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Cowboys news: Injuries are just adding to the Cowboys woes

The news of the day for the Cowboys.

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Tennessee Titans v Dallas Cowboys Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

First, this to set the overall tone for the day.

Scope For Connor Williams; Practice Update - Rob Phillips,
Rookie left guard Connor Williams was hurt on Monday and will have a scope done on his knee. But everything's just fine. (sob)

“We have some guys we have on our roster who we like,” Garrett said. (Backups) Xavier Su’a-Filo, Adam Redmond, those guys will get opportunities there and we’ll see how it plays out through the course of this week at practice.

“All options are available to us. We like all of our interior guys. We’ll just practice this week and see how it goes.”

Dallas Cowboys: Source: Cowboys LB Sean Lee expected to miss 4-6 weeks with hamstring injury | David Moore, SportsDay
Funny how you just don't hear people complaining as much about using that draft pick on Leighton Vander Esch.

Lee injured his left hamstring in Monday night's loss to Tennessee and will miss the next four to six weeks, a source said. The front end of that time frame would put the linebacker back on the field for the Cowboys rematch with Philadelphia on Dec. 9. The tail end would put his return against Tampa Bay on Dec. 23 with two weeks left in the regular season.

Sean Lee, Cowboys are facing a tough but obvious decision - Patrik Walker, 247 Sports
Sean Lee is a true warrior - but has been among the walking wounded far too much in his career. The Cowboys need to do something about him.

And so it has come to a point where only two logical choices exist, with one showing Lee the same door Tony Romo was forced to walk out of in 2016. A pre-June 1 release would yield the team $7 million in savings with only a $3.075 million dead money hit, those numbers unchanging if he's a post-June 1 designation. A pay cut and demotion to rotational duty is the perfect medicine here, transitioning the veteran to a coaching role for 2020 following what should be his retirement tour. It's clear the fire still burns inside of him to take the field and help the Cowboys in any way he can, but he's continually hamstrung -- literally -- by his own body.

For Dak Prescott, Jason Garrett, it's a question of words vs. reality - Todd Archer, Dallas Cowboys Blog- ESPN
Disclaimer. I have been a Jason Garrett supporter since he got the head coaching job. But those days are now in the past.

How much time does a coach get to put together a consistently contending team, especially when the owner is the general manager and believes he has put together a team that should contend?

Only Jones knows the answer. Garrett, the rest of the coaches and some players have eight weeks to prove something to Jones.

“Certainly this time of year, I think what you look for is results,” Jones said. “You’re going to have action no matter what at every level of our team and how the enthusiasm, how people react under pressure, how individuals react in adverse conditions, all of those things are important to assess. I look back on my personal activity and look at how I’ve acted in adverse situations and I look at how I acted in real, real positive situations. I think I do better at adverse situations than I do in a positive situation. Both of those will tear your ass up.”

If Cowboys offense is to right the ship, QB Prescott must improve | Mark Lane,
How much blame for this hot mess of a season should be laid on Dak Prescott? Maybe a lot.

First of all, he has been terrible at protecting the football, which is one of his biggest strengths. Part of the reason why people favored Prescott over injured incumbent Tony Romo in 2016 was the rookie was making big plays without turning the ball over, something that was Romo's reputation. Through eight games in 2016, Prescott had five fumbles and two interceptions. This season, Prescott has five interceptions and seven fumbles.

The most damning part about his turnovers is where they have occurred. Three of his five interceptions have occurred inside the opponent's 40-yard line, with two of them being inside the red zone. Not only is that seven points potentially taken off the board, but that's nearly always at least three points and momentum switching jerseys. He is now tied for both the most red zone interceptions with two and the most interceptions inside the 10-yard line with one.

What We Learned: Dallas, we have a quarterback problem - Ben Grimaldi, Cowboys Wire
It might feel like piling on. Or maybe it's just grasping the reality that the Cowboys' staff is really bungling their use of Dak.

We can spin the numbers for Dak Prescott all we want; compare his first 24 games to the last 16, and put the most positive spin about why he’s regressed out there for the world to see. The simple truth is, Prescott isn’t a very good player right now and he isn’t the answer for this Cowboys team as their long-term quarterback.

Nothing he’s shown us this year could lead anyone to believe that he’s ready to take the franchise where they want to go.

Prescott didn’t help his cause Monday night. Despite throwing two touchdown passes, he threw an inexplicable interception in the red zone and lost a fumble that led to the winning score for the Titans.

Is the Cowboys 2018 Season Circling the Drain? ✭ Brian Martin, Inside the Star
Can't disagree.

Even though the Dallas Cowboys 2018 season looks like it's circling the drain, I don't think we will see any drastic changes made. It's already too late for that unfortunately. But, these next five games could impact who remains on the Cowboys coaching staff for next season.

Like many of you, I'm more than ready to move on from Head Coach Jason Garrett and Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan. They just haven't been getting the job done and it's past time to see what some new blood can do. I think this five-game stretch will probably seal their fate in Dallas.

Decoding Linehan, Week 9: Tennessee takes line of scrimmage from Cowboys offense – Bob Sturm, The Athletic
Since this is behind a paywall, here's a synopsis of the whole article: Things suck in Dallas.

