The Dallas Cowboys have to match the Philadelphia Eagles this week and then beat them next week in order to make the NFL playoffs, but injuries are threatening to cripple their season. The latest casualty is Terrance Williams, as the Cowboys suffer another hamstring injury.
After missing much of the first half of the season with a hamstring injury, the Dallas Cowboys got Miles Austin back and he is slowly but surely working his way back to full strength. Now that he is back, his replacement, rookie Terrance Williams, has fallen to the same ailment – yet another hamstring injury for the Cowboys.
Take a look at this list. So far in the 2013 NFL season, the following players have suffered hamstring injuries: Sean Lee, Justin Durant, Morris Claiborne, Dwayne Harris, Bruce Carter, Barry Church, Miles Austin, Danny McCray, Lance Dunbar, Dez Bryant, Gavin Escobar and Terrance Williams. This seems ridiculous, but the fact is that there is a problem and the Cowboys strength and conditioning coaches on this team are to blame.
This week, Williams, Harris and Claiborne – all starters – will miss the game thanks to their hamstrings.
Replacing Williams at the third receiver position will be either Cole Beasley on three receiver sets or Gavin Escobar when Dallas is forced to utilize two tight end formations, something that will be a necessity with Harris out as well. Replacing Harris as the key special teams returner will likely be new pickup Michael Spurlock, a wide receiver who is nothing more than a key special team player.
On defense, Orlando Scandrick will continue to sub for Claiborne, who has basically been lost for the entire season.
The Cowboys linebacker corps is also completely decimated. Sean Lee and Ernie Sims will miss another game, with Lee the biggest loss on the entire defense here late in the season. Justin Durant lost his season as well, as Dallas placed him on the IR this week. They also dropped Kyle Bosworth, despite having no depth at the position. Dallas does hope that Bruce Carter will return, and after a full practice on Thursday, that looks likely. He will join DeVonte Holloman and a rotating cast at the third linebacker position.
The Washington Redskins, on the other hand, are almost completely healthy.
The one key injury is starting tight end Jordan Reed, who has been out for almost a full month with concussion symptoms. They will also be without starting quarterback Robert Griffin III, who was shut down for the rest of the season for a mixture of injury problems and poor play. Other than that, there were only three other players on the injured list and all practiced on Thursday.
- Carr, Brandon – CB – Illness
- Carter, Bruce – LB – Hamstring
- Claiborne, Morris – CB – Hamstring
- Harris, Dwayne – WR – Hamstring
- Hatcher, Jason – DT – Neck
- Lee, Sean – LB – Neck
- Selvie, George – DE – Back
- Sims, Ernie – LB – Groin
- Ware, DeMarcus – DE – Back
- Williams, Terrance – WR – Hamstring
- Wynn, Jarius – DE – Chest
- E.J. Biggers – CB – Knee
- Jordan Reed – TE – Concussion
- Trent Williams – T – Knee
- Darrel Young – FB – Hamstring
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.