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Cowboys at 49ers Next Week in Playoffs? Here's How

Cowboy Maven on FanNation 1/15/2023 Cowboys Country Staff

Updated by the minute, our Cowboys NFL Moves, Free Agency and Trade Tracker: News and views on the roster-building effort

JAN 14 NINERS ADVANCE The Seattle Seahawks shattered expectations this season, and they gave it their best shot to do it again against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Wild Card on Saturday at Levi's Stadium.

But the only thing that was shattered in the 41-23 season-ending loss to the Niners was the Seahawks' hopes of securing a massive postseason upset over their divisional rival.

Seattle got a solid performance from quarterback Geno Smith, who went 25 of 35 passing for 253 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. He found a connection with receiver DK Metcalf, who finished with 10 catches for 136 yards and two scores. But none of it was enough to counter a big day from Niners running back Christian McCaffrey (15 carries for 119 yards with a receiving score) and rookie quarterback Brock Purdy (18 of 30 for 332 yards and three touchdowns). San Francisco receiver Deebo Samuel (six grabs for 133 yards and a touchdown) was also central to the win.

The Niners will be at home next week, and depending on how the rest of the weekend turns out the Cowboys could be at San Francisco. Dallas, the No. 5 seed, needs to win at Tampa Bay on Monday, of course. And the Giants would have to win at Minnesota. New York, the No. 6 seed, would then play at No. 1 Philly, leaving Dallas at the Niners.

That would of course be a rematch of last season's playoff opener - in which the Niners defeated Dallas at AT&T Stadium.

JAN 14 SEAHAWKS UPSET? Nothing against the Seattle Seahawks - they belong in the playoffs, no matter the weird Adam Schefter-mouthpiece campaign about "the worst refs ever!'' ... indeed, they're proving they belong as at halftime at San Francisco, they are hanging with the heavily-favored 49ers, holding a 17-16 lead.

But yes, the Dallas Cowboys are watching. And hoping.

The Cowboys are the No. 5 seed in the NFC playoffs. They must of course take care of their own business by winning at Tampa on Monday. But on Saturday? They are watching, knowing that lower-seed wins (Seattle is No. 6) increases the possibility of a Dallas home game later ...

Not to mention the potential elimination of a more concerning foe.

No offense, Seahawks. Continued success in the second half!

JAN 13 THREE ALL-PROS Micah Parsons and Zack Martin have been selected as first-team AP All-Pros this season, with receiver CeeDee Lamb named a second-team All-Pro.

Martin has now been a first-team All-Pro and six times and has been on the All-Pro team every year of his career except for 2020 when he was injured.

Parsons has been a first-team All-Pro in both of his first two seasons.

This marks Lamb’s first All-Pro honor.

JAN 11 DAMAR CATCHING ON Does anybody in sports understand the power of marketing better than the "America's Team'' Dallas Cowboys?

Maybe not.

But Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin sure gets it.

Hamlin was officially released from Buffalo General Medical Center on Wednesday, as he continues on the road to recovery just nine days after suffering from cardiac arrest in a game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Jan. 2.

But as Hamlin begins to rehab, he's also looking to secure ownership over a few of the phrases that became famous across the country as he began to recover.

Hamlin is applying for two trademarks on the phrases "Did We Win" and "Three is Back," per reports Wednesday from TMZ Sports.

He also plans to use these phrases for "motivational and educational speakers in the field of self- and personal improvement" and "health care services in the nature of athletic training."

Hamlin's "Did We Win?"phrase was reported as being one of the first things he asked in writing one he woke up in the days following his cardiac arrest.

"Yes Damar, you won," Dr. Timothy Pritts said. "You won the game of life."

And now that he's getting healthier? Hamlin looks to keep winning.

JAN 9 2023 SCHEDULE Home: The next thing the Dallas Cowboys need to do in 2023 is play at Tampa Bay in the Wild Card round of the NFL playoffs.

But then, in the actual 2023 season? We've got the opponents lined up. to wit ...

HOME - Rams, Seahawks, Patriots, Jets, Eagles, Giants, Commanders, Lions.

AWAY - Cardinals, Bills, Panthers, Chargers, Dolphins, 49ers, Eagles, Giants, Commanders.

The two jump-out points: Dallas at Buffalo and Dallas at San Francisco is marquee-matchup stuff.

