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Mike McCarthy press conference: Andy Dalton is in concussion protocol

The head coach took to the podium on Monday.

Dallas Cowboys v Washington Football Team Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

The Dallas Cowboys lost yet again on Sunday and there are a lot of people who want answers as to why things are happening the way that they are.

Mike McCarthy took to the podium on Monday to try to begin to make sense of it all.

A reminder that all answers are paraphrases and not exact quotes.

Evaluating what is happening

Mike McCarthy noted that there is an evaluation process that begins on the plane ride back home and that the Cowboys are in the middle of it. He noted that you begin to look at things you can change whether they are in practice and what not. He said nobody feels worse than the team about what is happening and that criticism is warranted.

Andy Dalton is in concussion protocol

Asked for an update on the team’s starting quarterback Mike McCarthy said that Dalton is in the concussion protocol and was in the building on Monday, but noted that he was not in team meetings. He said he would not be getting into the exact details of Dalton’s status.

McCarthy was asked about the report that there would be no suspension for Washington linebacker Jon Bostic. He said he would leave things up to the officiating and noted that the offensive linemen were around and that the entire reaction from it all is kind of a microcosm of where they are.

Battling through adversity

McCarthy noted that the team has been facing a lot of adversity so far on the season and said that it reminded him of his first year as the head coach of the Green Bay Packers. He noted that the Cowboys have to find a way to prevail and that the team is clearly not where it needs to be or wants to be at this point.

Randy Gregory’s usage

The Cowboys got Randy Gregory back this past week and hardly used him which is a point of confusion for most fans. Asked about Gregory’s lack of utilization McCarthy noted simply that it was nice to have him back and left it at that.

Focus for Ben DiNucci

Obviously with Andy Dalton in the concussion protocol the focus could shift to rookie Ben DiNucci. McCarthy was asked if he would spend more time with DiNucci this week and that that it would obviously be natural for him to do so. He said he has a lot of work this week and that it all remains to be seen.

Players set to return

McCarthy noted that fellow rookie Tyler Biadasz will work as the team’s starting center this week which is notable given that Joe Looney is eligible to return. He said that Joe Looney would hopefully practice in a limited basis and that both Sean Lee and Chidobe Awuzie will get to practice this week as well.


Asked whether the Cowboys giving the ball away concerns him more than their inability to take it away McCarthy said they are both obviously bad and go hand in hand. He noted that the priority is to take care of the football if you want to put one in front of the other.

The Cowboys are a work in progress

McCarthy noted that the team is clearly not where it wants to be and that they have faced a number of challenges with different lineup changes.

Michael Gallup’s lack of involvement

We have seen Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb both have had moments in recent weeks, but people are starting to wonder where Michael Gallup is. McCarthy was asked about this and said that changes to the offense have obviously impacted everything. He also cited the attention that Gallup gets but again noted the change to the offensive structure.

CeeDee Lamb’s drops

Sunday was perhaps the worst game of CeeDee’s young career and part of the reason why was the drops that he had. McCarthy noted that obviously this is something that needs to be fixed and said that the Cowboys will continue to work towards that getting better and that he expects Lamb to be productive in the future.

Getting dominated by the run game

Asked about the Cowboys getting manhandled on defense in the run game McCarthy noted that they have simply been unable to stop the run. He left it again at saying that they are clearly not where they need to be.

Dontari Poe

In terms of what the Cowboys are getting out of Dontari Poe the head coach kept it simple in saying that things aren’t good enough on that side of the ball.

Trade deadline coming up

The trade deadline is quickly approaching and Mike McCarthy noted that while that is obviously a thing it is something that he is generally not a part of as the head coach. He noted that Will McClay, Stephen Jones, and Jerry Jones are having conversations about this every day and that this is his first time going through the trade deadline as the head coach of the Cowboys but that his focus is on the players that are with them now.

Can DiNucci start?

Again it might be necessary for the Cowboys to start Ben DiNucci at quarterback on Sunday. Mike McCarthy said that there is work to do there to get ready.

Is there a feeling of having to win out?

The NFC East is bad, but time is running out. Asked if he feels this way Mike McCarthy said that he doesn’t really think about playoffs until a team has 10 wins. He said he understands the talk about the postseason and what not, but that he is about being 1-0 each week and pouring into that. He said that the Cowboys need to focus on self-scouting and doing the things that they want to do in the game.

Zack Martin

The Cowboys were without guard Zack Martin in Washington, but Mike McCarthy did say that he is hopeful that Martin will be able to practice on Wednesday. In terms of whether or not Martin would play more tackle than guard he said they would work on that throughout the week.

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