While nothing is official yet, comments made by Jerry Jones today on local radio suggest that Dallas has already decided what to do with their option to bring a player back from the Injured Reserve list. As was relayed by Jon Machota on Twitter:
Jerry Jones on @1053thefan: Morris Claiborne and La’el Collins “will be dressed and playing in the playoffs.
Guard La’el Collins has been on IR since early October. He suffered an injury to a ligament in his right big toe in Dallas’ Week 3 game against the Chicago Bears.
Dallas has three players eligible to be recalled from IR; Collins, quarterback Kellen Moore, and rookie defensive end Charles Tapper. There was no thought that Moore would come back with Tony Romo and Mark Sanchez already filling out the depth chart.
The only real question was whether it would be Collins or Tapper returning.
Dallas has had their share of issues at defensive end, both with health and performance, but it’s unknown if Tapper is healthy enough or even ready to contribute. A lower back injury prevented him from practicing much or playing at all this year.
If La’el Collins returns, as Jerry Jones suggested, then it will be interesting to see if he gets his starting job back. Dallas has had an incredible 13-2 season and produced the league’s top running back with Ronald Leary in the starting lineup. It is unlikely they will disrupt that chemistry on the offensive line by inserting Collins back in.
The old notion that “you shouldn’t lose your job to injury” went out the window in Dallas with the Dak Prescott and Tony Romo situation. Collins should be a reserve in the playoffs, and he would be a valuable one with experience at both guard and tackle.