The offensive line for the Dallas Cowboys is often talked about in hushed and reverent tones. Now only the hushed tones remain, like loved ones huddled around a death bed. Okay, it’s not that serious, but the position that once paved the way for an explosive offense is now being dragged by it, and the reinforcements might not be on the way back yet.
La’el Collins and Tyron Smith are two of the best tackles in all of football. They have combined to play one game in 2020. Collins remains on injured reserve while Smith remains in a perpetual state of “game-time decision.” Stephen Jones took to 105.3 The Fan’s airwaves to discuss that and more.
Cowboys VP Stephen Jones said on @1053thefan that Tyron Smith (neck) is still day to day but he was close to playing Sunday. Jones said La’el Collins is “probably a little further away. He’s working through a couple injuries that he’s trying to get right.”
— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) September 28, 2020
It’s possible Smith returns to the field against the Cleveland Browns in Week 4, but his long-term health will seemingly be a question moving forward. He’s missed three games each of the last three years.
Collins, on the other hand, is just as concerning in the here and now. There’s been rumblings that he showed up to camp in poor shape and ultimately was injured because of it, and the COO’s comments do nothing to assuage the fear that he’ll be out longer than originally anticipated.
“He’s just working with a couple of issues that he’s trying to get right. As we said, didn’t want to get in specifics in terms of exactly what his injury is or injuries are, but working through all that with him, trying to get him in a place where he can get himself ready to play at a high level again.”
In the game, the Cowboys ended up moving All-Pro right guard Zack Martin out to tackle due to in-game injuries. That’s not something Jones believes will be the norm.
“No, I think when Tyron gets back we’ll have Knight and Steele. Should be back 100%… But those guys coming back, I think getting Zack Martin back in at his usual spot. I think we’re a better group that way.”
In other news, for those hoping for a certain safety to be brought into the fold to solve the secondary’s woes, think again.
Stephen Jones says on @1053thefan that the Cowboys do not anticipate bringing in any defensive backs this week at this point.
— RJ Ochoa (@rjochoa) September 28, 2020
Jones spoke on how the unit performed on Sunday, with Seahawks receivers roaming free everywhere one looked. “I feel like they had their moments. You got to give credit to Russell Wilson. He’s probably playing maybe the highest level in the NFL at the quarterback position. He’s able to buy time and give his receivers time, get open down the field. At times, we had some tough moments, but at times we played really well.”
“I do think this is a work in progress and defense more so than offense because we are working into a new systems with Coach Nolan and his staff and really figuring the players out and the system out and I do think this is going to come around. Each half is like we make our adjustments at halftime, and we play much better defense in the second half. So, I think this is going to come around in due time.”
The Cowboys are going to make due with what they have on an injury-riddled roster. The holes along the offensive line will be plugged internally while the holes in the secondary will likely continue to be filled with opposing wide receivers.
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