Cowboys' Michael Gallup: Week 1 'Not a Reasonable Possibility' for ACL Injury Return

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIJuly 28, 2022

ARLINGTON, TEXAS - DECEMBER 26: Michael Gallup #13 of the Dallas Cowboys gets set against the Washington Football Team during an NFL game at AT&T Stadium on December 26, 2021 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Michael Gallup, who is working his way back from a torn ACL suffered last January, told reporters that it doesn't appear he'll be ready for his team's Week 1 matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 11.

Michael Gehlken @GehlkenNFL

Cowboys WR Michael Gallup on playing Week 1: “It’s not a reasonable possibility.”

Jon Machota @jonmachota

Cowboys WR Michael Gallup (knee) isn’t sure when he’ll be ready to return. He said playing Week 1 is not a realistic possibility. “We got a little ways to go. It’s gotta get a little bit stronger. … I’m ready to get back out there and help the team win.” <a href="https://t.co/ofkK4GO1cP">pic.twitter.com/ofkK4GO1cP</a>

Gallup, a four-year NFL veteran, caught 35 passes for 445 yards and two touchdowns in nine games last season. A calf injury landed him on injured reserve in September. He sat for two months before returning in November.

Unfortunately, Gallup was lost for the year after tearing his ACL on Jan. 2 while catching a touchdown pass against the Arizona Cardinals. He had surgery in early February.

After the season, Gallup signed a five-year, $62.5 million contract to remain with the Cowboys.

The question now is when Gallup will return, but good news has emerged on his progress. Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy provided an encouraging report on Wednesday:

Michael Gehlken @GehlkenNFL

Cowboys WR Michael Gallup “has not missed a target yet,” coach Mike McCarthy said, in his rehabilitation from February ACL surgery. “He hasn’t had a setback.” In the “fourth quarter” of his rehab. “He looks really good.” McCarthy gave no timeline on return.

ESPN's Todd Archer reported in June that Gallup should be good to go "sometime in September."

The Cowboys' Week 1 wide receiver depth chart this year will be far different than last season's version.

Gallup, who is currently on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list, figures to be out.

Amari Cooper (traded to Cleveland Browns) and Cedrick Wilson (signed with Miami Dolphins in free agency) are out of town. CeeDee Lamb will be the unquestioned No. 1 wideout now.

Free-agent signee James Washington and rookie Jalen Tolbert should see action early and often alongside Noah Brown, who had 16 receptions and 184 yards as the team's WR5 last year.

Jon Machota of The Athletic reported July 13 that Tolbert is expected to start Week 1. The former South Alabama star, who went 88th overall in this year's draft, caught 82 passes for 1,474 yards and eight scores last season.