By Shawn Lealos
The Dallas Cowboys play the New York Giants on Sunday Night Football and have a chance to clinch both the NFC East and possibly a first round bye. This is also an opportunity for Dallas to avenge their only loss of the season, which came in the first week against the New York Giants. Here is a look at the Dallas Cowboys team headlines for this week.READ MORE: Motorcyclist Killed In Arlington Crash Wasn't Wearing A Helmet
Randy Gregory Almost Ready To Return
When the 2016 NFL season started, there were a number of starting defensive players that were suspended, including Rolando McClain, Randy Gregory and DeMarcus Lawrence. Lawrence came back in Week 5 and has been solid in his return, with one sack, a forced fumble, and three tackles for a loss. McClain is finished in Dallas and may never play in the NFL again. Gregory is currently slated to return to the active roster on Dec. 19.
The Cowboys expected Gregory back at practice on Wednesday after a 10-game suspension for repeated failed drug tests. But, the NFL barred his return to practice this week, and there is a chance that Gregory failed another test and might face a one-year ban. Dallas said they have not received word of that and hope to have him back on the field on Dec. 26 against the Detroit Lions.
“We’ve had different information on that over the last couple of days, over the last couple of weeks,” Jason Garrett told ESPN. “Again we’re just focused on our guys. He’s not going to practice today.”READ MORE: Arlington Father Shawn Andrew Kuhleman 1 Of 2 Killed In Chemical Incident At Plant Near Houston
Dallas Cowboys Closing In On Home Field Advantage
Last week, when the Dallas Cowboys beat the Minnesota Vikings, they had a chance to become the first team to clinch an NFL playoff spot. They needed help, and when the Washington Redskins lost on Sunday, the Cowboys got that coveted playoff spot. The next step is to secure the NFC East and then pick up a first round bye…and then finally wrap up home field advantage. All Dallas needs to do to win the NFC East is to defeat the New York Giants.
For the first round bye, the competition after that includes the Detroit Lions and Seattle Seahawks. If the Chicago Bears beat the Detroit Lions or the two teams tie, Dallas will get the first round bye. As a matter of fact, if the Lions lose just one more game this season, Dallas gets a first-round bye with a win, and the two teams play on Dec. 26.
Finally, there is home field advantage in the playoffs. If the Cowboys win another game this season—with their first chance against the New York Giants on Sunday—and the Seattle Seahawks and Detroit Lions each lose one game before the end of the season, Dallas gets home field advantage throughout the playoffs.
Will the Dallas Cowboys Have the Rookie of the Year?MORE NEWS: Kaufman County Deputy On Administrative Leave Pending Investigation Into Handling Of Troubled Teen
When voting on the awards, there is always a chance that two players from the same team might cancel each other out. This year, the two leaders on the offensive side of the ball for NFL Rookie of the Year play for the Dallas Cowboys. Ezekiel Elliott leads the NFL in rushing with 1,234 yards and 11 touchdowns. Dak Prescott is the quarterback for a team that sits at 11-1 and is in third place in the NFL in QB rating at 108.6. He has thrown 19 touchdowns and only two interceptions. ESPN speculates that this could be the first time two teammates share the Rookie of the Year honors.