Terence Newman is hurt…again. It’s a groin strain and it sounds like it is probably relatively severe. If it weren’t, the Cowboys would list him as day to day, but, since they’re saying it’s at least a four week long injury, it’s a safe bet that T-New did a number on himself.
The best thing the Cowboys and Newman can do is to give this thing time. There is no sense in having him come back too early and playing at 75% as he battles his groin for the rest of the year. I’d rather him miss the first two or three weeks of the season and come back healthy.
In the meantime, somebody needs to step up. The Cowboys must get better at fighting through injuries. Anyone could have seen this one coming from a mile away. And, it’s time for Orlando Scandrick to decide if he wants to take the next step. Since joining the ‘Boys, Scandrick has shown some flashes, but, like the rest of the team, he’s been inconsistent. However, he wants to be a starter and he will definitely get that opportunity now with Newman hurting. Jason Garrett has said that he doesn’t believe in the theory that an injured starter can’t lose his job.
With Newman out, the Cowboys face a big problem in nickel downs. It’s been indicated that when they go nickel, Scandrick will slide inside to the slot. That means either Alan Ball, Bryan McCann, Mario Butler, or a rookie draft pick will have to play the other corner spot. Obviously, that group doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence. But, if the Cowboys want to truly be contenders this year, they’ll have to find a way to get the most out of whoever they use out there. That’s what good teams do.
One sure way for the Cowboys to improve their secondary is to get a better pass rush going. Obviously, in a 3-4 defense, success against the pass is predicated upon a successful pass rush and the Cowboys rarely got home last year. Hopefully, they will make a major improvement in that department under Ryan.
Newman’s injury is disconcerting. However, it’s not time to panic yet. Let’s see what this defense looks like under Rob Ryan. Maybe things aren’t as dire as previously thought.
What are your thoughts? Are the Cowboys screwed even though they’re only one week into training camp?