The Dallas Cowboys have wrapped up their sun-soaked stay in California with an eventful training camp. Some questions have been answered, some not so much and some have now been added. Throughout training camp and two preseason games, we've seen some highly anticipated debuts and performances, numerous setbacks for certain players, great position battles and a rash of injuries.
Yet through it all, with the exception of Jason Witten and Miles Austin, the Cowboys have been able to dodge any season-ending gut punches so far. There was even some good news on the injury front, as it appears that Witten will not require surgery for his lacerated spleen.
With two preseason games left and a battle with the defending champions on September 5, the Cowboys are now faced with their first round of decision making concerning their roster. The deadline is August 27 and the magic number is 13. That represents the number of players the Cowboys will have to cut by Monday.
Some of those decisions will be no-brainers, some are probably already reached, but some of them might be tougher than you think. There are always a lot of variables that center around these decisions but the biggest factor in this round might be the injury factor. The Cowboys still need to evaluate numerous players and they still need some depth to get through the rest of the preseason.
Let's take a look at the likely candidates that could face an unfavorable fate come August 27.
Donovan Kemp, WR
Kemp was perceived as nothing more than a camp body with huge odds against making this 53-man roster. Now, with an injured knee and a crowded receiving corps, his time in Dallas is up.
David Little, WR
Unfortunately for Little, there is little to discuss.
Tyrone Novikoff, LT
The Cowboys took a flier on this undrafted tackle, but at this point, he's shown very little and is not in a position to even pass up Jeff Adams on the depth chart.
Javarris Williams, RB
With the emergence of Jamize Olawale in the San Diego game and the return of Lance Dunbar to practice, the Cowboys need to find out more about these two players than Williams. With two preseason games left, that doesn't leave much time.
Shaun Chapas, FB
Chapas missed a few key blocks in the San Diego game and just has not shown much at all. With Vickers as the starter, cutting Chapas will allow the Cowboys to expand Olawale's role even more.
Levy Adcock, RT
The Cowboys would probably go with Pat McQuistan or Jeff Adams if they were to keep a fourth tackle. Another undrafted free agent who just didn't do enough to attract any attention.
Robert Callaway, DT
Callaway hasn't done too much in the preseason thus far, and with the play of Ben Bass, the Cowboys may have found a better and more versatile player along the defensive front.
Delbert Alvarado, K
Let's face it, was he really going to unseat Dan Bailey? Cutting him now might allow him to catch on and push a kicker on another team.
Isaiah Greenhouse, ILB
The Cowboys will go to war with four inside linebackers but Greenhouse will not be one of them. Adrian Hamilton and Alex Albright are versatile enough to provide depth at the position if needed.
Eddie Whitley, FS
With Matt Johnson back in the mix, it will be all about getting him up to speed. For Whitley, this is not good news but that's what happens when you're trying to develop a fourth-round pick.
Teddy Williams, CB/KR
Can we please end this experiment already? Williams has shown next to nothing as a return man and his skills as a cornerback are average at best. Track speed or not, he will have a hard time beating out Mario Butler or even Lionel Smith.
Akwasi Owusu-Ansah, CB
Another experiment that needs to cease and desist immediately. The Cowboys brought him back to add to the cornerback mix but he has clearly shown nothing. He was beaten badly by Vincent Brown and is not playing anywhere near Mario Butler's level.
Daniel Loper, OG
Was brought in for depth when the offensive line began sustaining multiple injuries. He's an adequate player who won't wow you with his ability, but the Cowboys have enough depth to get through the rest of preseason. I was thinking Harland Gunn at this point, but Costa and Kowalski are still hurt.
You probably won't see too many surprises come August 27, but anything is possible. There is probably the expectation that the Cowboys could very well have their eyes on a few roster cuts from other teams. As fast as the Cowboys are saying goodbye to a handful of players, there could be some new faces as well.
That's just the business of the NFL.