If you're anything like me, you couldn't wait to sit down and watch some football Sunday and Monday night. After such a great game by the Cowboys, we were all hungry for more and an entire week without football was just going to be too long. Right?
I have a feeling that's not exactly the way it went down.
Truthfully, I felt disgusted Sunday night and the last thing I wanted to do was to watch any other team actually play well enough to win a game. I avoided ESPN and the Dallas Morning News and I headed out to play some golf, to put it all out of my head and hopefully regroup enough so I could approach the game of football rationally once more. I recovered enough that I found myself watching Monday Night Football highlights on Tuesday morning at the gym and I came away with two very distinct impressions:
A) ESPN will go at any length necessary to make Brett Favre look good, even when he plays horribly in a loss, and B) Brett Favre was certainly clutching that right elbow a lot after making several poor throws.
Today we start to get word that the tendinitis in Favre's throwing elbow might be bad enough to cause him to miss this weekend's game against the Dallas Cowboys. He is not practicing today for the Vikings and there is apparently a fairly decent chance he misses his first game in nearly 20 years. Is that even possible?
Find out after the jump.
Talking to the media today in Minnesota, Brett Favre had this to say:
"You're not going to make every throw but I would have made some of those throws," said Favre, who was wearing a wrap on the elbow during his weekly news conference at Winter Park. "From that standpoint, I don't want to play just to play."
Favre would later say that while he's not certain the tendinitis will just "go away", he also thinks that perhaps "the most important thing is rest." Favre has said that he's not going to play if the only point is to keep the streak alive; he want to be able to give the Vikings the best chance, playing or not.
I'm with Todd Archer: Until I see Brett Favre standing on the sideline on Sunday without any pads on his shoulders, I'm not going to believe Favre will miss this game. There is just too much riding on this one particular game for Favre to sit out, not if he is at least able to be effective. Consider this:
With the Cowboys and Vikings both sitting at 1-3, the loser of this game likely has seen the season completely slip away. This is essentially a playoff game for two teams that were expected to be facing off once more in the postseason.
This will be Randy Moss' return to Minnesota. He and Favre connected on a deep touchdown pass against the Jets and it certainly seems the two veterans are capable of building good chemistry in a short amount of time.
Yet would it also be possible that having Favre sit out of practice all week and take the field on Sunday would actually work in favor for the Cowboys? Favre won't be getting any extra reps during the week with Moss and if he plays anything close to his performance against the Jets, the Cowboys will have a great chance at getting to Favre early and often.
The Dallas Cowboys aren't without their own injury issues.
Alan Ball (shoulder), Dez Bryant (ankle, ribs), Bradie James (knee) and Igor Olshansky (knee) all missed Wednesday's practice. Martellus Bennett, who asked for a bigger part of the offensive pie then fell on his face when it was given to him, was able to practice despite an ankle injury.
It is expected that all players should be ready to play on Sunday against the Vikings, although there is some concern about the Ball injury. With the release of Mike Hamlin yesterday, the Cowboys now have three rookies to play at safety should Ball not be able to take the field. Would it be Danny McCray, who has an interception this season in limited time or would it be Akwasi Owusu-Ansah, who is a more talented but raw safety/corner hybrid"?
Martellus Bennett has apparently become more focused on football, dropping the "Marty B" persona and halting his YouTube antics. Last week Bennett made it known that he wanted more attention on offense as he was prepared to make more and bigger plays than he's been asked to make this season.
Against the Titans, Bennett was certainly targeted more often than in the past. He responded with two catches for 19 yards, a horrible dropped pass on a uncovered route in the flat and a lackluster effort on a high throw in the red zone that directly related to an interception.
The interception play was certainly the most frustrating as that is the sort of play Bennett was drafted to make. Supposedly he's the most athletic player on offense (although Miles Austin has taken that mantle for good, in my opinion) and he managed to get just a flailing hand on a high throw on a seam route. It wasn't an easy play by any means, but that's the sort of catch a quarterback needs his receiver to make in a tight game. Bennett acknowledged he was at fault on the play:
"I should have caught it," said Bennett, who sprained his ankle against the Titans but expects to practice Wednesday. "It’s all on me."
If Bennett's lack of eloquence is a sign of how tough things are with the Cowboys these days, then I don't know what is.
DeMarcus Ware is the best overall player on this team and is having himself one heck of a season that is being lost in the quagmire of team disappointment. Today, talking to the media, Ware acknowledged that the Cowboys are in a very tough spot and that from this point forward every game must be approached like a playoff game.
"I think every game after this is elimination," outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware said. "If you lose this game, the next game is even worse. How do you feel if you're coming out of this game 1-4? [A] 2-3 [record] sounds better and that's what you want. You want to get those numbers on the front end."
Finally, Mr. 4th & Long himself is likely to get called up from the practice squad this week to take the roster spot left open after Mike Hamlin's release. He practiced today with the first team special teams units and might not only be activated, but could be active on Sunday in Minnesota.