The Dallas Cowboys continue their preseason this week with joint practices and a game against the Los Angeles Chargers on Saturday night. Mike McCarthy provided updates last night on key players who could be returning to action this week, plus another who may have to miss some time.
McCarthy was optimistic that backup QB candidate Will Grier will be able to return to practice after a minor groin injury suffered last week in Denver. He also confirmed that veteran OT Tyron Smith should be back on the field this week after an ankle issue that cropped up in the practices against the Broncos.
On the other side of things, defensive leader Jayron Kearse will be held out this week with some tightness in his back.
Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy is “hopeful” QB Will Grier (groin) will work Wednesday in first of two joint practices vs. Chargers. LT Tyron Smith (ankle) will also practice. S Jayron Kearse (back) to be rested this week. pic.twitter.com/UCn0S9duX0
Getting Grier back in action is probably the biggest news for Cowboys fans, especially regarding the next preseason game. The poor play from Cooper Rush last Saturday in Denver has only heightened concerns about QB2 and put increased attention on Grier as the potential solution.
Still, any hype around Grier is purely speculative at this point. We've yet to see him throw a pass as a Cowboy in a live game. Hopefully, that changes in Los Angeles.
Getting Tyron Smith back is never a bad thing but still doesn't solve the lingering question about his backup. Josh Ball arguably had the worst night of anyone in Denver and the Cowboys have to start assessing other options fast.
While Jayron Kearse will be missed it does open the door for safety prospects like Donovan Wilson, Israel Mukuamu, and Markquese Bell to get more work against the first-team offense. It will be interesting to track who gets those opportunities this week and in the next game, perhaps indicating where these players currently rank in the coaches' minds.