Initial Injury Report: Cowboys-Chargers missing several key pieces as Week 2 tilt nears

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In the first game of the 2021 season, the Dallas Cowboys saw wide receiver Michael Gallup leave with a calf strain and safety Damontae Kazee was poked in the eye. It took just one game for the Cowboys to lose a large impact starter and right tackle Lael Collins is now suspended for five games, adding to the absences.

Heading towards a second-straight road game, this time against the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday, Dallas needs to be as healthy as possible. Wednesday was not a good day in that regard. DeMarcus Lawrence, the team’s best defensive payer, is the big name on Wednesday’s injury report after breaking his foot and is now out indefinitely.

Safety Donovan Wilson is dealing with a nagging groin injury and going against Justin Herbert and the Chargers offense, Dallas needs to have their best veteran talent on the field come Sunday. Defensive end Chauncey Golston is back as a full participant, which is a good sight after dealing with injuries since he was drafted by the Cowboys.

Rookie cornerback Nahshon Wright also missed practice for personal reasons but should be a full-go for Sunday.

Lawrence had a strong season debut with a team-high 91.4 PFF grade with five quarterback pressures alongside the highest run-defense grade of Week 1 at 96.3.

Lawrence’s injury has even more importance with opposite defensive end Randy Gregory being on the COVID/reserve list after testing positive on Monday. If both of Dallas’ best edge defenders are out, Herbert could have a field day similar to that of Tom Brady in Week 1.

For the Chargers, there is also a list of starters who could be hampered or even out for the tilt with the Cowboys.

Five of the Chargers’ defensive starters are on the injury report, with all but one not participating in practice on Wednesday. In the secondary, both safeties missed practice and Derwin James Jr. is one of the biggest playmakers on Los Angeles’ defense, making seven tackles in Week 1 after missing all of the 2020 season due to injury.

The Cowboys’ offense has plenty of weapons even with Gallup on returnable-IR and will likely target the backups after offensive coordinator Kellen Moore made it a focus against Tampa Bay.

Chargers’ starting right tackle Bryan Bulaga also missed practice but the potential impact of his absence is numbed by Lawrence’s injury. The pass rush against Herbert will be integral in Dallas’ success on Sunday and both teams could be without a multitude of starters for the matchup.