The Dallas Cowboys play their most important game of the 2023 season Sunday night against the San Francisco 49ers. Whatever Cowboys talk this week didn't revolve around the game, centered on the Broncos release of Randy Gregory -- or so we thought -- and whether Dallas might kick the tires on bringing him back.
It never felt realistic for myriad reasons, but the 49ers beat everyone to the punch by trading for Gregory before the release was made official.
San Francisco acquired Gregory and a 2024 seventh-round pick from the Broncos for a 2024 sixth-round pick. The trade is indicative of how little Gregory would have cost as a free agent and suggests he would've had multiple suitors.
With the deal occurring a couple days from Sunday night, Gregory won't be active for Cowboys-49ers a couple hours from now.
Cowboys vs 49ers inactives list Week 5: Updates on Randy Gregory, Tyron Smith
It was a fun narrative all week, but Gregory was a long shot to play. 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said Friday that Gregory wouldn't play. He passed his physical, but headed back to Denver to finalize his move to the west coast. He'll report to the team on Monday. It wasn't feasible that Gregory would have been settled in time to suit up, especially given the stakes of the game.
Along with the former Cowboys pass rusher, the 49ers ruled out running back Elijah Mitchell, while second-string center Jon Feliciano is questionable.
Meanwhile, the Cowboys ruled out tight end Peyton Hendershot with an ankle injury and listed linebacker Damone Clark (shoulder) questionable.
TE Peyton Hendershot
CB Eric Scott
OT Asim Richards
WR Jalen Brooks
DL Junior Fehoko
S Israel Mukuamu
Trey Lance (emergency QB)
DE Randy Gregory
RB Elijah Mitchell
OL Nick Zakelj
DL Kalia Davis
LB Jalen Graham
CB Anthony Brown
The Cowboys will have their starting offensive line fully healthy for the first time since the 2021 playoffs.
Tyron Smith is back at left tackle after a two-week absence, Tyler Smith at left guard, Tyler Biadasz at center, Zack Martin at right guard and Terence Steele at right tackle. The latter will lock horns with reigning Defensive Player of the Year Nick Bosa. That is a matchup we'll be watching closely for obvious reasons.