The Dallas Cowboys are 0-1 on the season and have a lot of work to do on the defensive side of the ball. Sunday night saw the Los Angeles Rams have their way with the Cowboys defense until late in the game; the first punt for the Rams did not come until the final seconds of the third quarter. Dallas clearly wasn’t ready in this capacity, but it didn’t help them that Leighton Vander Esch left the game early on.
Vander Esch lost much of last year to injury, but many were hopeful that he could rebound in that regard in 2020. Unfortunately, we now know that he is likely going to miss about half the season (at least) for the team.
Leighton Vander Esch cleanly broke his collarbone, expected to miss 6-8 weeks
It was reported on the NBC broadcast that the Cowboys were looking into Leighton Vander Esch’s collarbone while examining him. Vander Esch broke it, although it was a clean break, and he is expected to miss 6-8 weeks while he heals.
#Cowboys LB Leighton Vander Esch cleanly broke his collarbone, source said after his CT scan. He’ll have surgery and return to action in 6-8 weeks.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 14, 2020
The Cowboys didn’t exactly get great linebacker play after Vander Esch left as Jaylon Smith struggled mightily throughout the contest. Joe Thomas filled in for Vander Esch the rest of the game. Luke Gifford remains an option as far as depth is concerned, as does practice squad member Francis Bernard, Sean Lee will be eligible to return for Week 4 as he is currently on injured reserve.
Vander Esch was one of two starters that the Cowboys will be without for some time as they could be missing tight end Blake Jarwin for a while. The initial fear is that Jarwin suffered a torn ACL.
Dallas will obviously be without Vander Esch for most of, if not all of, the next eight weeks:
- Atlanta Falcons
- at Seattle Seahawks
- Cleveland Browns
- New York Giants
- Arizona Cardinals
- at Washington Football Team
- Philadelphia Eagles
- Pittsburgh Steelers
For what it’s worth, Leighton Vander Esch is eligible for a contract extension next year and as a 2018 first-round pick the team will have to decide over the offseason whether or not they want to pick up his fifth-year option.
Blake Jarwin will have surgery to have his ACL repaired, Cam Erving could miss a few weeks with a sprained MCL
Concerning Blake Jarwin, there was obviously the initial report that he tore his ACL. Stephen Jones appeared on 105.3 The Fan on Monday around lunchtime and said that Blake Jarwin will need to have his ACL repaired and that “we all know what that means.” What a tough break for Jarwin.
Stephen added that the Cowboys “will see what’s out there” at tight end but that the team has Dalton Schultz, Blake Bell, and Sean McKeon to work with.
It’s been confirmed Blake Jarwin is out for the year with a torn ACL a source said.— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) September 14, 2020
What’s more is that while Stephen was on the air a report surfaced from ESPN’s Todd Archer concerning offensive tackle Cam Erving. Terence Steele started over Erving at right tackle, but Erving nonetheless sustained an injury on special teams.
Backup offensive tackle Cameron Erving suffered a sprained medial collateral ligament in his left knee and could miss a few weeks, according to a source. The injury occurred blocking on a FG. Undrafted rookie Terence Steele started at right tackle.— Todd Archer (@toddarcher) September 14, 2020
The Cowboys already have La’el Collins on injured reserve so they will be without him for at least the next two weeks. Injuries are mounting for the team and it is only Week 2.