Unfortunately, despite a wide receiver debut that should definitely have you fired up, most of what we saw on Monday night was flat-out unacceptable from a team built to overpower opponents at the point of attack. The premise of investing everything in the offensive line was to steamroll through helpless opponents with relentless domination. There is no doubt that Travis Frederick’s illness has hurt, but offensive lines all over the league sustain injuries and absences. This machine has fallen apart with the absence of Tyron Smith last year and now Frederick this year. The sacks and the stuffed runs have gotten worse and worse as the season has unfolded.

Monday featured more of the same, but we can go all the way back to Week 5 to see this disturbing trend. Since the Houston game in Week 5, a stretch that has also contained the Jacksonville rout, the trip to Washington, and now Monday night, the Cowboys have surrendered the league’s 29th-best sack percentage. The only teams worse are Detroit, Oakland, and Tennessee. Dallas is 24th in total sacks allowed despite playing only four games, relative to many teams who have played five in that same stretch. Ouch.

Dallas Cowboys: Film room: 3 things we learned from Cowboys' disappointing loss to Titans, including the strange use of Dak Prescott | John Owning, SportsDay
This is also behind a paywall, which is a shame, since it has some great stuff in it, like this.

The Titans used an eclectic mix of concepts to roast the Cowboys defense on third down. Chidobe Awuzie and Byron Jones each gave up two third-down conversions when targeted. The Titans also leveraged a well-timed tunnel screen to convert on a third-and-long. Mariota's best throw of the night also came on third down, where he threaded the needle downfield between three Cowboys defenders. Mariota also used his feet on QB sneaks, zone reads and scrambles to convert on five third downs.

It's almost impossible to win a game when the defense allows the opposing team to convert on over 75 percent of their third-down chances. Not only does it allow the opposing team to extend drives and score, but it also wears down a defense.

Dallas Cowboys: The Cowboys did Dez Bryant a favor, and might end up with the last laugh in New Orleans | Kevin Sherrington, SportsDay
Dez Bryant signing with the Saints is not the best news for Dallas, since they face New Orleans on November 29th. But it may be very, very good for Dez.

Let's be clear: The Cowboys weren't wrong to let Dez go. Too much money, too many drops, too little impact. It had become clear that he and Dak had developed no rapport. Dak's immediate connection with Amari Cooper in the latter's first game not only served as one of the few bright spots Garrett referenced in his ill-timed opening remarks after the Tennessee debacle, it proved someone other than Cole Beasley gets Dak.

Just the same, if anyone can help Dez resurrect his career, it's Payton and Brees.

Dez will give Brees a fearless target over the middle and a nice option in the red zone. Like Tony Romo did when Dez was a threat, Brees puts the ball where he wants, which can help Dez make plays.

Jason Garrett "Happy" For Dez Bryant After Deal With Saints | 105.3 The Fan staff
Seriously, did you expect Redball to say anything else?

"Dez is a great player. Dez was a great player in this organization for a long time. Really happy for him and that opportunity,” Garrett said. “I know it’s important to him. He wants to finish his career strong. He’s done such a great job for this organization and been an impact player in this league over the course of his eight years playing. Seems like a real good opportunity for him. I know he’ll help their team.”

'Most Misunderstood Man in NFL' Dez Bryant 'gets 6' with Saints - Mike Fisher, 247 Sports
Maybe it's time to move on from the "Dez is washed" talk about why he hadn’t been signed.

In my conversations with the former Pro Bowler since Dallas released hum last April, he's expressed six specific desires: 1) He wasn't concerned about big money, maybe preferring to sign a short-term deal; 2) He wasn't concerned about his role, expressing a willingness to be something less than a "No. 1 receiver'' if necessary; 3) He felt no need to "hurry'' a decision; 4) He wanted to have an opportunity to play against Dallas in 2018; 5) He wanted to join a contender; 6) He wanted to play under a coach who "understands'' him.

Six for six. Nailed. The 7-1 Saints fill every single requirement. Pro Bowler Michael Thomas is the top guy, and there is a vacancy behind him to fill a role like Marques Colston once did for coach Sean Payton, a big guy in the slot. Bryant will be one of the many weapons for a Saints club on seven-game win streak due in large part due to boasting the No. 2 scoring team in the NFL.

Jason Kelce slams Cowboys, calls fans 'fair weather' - Nick Shook,
As we face a tough game and likely loss against the Philadelphia Eagles, we have their center Jason Kelce to remind us just how classy they are.

"I would say mostly I just don't think a lot of players, in particular me, just don't really like the franchise, the organization, what is stands for -- what it's always stood for," Kelce said of the Cowboys during an appearance on 94.1 WIP-FM. "This goes back to the lockout when they were getting replacement players, how outspoken the Dallas Cowboys franchise was in ending that.

"I've just never really appreciated what the organization -- and what its fans really stood for. A lot of fair-weather people from across the country that just kind of fell in love because they're winners instead of having any type of emotional connection to the team whatsoever."

And one more bad (for the Cowboys) thing to look forward to:

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