From the moment that it was reported that All-Pro guard Zack Martin had tested positive for COVID-19 this past weekend, it seemed inevitable that he would miss the season opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday night. The Dallas Cowboys were reluctant to rule him out, with both Stephen and Jerry Jones holding out hope that he could test negative twice in a 24-hour period and then play in the game. Admittedly, that was a very slim hope. It looks like now all that hope is gone.
Sources have revealed that Martin won’t be able to play.
Cowboys RG Zack Martin won’t play Thursday evening at Buccaneers, source said. Team held out hope, willing to fly him to Tampa on private jet Thursday. But his recovery from COVID-19 hasn’t reached that stage. Week 2 game at Chargers a realistic target.— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) September 8, 2021
Connor McGovern to start.
Most everyone had already prepared for this outcome. Coach Mike McCarthy was already talking in terms of Connor McGovern having to play on Thursday. The third-year player will have to step in and try to hold down the fort in Martin’s absence. McGovern has steadily improved his play since he was drafted by the Cowboys, so much so that teams were reportedly trying to trade for him during training camp.
He’ll have a tough task ahead against the Bucs defensive line.
We put together our preview for the game on the Blogging The Boys YouTube Channel (subscribe right here) and discussed how Martin being out will impact things among a variety of other topics.