Here are five players I believe every Dallas Cowboys fan should watch out for when the team plays the Green Bay Packers on Sunday afternoon.
The 2-2 Dallas Cowboys will face a familiar foe on Sunday afternoon, the 3-1 Green Bay Packers. The last time these two teams met was in the divisional round of the 2016 NFL playoffs. Despite being down early in that contest, the Cowboys battled back late. But it wasn’t enough as Dallas suffered what was only their fourth defeat of the entire season.
Looking for a little revenge, the Cowboys enter this contest still trying to figure things out on both sides of the ball. Running back Ezekiel Elliott and Dallas’ offensive line have struggled to rekindle the magic that helped the team obtain a 13-3 record in 2016.
And the brilliance of their defensive line play has only balanced out the inexperience and injuries along both Dallas’ linebacker corps and in it’s secondary.
The Cowboys are still trying to recover from their massive free agency losses this offseason. Gone are veterans like cornerbacks Brandon Carr and Morris Claiborne. They’ve been replaced by second-year pro Anthony Brown and rookie Jourdan Lewis. Special teams ace Jeff Heath now occupies the starting safety spot that used to belong to Barry Church.
Along their offensive line, La’el Collins now starts at right tackle after veteran Doug Free retired earlier this year. And the exodus of starting right guard Ronald Leary to the Denver Broncos this offseason has left a gaping hole in which both Chaz Green and Jonathan Cooper have tried to fill.
On top of those holes perforating Dallas’ roster, injuries have also began to plague America’s Team. The biggest being linebacker Sean Lee (hamstring), who was sorely missed in last week’s surprising loss to the Los Angeles Rams. With the return of veteran linebacker Anthony Hitchens this week and with a bye week to follow, it’s questionable whether Lee will make his return against Green Bay.
Injuries to players like rookie Chidobe Awuzie (hamstring), cornerback Nolan Carroll (concussion), left tackle Tyron Smith (back), Chaz Green (hip), defensive end Charles Tapper (foot) and others have also hurt the Cowboys through their first four games of the young season.
On Sunday, the Cowboys will enter into a Week Five matchup against a battle-hardened Packers team. The contest should be a great barometer of where Dallas stands right now, despite their inexperience and injuries. And I believe there are five players worth watching carefully in this game.