JAN 7 RHODES TO DALLAS The Cowboys' search for help at cornerback continues.

The Cowboys are signing veteran cornerback Xavier Rhodes to their practice squad, per NFL Network.

Rhodes was waived by the Bills this week after signing on with Buffalo following a solid career with the Colts for the former first-rounder.

Rhodes, a three-time Pro Bowler and 2017 First-Team All-Pro selection, signed with the Bills practice squad on Sept. 28 before being activated to the 53-man roster on Nov. 26. The 32-year-old recorded statistics in two games this season, as he had two total tackles in the 31-23 win over the Cleveland Browns in Detroit on Nov. 20 before totaling two more tackles in the 24-10 Thursday night win over the New England Patriots in Foxboro.

Before joining the Bills, Rhodes played seven seasons with the Minnesota Vikings and two seasons with the Indianapolis Colts after being the No. 25 overall pick out of Florida State in 2013.

Rhodes will begin on the Dallas p-squad with a chance to jump up as the team progresses toward the postseason. The Cowboys are using youngsters DaRon Bland and Nahshon Wright at the corners opposite Trevon Diggs, with a relative vet newcomer Trayvon Mullen, the Raiders-ex, possibly in the mix on Sunday at Washington.

JAN 6 HURTS 'TRENDING' Looks like we might expect Jalen Hurts back in the Philadelphia Eagles' starting lineup this weekend as they play to hang onto the No. 1 seed in the NFC ... with the Cowboys still giving chase.

Hurts has missed the last two games with a bum shoulder, but the Eagles need to beat the New York Giants at home on Sunday to wrap up the NFC East and the No. 1 seed in the playoffs. Should they lose, with Dallas winning?

The Cowboys jump up.

Philadelphia head coach Nick Sirianni didn't flat out say today that Hurts will start this weekend, but he continued to say things are looking up.

Gardner Minshew started the last two games for the Eagles, back-to-back losses to the Dallas Cowboys and New Orleans Saints.

The Giants, meanwhile, are locked into the No. 6 playoff seed with no real incentive to risk injuries, so key starters might sit.

That game starts at 3:25 p.m. CT time on Sunday, as does Cowboys at Washington, where Dallas plans to play to win ... just in case.

JAN 2 TONY POLLARD BACK Cowboys running back Tony Pollard, who missed the win at the Titans with his thigh injury, will practice on Wednesday, coach Mike McCarthy said on Monday as the team preps for the regular-season finale at Washington.

Pollard, a first-time Pro Bowler, is 12 yards shy of his first 1,000-yard season as he shares backfield dues for the playoff-bound Cowboys with Ezekiel Elliott.

The Cowboys will not have Leighton Vander Esch available this week, but the Cowboys is talking about a three-starter "Welcome Back'' for the playoffs. Read more here.

JAN 1 SCARY SCENE were The Eagles are experiencing problems at home today in their Week 17 matchup against the New Orleans Saints ... with a Josh Sweat injury a primary concern.

Sweat, who has 11 sacks so far this season, was carried off the field against the Saints on Sunday in what is being described as a "scary scene.''

The cart came out for Sweat and he was placed on a stretcher and has been taken to the hospital. The team says he has "movement in all extremities."

Meanwhile, the favored Eagles trail 13-0 as halftime approaches.

JAN 1 HURTS OUT The Dallas Cowboys did what they had to do Thursday night, as the 27-13 win over the Tennessee Titans kept their hopes alive for the NFC East title and maybe conference’s top playoff seed.

Today? More hope.

The Cowboys (12-4) realize they need help, beginning with the New Orleans Saints upsetting the Philadelphia Eagles (13-2) on Sunday - and now we know that QB Jalen Hurts (shoulder) will sit this one out.

Should it happen that Philly loses here, then the final week of the regular season in the NFC East will be a doozy.

“This is what the league wanted with putting the division games at the end and I think it’s awesome,” Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said. “You look around the league and I’m looking forward to watching football this weekend ... so this is the way it’s supposed to be.

“We’ve just got to keep playing. The biggest thing – and obviously we want the Saints to win – is we want to line up and play for as much as we possibly can when we line up in Washington. I think that’ll be the best situation for us.”

The Eagles finish against the New York Giants, who are battling for a Wild Card spot. The Commanders also have designs on the playoffs. Should the Cowboys win at Washington and the Eagles fall in their last two, Dallas would win the division and at least host a first-round playoff game.

