The Dallas Cowboys got a double dose of bad news following their season-opening loss to Tampa Bay on Thursday night.
The ‘Boys have lost right tackle La’el Collins to a five-week suspension and wide receiver Michael Gallup for three to five weeks with a calf injury.
Collins will be off the Dallas active roster until October 18, courtesy of his suspension for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy. It reportedly stems from missing drugs tests.
It is a real blow for a Cowboys offensive line which was decimated by injury in 2020 as the team slumped to a 6-10 record. Collins himself missed the entire season with a hip injury.
Dallas had already received bad news up front even before Thursday night’s kickoff, with superstar right guard Zack Martin being ruled out after testing positive for COVID-19.
The Gallup injury meanwhile is a blow to a high-powered pass offense which again looked good in that agonising 31-29 loss to the Super Bowl champion Bucs.
Gallup looked terrific in the early going with four catches for 36 yards before leaving the game with the injury. He is expected to be back in early October.
Dallas still has a stellar receiving corps with Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb both going over 100 receiving yards in Tampa. But the loss of the explosive Gallup makes it easier for defensive co-ordinators to slow the Dak Prescott-led aerial attack.
The biggest bright spot for Dallas on Thursday night was the performance of Prescott himself. He was exceptional as he duelled Tom Brady, throwing for 402 yards and three scores coming off that injury-ruined 2020 season.