By Shawn S. Lealos
The Dallas Cowboys injuries continue to grow heading into their Week 8 game with the Detroit Lions. Here is a look at the names list have joined the injury report alongside stars DeMarco Murray and DeMarcus Ware.
First up though, out of the two stars, Murray is the only one who is likely to play this weekend. Owner Jerry Jones likes what he is seeing from Murray in limited practice situations, but wouldn’t comment on whether he would actually play or not. Murray has been working hard on getting back soon, but Dallas is leery about rushing anyone back too soon. Ware, on the other hand, is someone the Cowboys want to take caution with, as rushing back could worsen a problematic rash of injuries. However, Ware wants back on the field and said he will be ready when they call his number.
Morris Claiborne is back on the injury list, which is troubling considering the Cowboys will have to find a way to stop Matthew Stafford’s passing attack. While Brandon Carr will probably cover Calvin Johnson, the Cowboys need their secondary strong to stop his other various weapons in the passing game. Claiborne is not injured, but he is sick and had not practiced this week until Friday.
Dallas will also need to stop Reggie Bush in this game, and while they stopped the best running back in the NFL last week in LeSean McCoy, they have defensive linemen George Selvie (shoulder) and Jason Hatcher (neck) both limited in practice this week, along with Ware. The entire defensive line has been impressive against the run this season, despite various injuries, but they have to heal up soon. Nick Hayden, the player who replaced Jay Ratliff, practiced for the first time this week on Friday.
Dez Bryant joins Miles Austin and Dwayne Harris on the injured list, but all three men should play this week. The biggest story in this game is Dez Bryant and Calvin Johnson, two of the best receivers in the NFL, trying to outmatch each other. Bryant will be out there despite his injuries and Harris will still be playing on special teams coverage. While Austin will play, he has become very unreliable since his latest hamstring injury and Terrance Williams has pretty much replaced him in the starting lineup.
On the Lions side of the ball, starting wide receiver Nate Burleson is still out with his forearm injury, and no one has really stepped up to replace his numbers. While many expected Ryan Broyles to be that man, he has been unimpressive so far in his return from his latest ACL tear. Calvin Johnson is also on the injured list, and just returned to limited practice on Thursday, but he will play this weekend.
Tight end Brandon Pettigrew was also limited in practice this week with a sore hamstring, but the Lions will need him on the field, as he is the only legitimate blocking tight end they have. Fellow offensive lineman, tackle Corey Hilliard, is out with a knee injury. Everyone else on the team practiced in at least a limited fashion.
- Miles Austin – WR – Hamstring
- Dez Bryant – WR – Hamstring/Wrist
- Morris Claiborne – CB
- Lance Dunbar – RB – Hamstring
- Dwayne Harris – WR – Hip
- Jason Hatcher – DT – Neck
- Nick Hayden – DT – Back
- DeVonte Holloman – LB – Neck
- Ronald Leary – G – Knee
- DeMarco Murray – RB – Knee
- George Selvie – DE – Shoulder
- DeMarcus Ware – DE – Thigh
- Nate Burleson – WR – Forearm
- Louis Delmas – S – Knee
- Andre Fluellen – DT – Concussion
- Jason Fox – T – Knee
- Corey Hilliard – T – Knee
- Calvin Johnson – WR – Knee
- Rashean Mathis – CB – Groin
- Ashlee Palmer – LB – Ankle
- Brandon Pettigrew – TE – Hamstring
- Riley Reiff – T – Hamstring
- Theo Riddick – RB – Concussion
For more Cowboys news and updates, visit Cowboys Central.
Shawn S. Lealos is a freelance writer who graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 2000 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism. He writes for a variety of national publications and has over 15 years of sports journalism experience. Follow Shawn on Twitter @sslealos. Examiner.com.