But if Philly clinches this week? Yes, Dallas will consider resting guys at Washington.

Conceded McCarthy: "I think I should probably answer that (question on) Monday for you.”

DEC 31 COWBOYS WATCHING Saints at Eagles matters to the Dallas Cowboys in Week 17 ... and the status of Alvin Kamara and Jalen Hurts are therefore worth watching as well.

Hurts is listed as "doubtful,'' meaning it is likely that Philly will again use Gardner Minshew at QB as the Eagles need one win to seal the NFC East title and keep playoff-bound Dallas behind them.

Dallas is hoping the Eagles lose twice ... and the banged-up Kamara can help make that happen. He wasn't present for practice on Wednesday and Thursday, but on Friday, Saints coach Dennis Allen provided an update on his star running back.

"He'll be ready to go this weekend," Allen said.

Good, the Cowboys might say in reply.

DEC 30 NEW O-LINE ISSUE? The injury to center Tyler Biadasz is being termed a "serious'' one ... meaning the playoff-bound Cowboys' O-line depth is about to be tested.

Biadasz, the starting center, got rolled up on in the win at the Titans on Thursday and needed to be carted to the locker room ... and when he returned to the sideline it was in a walking boot. 

The early diagnosis is a high ankle sprain, which could mean a month or more of him out.

If he is lost for any significant time - maybe for the season - the Cowboys will likely go forward with the group that finished the 27-13 win at Tennessee, with left guard Connor McGovern sliding over to play center, with rookie left tackle Tyler Smith moving to left guard and Jason Peters coming off the bench to play left tackle.

Peters, 40, could also play guard, but one concern with him is that Dallas seems to prefer to play him in spots - maybe in deference to his age - rather than ask him to play 65 snaps a game.

But that might have to change, because with Biadasz out, something is.

DEC 29 COWBOYS 2 MOVES The Cowboys are at Tennessee tonight and have elevated center Brock Hoffman and running back Qadree Ollison from the practice squad to the active roster.

The Hoffman move is a repeat from last week, though he might be in play tonight if the Cowboys - a 13-point favorite against the mail-it-in Titans - get a fat lead.

Meanwhile, Ollison is in play because the Cowboys are ruling out Tony Pollard (thigh) for the game, with Ezekiel Elliott and Malik Davis the top backs for this game.

DEC 28 TACO OUT Taco Charlton keeps on keepin' on in his NFL career, though he will now have to find himself another home in the NFL as he's been officially waived by the Bears.

Charlton, 28, was selected by the Cowboys with the 28th overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. After spending two seasons with the Cowboys as a part-time starter, Charlton had brief stints with the Dolphins, Chiefs, Steelers, Saints and Bears.

In 60 career games, Charlton has 95 total tackles, 12 tackles for loss, 11.5 sacks and four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.

DEC 27 JAWS II? The Cowboys determined last spring that Blake Jarwin's hip ailments would likely not allow him to operate as an NFL player any longer.

The Philadelphia Eagles seem to disagree.

There are now some travel issues, apparently, but it is being reported that the Eagles are bringing in the former Cowboys tight end for a workout.

The 28-year-old "Jaws'' may now have that session on Wednesday.

In his best year with Dallas in 2019, Jarwin caught 31 passes for 365 yards and three touchdowns. The plan at one time was for Jarwin and close friend Dalton Schultz to be what they called a "two-headed monster'' in the Cowboys offense.

But multiple injuries, including an ACL tear suffered in Week 1 of the 2020 season, and then most troubling an "unusual'' hip injury requiring surgery in March seemed to spell the end for the 6-5, 260-pound talent.

Philadelphia has Dallas Goedert at the top of its depth chart ... but what a wild twist if a future Cowboys obstacle to success is represented by old pal Jarwin in green as the two NFC East rivals joust for playoff supremacy.

DEC 25 ERIN HELPS D A sideline video of FOX reporter Erin Andrews is going viral after she recorded a "pass defensed'' in Saturday afternoon's game.

Andrews was stationed on the sideline during the Cowboys vs. Eagles game in which Dallas beat Philadelphia, 40-34, at home on Christmas Eve. The losing QB was Gardner Minshew, subbing for an injured Jalen Hurts and part of an Eagles offense that was victimized by four Dallas takeaways ...

