The Cowboys are marching closer to clinching a playoff spot, division title, and perhaps greater rewards. The Vikings are looking to stay afloat in the NFC North and playoff picture over all. As these two teams face off tonight, here's a quick look at the injury situations for both teams.
The following is based on the teams' final Wednesday practices:
DNP - Did Not Practice
LP - Limited Participant
OUT - Already Ruled Out
- OT Tyron Smith (back/hip) - LP
- OT Chaz Green (back) - OUT
- DE DeMarcus Lawrence (back) - LP
- DE Jack Crawford (foot) - LP
- DT Terrell McClain (thigh) - LP
- LB Justin Durant (hamstring) - OUT
- CB Morris Claiborne (groin) - OUT
- SS Barry Church (forearm) - LP
- SS J.J. Wilcox (thigh) - OUT
The biggest news here is that safety Barry Church will be returning to duty from his broken forearm. It's a timely return as J.J. Wilcox will now be out. With Minnesota always leaning on their passing game for offensive hope, getting Church back is big for the Cowboys' struggling pass defense.
Names like Tyron Smith and DeMarcus Lawrence are going to be here every week with nagging injuries. They have nagging issues which won't keep them out of games but will limit their practice participation likely through the season.
It's unfortunate to be without linebacker Justin Durant for this game. He's primarily been playing in passing situations alongside Sean Lee, so he will be missed as the Vikings look to exploit Dallas through the air.
C Joe Berger (concussion) - OUT
- DT Shariff Floyd (knee) - OUT
- CB Marcus Sherels (rib) - OUT
- CB Mackensie Alexander (groin) - LP
The loss of their starting center is huge for Minnesota. Berger, who had a brief backup role in Dallas from 2006-2007, has started every game since Week 8 of the 2014 season. The Vikings already have the league's worst rushing offense, so this injury hurts a lot.
It's worth mentioning the horrible time that Minnesota's had with offensive tackles. Veterans Matt Kalil, Andre Smith, and Jake Long have all found their way to injured reserve during the year. The Vikings are already surrendering over two sacks per game, which will now be compounded by the loss of Joe Berger. If the Cowboys can't gets sacks against this team, then they never will.
The defensive injuries aren't critical. Shariff Floyd, the former 2013 first-round pick, is still just a backup. Neither of the injured cornerbacks are in the top four of Minnesota's CB depth chart.
REPORT: Dallas Cowboys Re-sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur
L.P. Ladouceur is returning for his 15th season as the Cowboys' long snapper. The veteran free agent was re-signed by Dalals today to a one-year deal.
Thanks to Jason Witten's one-year sabbatical with Monday Night Football, Ladouceur has now been with the Cowboys for more consecutive seasons than any current player. He just turned 38 last week, but Louis-Philippe remains one of the top long snappers in football.
The Cowboys have signed long-snapper L.P. Ladouceur to a one-year deal worth $1.03 million and $90,000 in bonus money, but he will count $735,000 against the cap. This will be Ladouceur's 15th season with the Cowboys, tying Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Mark... https://t.co/2iDsi6RX7e
Retaining Ladouceur is an underrated move for the Cowboys given their situation at kicker.
Brett Maher was only 80% accurate overall on field goals last year. The team could be considering an upgrade in free agency.
Whether they bring Maher back or try someone new, having a long snapper with Ladouceur's performance perfection will make things much easier for them.
REPORT: Cowboys Negotiating Trade with Dolphins for DE Robert Quinn
According to a report just minutes ago, the Dallas Cowboys are visiting with Miami Dolphins' Defensive End Robert Quinn today as part of a possible trade. Miami is looking for a trade partner to try to get something back for Quinn before making him a salary cap casualty.
Quinn is in the final year of his contract and is set to count $12.9 million against the Dolphins' salary cap. Most of that is his base salary of $11.8 million, which Miami is reportedly willing to pay part of to help facilitate a trade.
Robert Quinn was spotted today on his way to visit the #Cowboys, who are in trade talks with the #Dolphins for the veteran DE, sources say. Quinn would need to agree to any deal. So, this is another step in the process, with a Dallas team that obviously needs pass rush.
The Cowboys need DE help with DeMarcus Lawrence's contract still unresolved and Randy Gregory now indefinitely suspended for another drug policy violation. They signed Kerry Hyder from the Lions yesterday, but he isn't a proven commodity like Quinn.
Turning 29 in May, Robert Quinn is a two-time Pro Bowler and former first-round pick of the Rams. He hasn't had the same production in recent years but still had 6.5 sacks for Miami in 2018 and 8.5 the prior year with Los Angeles.
Ever the bargain shoppers these days, Dallas is probably hoping to get Quinn for late-round draft pick or perhaps a pick swap.
REPORT: Police Detain Cowboys DL Tyrone Crawford After Bar Fight
According to TMZ, Tyrone Crawford was involved in a brawl at a bar in Panama City, FL last Friday night. The Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman and team captain was detained by police but apparently was not arrested.
The level of Crawford's involvement has not been substantiated, but TMZ's report does have him shoving police officers at some point in the action. The incident was reportedly captured by surveillance equipment at the bar.
Given that he was not arrested, one could assume that Tyrone was not one of the primary players in the melee. But that doesn't mean the NFL won't still review this matter as it relates to the personal conduct policy, and Cowboys fans know too well how "fair" that process can be.
This is certainly not a story you'd expect to see attached to Tyrone Crawford, who has been a model citizen and leader since entering the league in 2012.
Dallas elected to keep Crawford this season despite solid potential savings. He will count $10.1 million against their 2019 salary cap, which is high for his average production. However, he can play multiple positions and is one of their most experienced players.
Even if Tyrone were to get suspended by the league, it likely wouldn't be more than a one or two-game ban given his record and reputation. It shouldn't change anything about his status with the team.
Dallas Cowboys1 week ago
5 Realistic Free Agents Cowboys Should Sign Before the Draft
NFL Draft5 days ago
Hypothetical La’el Collins Trade Could Recoup Cowboys a 2019 1st-Round Pick
Dallas Cowboys5 days ago
Cowboys Show Interest in Browns DE Emmanuel Ogbah
Player News6 days ago
Chiefs Release Eric Berry, Should Cowboys Be Interested?
Dallas Cowboys2 weeks ago
REPORT: Cowboys Keeping OL Joe Looney, WR Tavon Austin, WR Allen Hurns in 2019
Dallas Cowboys2 weeks ago
Should the Cowboys Use Their 2020 First Round Pick in 2019?
NFL Draft2 weeks ago
7-Round Dallas Cowboys Mock Draft: Post-Combine Edition
Dallas Cowboys5 days ago
BREAKING: Dallas Cowboys Sign DL Christian Covington