With DeMarcus Lawrence breaking his foot this week, the Cowboys have problems at defensive end. The issue is compounded by Randy Gregory having COVID. Since Lawrence’s injury there has been discussion about using either Micah Parsons or Jaylon Smith in some role at defensive end.
If we are to believe the sources from this NFL.com article, the Cowboys are essentially shifting Parsons to a defensive end role.
The talented tackler from Penn State will essentially move to defensive end, sources say, beginning with Dallas’ game against the Los Angeles Chargers.
If Parsons is going to take a large role at defensive end, then the linebacker rotation will also have to shift.
With Parsons making a move, Leighton Vander Esch should stay on the field in all packages along with Keanu Neal, which is another added benefit of the Parsons shift. Neal may play added safety snaps this week, paving the way for more Jaylon Smith snaps. Some tinkering for sure, but Dallas’ D is confident it can perform.
We’ll have to see how much Parsons plays on the line. It is certainly something he is used to being a former defensive end in high school and a pass-rush specialist at Penn State.
In other news, La’el Collins’ representation is stepping up the challenge to his five-game suspension. They say that Collins has excused absences.
One missed test came in November on the day that Cowboys strength and conditioning coach Markus Paul died and the organization sent all its players home to allow them to grieve.
Another missed test came on the day of Collins’ uncle’s funeral in Arizona, according to a source. The Cowboys gave Collins permission to leave Dallas and tend to his family, the source told ESPN.
A third missed test came on the day Collins underwent hip surgery in October. The league counted a positive test for codeine against him, but Collins was prescribed the drug after having the surgery.
It hard to fathom the NFL not considering those things as excused absences. This goes back to something we mentioned before, how has this not been handled previous to now? How do we get to a point where Collins will actually miss a game if these are true facts about his absences? The NFL needs to fix this process.