Orlando Scandrick Greg Hardy Rolando McClain Dez Bryant Randy Gregory Ronald Leary Tony Romo Terrell McClain
Despite these injuries, the Cowboys remain a solid top 10 team in most of the 17 power rankings we review today. Much more interesting though is the battle for the bottom of the NFC East in this week's power rankings. Who will it be, the 2015 Preseason World Champions, the Giants, or the Redskins?
Find out as we review today's power rankings for the Cowboys below, and for the rest of the division a little farther below.
Week 3 Rankings (previous rankings in parenthesis)
CBSSports.com - No. 3 (3)
They have to play now without Tony Romo, which certainly won't be easy. But I will keep them here for now, until they lose. It's Brandon Weeden time.
ProFootballTalk - No. 4 (4)
FOX Sports - No. 5 (4)
With Tony Romo out for about eight weeks, the Cowboys will have to adjust their offense, but in 2015 they have a defense that they can rely on more heavily. Sean Lee looked good in Week 2, and edge rushers Greg Hardy (suspended) and Randy Gregory (injured) are on their way back.
MLive.com - No. 6 (8)
No one has had worse luck than Dallas, losing both star receiver Dez Bryant and QB Tony Romo for several weeks. Still, they've managed to come away with two early wins behind the stout play of the defense.
CBSSports.com (Kirwan) - No. 6 (6)
The Cowboys are looking at facing the resurgent Falcons and red-hot Patriots in the next three weeks without Tony Romo or Dez Bryant. Fortunes could be taking a turn for the worst quickly in Big D.
Bleacher Report - No. 6 (3)
Before you hurl rotten vegetables at your computer screen and wonder how a team that's still undefeated can fall three spots, please realize this descent has little to do with what the Dallas Cowboys are right now. Rather, it's tied to what they could quickly become. Injuries happen, sure, because football can sort of suck like that. But the Cowboys' injuries are the kind that can derail a season fast.
Shutdown Corner - No. 7 (6)
The Cowboys aren't going to be as good without Tony Romo and Dez Bryant. But again, who in that division can take advantage? This is the 2013 Packers and Aaron Rodgers all over again; the Cowboys will still win the division because nobody else is good enough to take it (but still, I can't rank them as high as they would be if they were healthy).
Washington Post - No. 8 (7)
The new Cowboys’ "triplets" on offense are Brandon Weeden, Joseph Randle and Terrance Williams. Canton awaits. In the meantime, the defense that mostly was just along for the ride last season will have to be responsible for winning games if Dallas is to remain the team to beat in the NFC East.
Newsday - No. 9 (7)
Costly win over the Eagles for the Cowboys, who lose Tony Romo to a fractured clavicle a week after losing Dez Bryant to a fractured foot. It's Brandon Weeden or bust until Romo's return.
ESPN - No. 12 (5)
Tony Romo's injury thrusts Brandon Weeden into the spotlight. Weeden hasn't won a game as a starter since Week 14 of 2012 (0-8 since).
NFL.com - No. 13 (8)
It's 2010 all over again, except for the fact that Jon Kitna's not around this time. (Jon Kitna > Brandon Weeden.) What kind of Bizarro World are we in where Sean Lee is healthy and Tony Romo and Dez Bryant are hurt? Obviously, Romo's fractured clavicle is devastating to the Dallas organization. From a larger standpoint, Romo's window of opportunity is closing rapidly. He's 35 and lacks some of the pocket quickness he displayed five years ago. Romo was never fast, but he was quick in a phone booth. And here I am talking him like he's dead. Cowboys fans must be in mourning about their season right now. But they won't have to worry as much if the defense plays the brand of ball it played in Philly.
USA Today - No. 17 (11)
This ranking is all about speculation on future returns as opposed to past performance.
FiveThirtyEight - No. 5 (5). Elo ratings are a simple system that estimates each team’s skill level using only the final scores and locations of each game.
Sagarin Ratings: No. 5 (- -). These are rankings based on W/L record, points differential and schedule strength.
Oddsshark: No. 6 (7). Oddsshark use a multitude of stats to establish an offensive and defensive power ranking, which they then adjust for the strength of schedule.
Numberfire - No. 7 (7) These rankings are based on expected point differential against a league average team. If the team's rating is 10, they would be expected to win by 10 points against a league-average opponent.
Teamrankings.com - No. 8 (13). This site measures the relative strength of all teams using team performance, home/away status, margin of victory and other factors.
The table below summarizes the power rankings for the four NFC East teams as well as the Cowboys' next opponent, the Atlanta Falcons.
How do you feel about these NFC East rankings, and who would you rate as the worst team in the East?