Who the Dallas Cowboys should rest in Week 17

ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 13: Tyron Smith No. 77 of the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on September 13, 2015 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 13: Tyron Smith No. 77 of the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on September 13, 2015 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

With the playoffs now officially out of reach, and one more game to play, which players should the Dallas Cowboys opt to rest in Week 17?

After the Dallas Cowboys lost to the Seattle Seahawks Sunday afternoon, they were mathematically eliminated from playoff contention. With the final game of the 2017 season against the Philadelphia Eagles this Sunday, the Cowboys have some tough decisions to make on whether to play some of their starters or rest them.

Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett always preaches a motto of fight to his team. Fight till the last second as hard as you can. While this is a great message, it does not make sense to follow this mantra in a meaningless Week 17 game. I believe the Cowboys should rest their big stars this week, and not play them at all against Philly this Sunday.

The first player that seems like an obvious not to play is Tyron Smith. The Cowboys Pro Bowl left tackle has been battling back, groin, and knee injuries all year. After only being able to play in one possession against Seattle before leaving the game, there is absolutely no reason to push Smith back and get him ready to play Sunday.

Another fairly obvious choice to not play would be linebacker Sean Lee. Since returning from his hamstring injury, the Cowboys defensive leader has played at an All-Pro level. Lee has been battling a back injury of late, and there is still a chance his hamstring is not back to 100%. Being a fairly injury prone player, he should be another easy call to not play in Sunday’s finale.

Cornerback Orlando Scandrick and right tackle La’el Collins both seem like easy outs this week as well. Scandrick has been dealing with a break in his back, which has kept him out since Week 13. And Collins has not been able to practice for weeks dealing with a back injury of his own.

After Scandrick, Lee, and Smith you get to the tough calls. Running back Ezekiel Elliott looked very fresh after returning from his suspension last week, but with how common injuries are at the running back position in the NFL, it makes no sense to play Elliott this week.

Quarterback Dak Prescott is another guy I would hold out this week. Dak took a beating against Seattle, which has been a common theme for him down the stretch of this season. Prescott also has not looked very sharp in his last two games, so shutting him down for the season and ending a rough year maybe what’s best for the Cowboys and their second year quarterback.

The final player I would sit out Sunday for the Cowboys is wide receiver Dez Bryant. It is safe to say this has been a disaster of a year for Bryant. Dropped passes and a lack of rapport in the passing game with Prescott, has lead to an awful year for the former Pro Bowl receiver. In the best interest of Dez and the team, it would be better to just shut him down, and try to regroup and bounce back in 2018.

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Although it has not been there mantra in the past, it would be smart for the Dallas Cowboys to shut down these players this Sunday, and try to move on from a disappointing year, and look forward to 2018.