The Dallas Cowboys are getting their best cornerback, Morris Claiborne, back on the field, and it could not have come at a more perfect time.
He was playing the best football of his life when he went down with a groin injury against the Philadelphia Eagles on October 30th. As his luck seems to have gone since he was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys, as soon as cornerback Morris Claiborne‘s game arrived, he was lost for the remainder of the regular season.
It was an injury that was supposed to crush Dallas’ defense because Claiborne was finally living up to his lofty draft status. The veteran was leading the way in the secondary, helping a maligned unit to a surprisingly solid start to the year. With five pass breakups and one interception through six games, Claiborne was playing with the confidence and swagger he hadn’t shown much of as a pro.
Thankfully for the Cowboys, Claiborne appears set to return in the Divisional Round of the playoffs and it could not have come at a better time. The Green Bay Packers are riding into town with the hottest quarterback in the league, Aaron Rodgers. Even if wide receiver Jordy Nelson doesn’t play, Rodgers has plenty of options to challenge the secondary of the Cowboys.
That’s why getting Claiborne back is so important. Dallas has been playing with three good corners for most of the year, along with Claiborne they have talented rookie Anthony Brown, Brandon Carr and Orlando Scandrick, but they haven’t all played together since week two, when Brown wasn’t seeing many snaps. Now that all four are healthy and ready to go, the Cowboys should be able to match-up with Rodgers’ weapons in the passing game.
They’ll need all four to go toe-to-toe with Davante Adams, Randall Cobb, Ty Montgomery, Geronimo Allison, and possibly Nelson, who are set to catch anything Rodgers throws. It’s going to be a tough match-up with Morris Claiborne in the lineup, but it would’ve been a much tougher one without him.
Getting Morris Claiborne back comes at a critical time for the Dallas Cowboys; they are preparing to play the most dangerous passer in the NFL right now. Claiborne was the best cornerback on the roster when he went down with his groin injury and his return is a big boost to the Cowboys’ passing defense.
Not only will Claiborne’s appearance help this weekend, it would do wonders to get him back into football shape for the Atlanta Falcons, or any other explosive passing team Dallas may play in the future. Hopefully, the Cowboys will get to cross that bridge.
For now, though, the Cowboys are getting healthier, and Claiborne’s return comes at a position that could use his help. You can never have enough defensive backs, especially against Aaron Rodgers.
You can chat with or follow Ben on twitter @BenGrimaldi