Scandrick has a fractured left hand, an injury suffered during the team’s win over the Giants in Week 1. In the game’s immediate fallout Jerry Jones speculated that Orlando could play through it, but at the very least he won’t in Denver.
Orlando Scandrick is unquestionably the team’s best cornerback. He’s also the oldest, most experienced, and one of its more prominent leaders to the point that he was elected as a team captain this year. His absence is big.
Thankfully though, the Cowboys have a plethora of talent in terms of their cornerbacks. There’s second-year man Anthony Brown (possessor of the team’s only interception on the young season), rookies Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis (the latter of which will make his debut on Sunday), and veteran Nolan Carroll.
Broncos quarterback Trevor Siemian isn’t Peyton Manning from four years ago when these teams last met, but he’s capable enough. He threw for 219 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception on Monday Night Football against the Chargers.
Consider all of this and imagine the state of the Cowboys cornerbacks if not for Nolan Carroll. They’d have a sophomore and two freshmen leading the way, against a team led by Siemian with two dynamic wide receivers in Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders.
Nolan Carroll has had it pretty rough with Cowboys fans ever since joining the team this past offseason in free agency. Few were fans of who he was as a football player, and matters were made all the more worse when he was arrested on suspicion of a DWI back in early June.
After all the discussion and debate Nolan Carroll came out and played well for the Cowboys in their season opener against the Giants, albeit with an Odell-less New York offense to cover. Now Carroll provides the lone light of legitimate veteran presence considering Scandrick’s absence (for however long that is).
Of course, the Cowboys traded for Bene Benwikere in the final moments of the initial construction of their 53-man roster, but would you really want your veteran to be Benwikere at this point? That’s nothing against him, just speaking practically considering how late he joined the team.
Nolan Carroll is an extreme safety net that the Cowboys are now using, to the point that the general sense regarding Scandrick’s injury is “we’ll be fine.” Had it not been for Carroll though, the secondary would hardly be classified that way.
Round of applause for Nolan Carroll. It’s time.