation’s turn to be frustrated as it waits for Dez news.