Amari Cooper, DeMarcus Lawrence, key rookie among 6 Cowboys to start camp on PUP list

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For the most part, it was an uneventful offseason for the Dallas Cowboys. Surely, they signed quarterback Dak Prescott to the league’s second-biggest contract ever and largest amounts on the front-end of a deal. Yes, they decided they were going to have Hard Knocks document their training camp experience for the world to see. But there’s been very little in the waves department and that’s a good thing.

Now that camp has officially opened for them and the Pittsburgh Steelers, participants in the Hall of Fame Game to kick off the exhibition season, there are actual football things to discuss. As Dallas opens their first practice for the 2021 season, the news will now center around performance, and who isn’t able to perform. On that front, the team will start camp without six of their 90-man roster, unable to participate as they have been placed on the PUP list. WR Amari Cooper, DE DeMarcus Lawrence and rookie DE Chauncey Golston are the most prominent names.

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Defensive tackle Trysten Hill is also noteworthy, as he was knocked out of the season last year with an ACL injury. ESPN’s Todd Archer adding that he will need the most rehab time is troubling for him because Dallas’ defensive interior has been a sore spot. A surprise second-round pick in 2019, Hill came in with question marks and hasn’t been able to make a name for himself in the pros. Now on his third defensive coordinator in three years in Dan Quinn, him being available to learn the nuances of the defenses seems imperative.

Hyatt missed last year with injuries and is a former UDFA tackle who would widely be considered on the bubble this season.

While back injuries are scary propositions for any player, fans likely shouldn’t be concerned about Greg Zuerlein until and only if the team brings in another leg for camp duties. Right now the Cowboys carry two punters but no extra kicker.

The PUP during training camp is not a big deal at the time. Any player can be activated from it at any time. Its importance is that if said player still isn’t ready by the time the regular season rolls around, it gives the teams added flexibility when cutting down to 53 players for the regular season. The player can stay with the club, miss the first week of the season but never have to be placed on season-ending IR or waived and risked exposure.

Cooper’s ankle injury is in line with his consistent foot injuries which have hampered him for years but rarely keep him out of the WR rotation come the regular season. He’s dealing with ankle irritation.

Lawrence had back surgery in 2016 and has dealt with the issue in the past few years on and off, but the team has said previously there is not much concern at this time.