And Andrews' "big play.''

"Gardner Minshew hits a wide open @ErinAndrews," one fan joked on social media.

Andrews responded: "I married a hockey player. Hit it with my wrist and move on. Hot."

The Cowboys improved to 11-4 on the season with Saturday's win over the Eagles, who dropped to 13-2 with the loss.

DEC 22 MICAH BACK Cowboys star Micah Parsons is back in building and "feeling much better," per coach Mike McCarthy, and "will do everything'' in practice today after two missed practices due to illness as 10-4 Dallas preps for the Christmas Eve visit from the Eagles.

Philly QB Jalen Hurts, meanwhile, will not play, according to the 13-1 Eagles, who will start Gardner Minshew on Saturday.

DEC 20 EAGLES' MINSHEW TO SPEAK AT LEACH FUNERAL Eagles backup quarterback Gardner Minshew was excused from Philadelphia's Tuesday walkthrough so he could attend and speak at Mike Leach's funeral.

Minshew played for Leach at Washington State and expressed how deep his relationship was with the recently-passed coach.

“He was the first person I’ve ever been around who, just by the way he lived and how authentic he was, brings that out in the people around him,” Minshew said, via Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer. “I never found myself more comfortable with myself than when I was with coach Leach. The way he believed in me — that belief, that’s something that really resonates, and that’s something I tell any parent, coach, teacher. The best thing you can do for a kid is believe in him. And he did that for me, and it changed my life.”

Minshew may get the start against the Cowboys on Saturday after Jalen Hurts suffered a sprained shoulder in the Eagles' 25-20 win over the Bears on Sunday.

DEC 18 JERRY TO OBJ  tWe know that along with the Cowboys signing of T.Y. Hilton last Monday, there were continued talks with Odell Beckham Jr., with the tone and purpose being described as "AAAA.''

We also know that owner Jerry Jones has been quite open about wanting both of them, and of continuing his pursuit of the rehabbing OBJ, going so far as to say, "Odell is joining us.''

But there is one more reality here: This is no longer a Stephen Jones concern or a Will McClay concern or a Mike McCarthy thing or a "cap department'' thing.

It's all Jerry.

Reports NFL Network: "Since Beckham left Dallas after his free-agent visit, it has been Jones speaking to him directly almost exclusively, discussing a possible signing.

This doesn't necessarily mean others at The Star don't share Jerry's enthusiasm for the idea. ... though some of Jones' top lieutenants likely view OBJ (due to his questionable availability) as a back-burner idea. But it does fortify our belief that Jerry, age 80, has "The Itch,'' and that he wants to put his personal stamp on something impactful.

DEC 16 RANDY RETURNS? Explosive pass rusher Randy Gregory is return to the field again after a nine-week stretch on IR, maybe as soon as Sunday against the visiting Cardinals.

And some in Denver view this as a "risk'' ... and maybe as a way for first-year Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett to save his job.

The Broncos are 3-10, maybe the NFL's biggest disappointment after their trade for QB Russell Wilson. The big-money Gregory move hasn't worked, either, in large part due to injury. ... but bottom line is, the former Cowboys end, who left via free agency, has two sacks.

Said Hackett: “We’re looking forward to him hopefully playing on Sunday. We want him to be out there on Sunday. It’s hard to replace a guy like that. He’s a presence. How he attacks the edge, sets the edge, and rushes the passer—that’s something that we can really use.”

But, write our guys at Mile High Huddle: "With the Broncos now out of playoff contention, bringing the 30-year-old back at this juncture is bound to raise questions. ... Hackett’s desire to get Gregory back this season is understandable, especially considering how losing key players has contributed so heavily towards him likely being a one-and-done head coach in Denver. ... Hackett's enthusiasm to restore Gregory to the lineup is bound to be driven by his own self-preservation. ... (Injury risk) makes Gregory's return somewhat of a risky proposition.''

DEC 14 REINFORCEMENTS The Dallas Cowboys have claimed cornerback Trayvon Mullen, who the Arizona Cardinals waived on Tuesday. The signing of Mullen comes after the Cowboys lost starting corner Anthony Brown to a season-ending injury suffered against the Indianapolis Colts. 

Mullen, 25, is a former second-round pick from the 2019 NFL Draft. He's 6-2 and 201 and played at Clemson.

