Dallas Cowboys News: Latest Injury Buzz on Jason Witten, Dez Bryant & More
With opening night for the Dallas Cowboys now less than three weeks away, the injury bug that's flying around training camp couldn't come at a worse possible time.
Hopes are once again high in Dallas this season after a disappointing 8-8 finish in 2011-12, making it vital that the team comes out on fire and stays hot in the uber-competitive NFC East.
Unfortunately, the team isn't exactly off to a meteoric start to the preseason.The Cowboys opened against the Oakland Raiders with a 3-0 victory that saw the first-team offense look mostly anemic, with the second-team not looking much better. Dallas' offense had just 11 first downs and 202 total yards from scrimmage.
Though the team has three more preseason games to work out the kinks, news of a major injury hitting the wire leaves the Dallas offense in a precarious position come Sept. 5.
With that in mind, here is the latest injury buzz from Cowboys training camp:
Jason Witten Out for at Least Remainder of Preseason with Spleen Injury
Early in the first quarter of the Cowboys' ugly preseason victory over the Raiders, tight end Jason Witten took a vicious shot from Raiders linebacker Rolando McClain that sent the Dallas fanbase into a tizzy.
When Witten returned for the offense's next series, all was thought to be right with the world.
Unfortunately for the Cowboys, that's not the case.
According to a report from ProFootballTalk.com, McClain's hit will put the 30-year-old Witten down for at least the team's last three preseason games.
A source with knowledge of the situation tells PFT that Witten indeed suffered a spleen injury, which resulted in internal bleeding. Per the source, Witten will miss the rest of the preseason.
At this time, it’s not believed that surgery will be required. But it hasn’t completely been ruled out.
ESPN.com's Ed Werder later corroborated the initial report, tweeting that Witten's spleen is not believed to be ruptured and that the current timetable for return is 2-3 weeks.
Obviously, if Witten's injury lasts into the regular season it would be a catastrophic blow to the offense. Witten has long been quarterback Tony Romo's security blanket and his 79 receptions and 942 receiving yards both led the team last season.
With rookies John Hanna and Andrew Szczerba as the Cowboys' only healthy tight ends after backup John Phillips already sidelined with an ankle injury (via DallasCowboys.com), Jerry Jones may need to start working the free-agent pool for an adequate replacement.
Dez Bryant's Hamstring Injury? Not a Big Deal
It's not all melancholy coming out of Cowboys training camp as wide receiver Dez Bryant played and looked great in Dallas' preseason opener against Oakland.
The third-year receiver caught just one pass for 23 yards against the Raiders, but showed no signs of struggle after leaving Saturday's practice early with a hamstring injury.
And, according to head coach Jason Garrett, it should be full-steam ahead from here on out for Bryant.
Via ESPN Dallas' Calvin Watkins:
He seemed to be fine. He moved around; no concern about him prior to the game. We were just going to see how he felt, and he felt pretty good and he looked pretty good on that long play. He made a nice play over his head.
With Witten's status up in the air and fellow wideout Miles Austin also struggling with a hamstring injury, the Cowboys' early-season air attack may be solely dependent on a healthy Bryant. His 63 catches and 928 yards were second to Witten last season, but the team also lost Austin's replacement from last year, Laurent Robinson, to the Jacksonville Jaguars in free agency.
For Bryant, the dearth of depth may force him to finally step into the superstar limelight so many feel he's destined to take.
Kyle Wilber Out at Least Four Weeks With Thumb Injury
The rash of injuries plaguing fourth-round draft pick Kyle Wilber continues as Todd Archer of ESPN Dallas is reporting that the outside linebacker will need surgery on his broken thumb and will miss at least four weeks.
The Wake Forest product missed almost all the Cowboys' offseason training program with an index finger injury, but had played well as a special teams specialist throughout training camp.
But with Dallas stacked at outside linebacker and Wilber's injury almost surely keeping him out of the team's regular season opener against the New York Giants, you have to wonder whether this will be the final straw in Wilber's chances to make the final 53-man roster.
What is the duplicate article?
Why is this article offensive?
Where is this article plagiarized from?
Why is this article poorly edited?