The Dallas Cowboys are preparing for a major Week 17 showdown with the New York Giants as both teams could still win the NFC East. The Cowboys could be getting a major boost toward that goal if All-Pro Offensive Lineman Zack Martin is able to return from injury and play this Sunday.
Martin has missed Dallas’ last four games with a calf injury. He also left early in their Week 6 loss to Arizona and was out for the following game against Washington with a concussion. While the team fell apart without him earlier in the year, the Cowboys are currently riding a three-game win streak.
But even if the makeshift offensive line has stabilized in recent weeks, getting Zack back out there would be a major upgrade whether Dallas uses him at guard or tackle.
Cowboys RG/RT Zack Martin has been sidelined since 11/26 with calf injury. EVP Stephen Jones tells @1053thefan that finale return was best-case scenario. TBD vs. Giants.”We’ll see how he does this week and obviously make a decision that’s in his best interest and our(s).”
While he’s played guard the rest of his NFL career before 2020, Martin has been deployed at right tackle sometimes this season due to injuries to Tyron Smith, La’el Collins, and backup tackle Cam Erving. If he’s back this Sunday then Dallas may use him there again over undrafted rookie and consistently liability Terence Steele.
The Giants’ haven’t had a great pass rush overall this year but DE Leonard WIlliams has posted 8.5 sacks and could be a problem for Steele.
Getting Martin back could also be big for Ezekiel Elliott and the run game. New York is 11th against the run in 2020 and Dallas has mostly struggled there all season, though Zeke did have arguably his best game yesterday against Philadelphia.
Whatever the case, whether it’s at guard over Connor McGovern or replacing Steele at tackle, Zack Martin would be an upgrade for Dallas and 31 other teams if he can play this week. As the Cowboys fight to stay alive in the NFC East race, having perhaps their best overall player return would be a big win going into Sunday.