DEC 14 RUSH IN, LONGHORN OUT The Cowboys, as reported exclusively by, hosted massive defensive tackle Anthony Rush for a Tuesday visit here at The Star and now the signing of him to the practice squad is official.

The club is also releasing linebacker Malik Jefferson, the former Texas Longhorn, from the practice squad.

DEC 13 NEW DT? Anthony Rush - 6-5, 350, age 26 - is visiting the Cowboys today as the team searches for help now that vet defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins (pec) is injured for rest of regular season.

Rush came into the league as an UDFA rookie in 2019 out of UAB and has made a series of stops, mostly as a practice-squadder - with three different stints with the Eagles.

DEC 12 KYLER DOWN Kyler Murray was carted off the field after suffering what appeared to be a non-contact leg injury in the early going of the Cardinals' "Monday Night Football'' meeting with the New England Patriots.

Murray, a DFW native and the centerpiece of the Cardinals team, was according to ESPN's reporting "sobbing'' as he was taken off the field. 

Murray was scrambling on the third play of the game Monday night and was trying to make a move on a defender when his leg buckled.

As he was moved to the cart, Murray - as a high schooler in Allen, Texas a three-time state champion with an undefeated record - was met by players from the Cardinals and Patriots offering encouragement.

Colt McCoy has entered to play quarterback for the 4-8 Cardinals against the 6-6 Pats.

DEC 12 LEACH HEART ATTACK The latest on Mike Leach ...

"Mississippi State football coach Mike Leach had a massive heart attack on Sunday in Starkville and was transferred to University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, where he is still being cared for on Monday," the Clarion Ledger reported on Monday morning.

The paper cited sources in reporting that Leach, 61, "collapsed at his home in Starkville, but did not receive medical attention for between 10 to 15 minutes. EMTs used a defibrillator machine and delivered multiple shocks to restore normal heart rhythm.''

Leach, the former Texas Tech coach, was then transported by helicopter to UMMC.

Leach is presently surrounded by family.

Our thoughts continue to be with the Leach family at this time.

DEC 11 LEACH HOSPITALIZED Mississippi State announced on Sunday afternoon that Mike Leach, the innovative former Texas Tech football coach, has been rushed to the hospital, and it seems there is a level of seriousness to Leach's illness that is causing friends and colleagues to ask for prayers.

In a statement, Mississippi State said "Leach had a personal health issue at his home earlier today ... That issue led to a decision to transfer Coach Leach to the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson by ambulance.''

Leach, 61, is a colorful and sometimes controversial figure, the "pirate'' having led the Red Raiders to some of the program's highest highs during his time in Lubbock.

For more, read here.

DEC 11 TONY'S TOPS Tiger Woods, in an interview in conjunction with Capital One's The Match, named the best non-professional golfers he's ever played with.

And the winners are ... former Atlanta Braves pitcher John Smoltz and former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo.

Smoltz has a +1.5 handicap, Romo a +1.6 handicap. 

Last summer, the CBS broadcaster won his third title at the American Century Championship, the popular celebrity golf tournament in Lake Tahoe.

DEC 9 Jerry Jones is labeling the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Reform investigation claiming to confirm the alleged "toxic workplace'' overseen by Dan Snyder and the Washington Commanders.

"I hope our fans see how politically biased this report is,” Jones said on 105.3 The Fan on Friday. “This report doesn't even come out if the Republicans were in Congress. ... It's that stupid.''

The Republican Oversight Committee has indeed called this a “sham investigation” that was “an egregious waste of taxpayer-funded resources.”

Said Jones: "My point is there is bias all the way through. There are stories behind the stories.''

DEC 8 COACH REDBALL ONCE AGAIN? Former Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett emerged as a top candidate for the open job at Stanford, and he confirmed the connection late Thursday. ...

But along with the confirmation came a decision announced on Twitter.

Wrote Garrett: "Thanks so much to AD Bernard Muir and everyone at Stanford! While I enjoyed exploring a great opportunity at such a special place, I’m so excited to continue my work at NBC on "Football Night in America'' and with Notre Dame Football!

The former Princeton and NFL quarterback was a finalist for the Duke job a year ago and presently is in his first year working as an analyst for NBC Sports.

DEC 6 REINFORCEMENTS The Cowboys were forced into adding depth at defensive back following a season-ending injury to starting cornerback Anthony Brown. