Jayron Kearse active, rookie WR Tolbert inactive for Cowboys vs. Bucs

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Looking to find redemption for their 2021 opener, the Cowboys will enter their rematch with a very different crew of receivers, but it won’t include third-round pick Jalen Tolbert. Dennis Houston earned the spot on the active roster for the matchup with the Buccaneers.

Tolbert’s camp was an inconsistent one, failing to jump off the screen on tape but it’s no reason for panic in Dallas. Fellow receiver Michael Gallup is also inactive, but that was to be expected as he’s coming off a torn ACL and the Cowboys seem content to make sure he’s 100% when he makes his return.

The latter of the six inactives are all on defense, including fifth-round defensive tackle John Ridgeway, whose spot on the 53-man roster wasn’t certain so the healthy scratch is no surprised. Cornerback Nahshon Wright was a target for opposing defenses in the preseason and a high note interception in the final game didn’t earn him Week 1 snaps considering the rise of DaRon Bland.

The final three are surprises. Linebacker Jabril Cox stepped into playing time after Jaylon Smith’s release in 2021 before a torn ACL delayed his rise. The arrival of Anthony Barr moved him down the depth chart and Devin Harper earned the last spot at linebacker for the season opener.

Safeties Markquese Bell and Israel Mukuamu were both tremendous in preseason, so it’s a surprise to see neither taking the field against Tampa Bay. On the other side of the coin, Jayron Kearse will take the field after a neck injury during the week leading up.  Kearse’s sudden success in Dallas was a key to the defense’s improvement last season under defensive coordinator Dan Quinn.

For Tampa Bay, the biggest news has been known all day, that WR Chris Godwin will play. Backup tight end Kyle Rudolph is inactive while wide receiver Scotty Miller’s healthy scratch is a casualty of Julio Jones’ arrival. Quarterback Kyle Trask, running back Ke’Shawn Vaughn, backup right tackle Fred Johnson and cornerback Zyon McCollum round out the five inactives for the visitors. The second iteration of Cowboys-Buccaneers to open the season kicks off at 7:20 p.m. on NBC.

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Story originally appeared on Cowboys Wire