The Dallas Cowboys depth at the tight end position may have just taken a hit for the start of the season and possibly longer depending on the severity of James Hanna’s knee injury.
On July 29, Hanna complained of knee soreness in his pre-training camp physical and the soreness was initially diagnosed as a bone bruise. He was put on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list, but unfortunately his knee didn’t respond to treatment causing him to leave Oxnard, California and return to Dallas for third opinion and arthroscopic surgery.
Cowboys’ TE James Hanna to undergo knee surgery, sources say. https://t.co/5ZWBjkk56C https://t.co/v8kYed8HRi
The Cowboys placing Hanna on the PUP list gives them some flexibility when it comes down to making final cuts for the 53 man roster. They now have the option of putting him on the reserve/PUP list, which would mean he would miss the first six weeks of the season. If this is indeed what happens, Hanna would be able to return to the field against the Philadelphia Eagles on October 30.
Of course, James Hanna could possibly still be ready for the week one matchup against the New York Giants. It really all depends on the severity of the injury and the recovery time. This of course would be the best case scenario for both Hanna and the Cowboys offense.
The Dallas Cowboys and James Hanna are now in the wait-and-see part of the process in regards to how long he may be out.
This entire situation is concerning considering that James Hanna is the best blocking tight end on the Cowboys roster not named Jason Witten. Hanna’s contributions in the running game is one of the reasons why the Cowboys have been so successful running the ball in recent years, which allows Witten the opportunity to be used more the passing game.
Hanna just signed a three-year $8.25 million contract on March 11, 2016 to return to the Dallas Cowboys.
In his four years with the Dallas Cowboys, James Hanna has caught 33 passes for 286 receiving yards. He started 29 games and is the second tight end behind future Hall of Famer Jason Witten.
Behind him on the depth chart is Gavin Escobar and Geoff Swaim. Swaim is regarded as being a blocking tight end and was doing a good job in training camp at becoming a weapon in the passing game, but he did have two dropped passes against the Los Angeles Rams. Escobar is more of the receiving type of tight end, but is still recovering from a torn Achilles.
So, you can see why it is concerning if James Hanna has to miss a lengthy amount of time.
He is the second best all-around tight end the Dallas Cowboys have on the roster and his absence could be a big blow to the offense.
I don’t know about you but I will be keeping a close eye on what’s going on with James Hanna and pray that he will be a ready to go sooner rather than later.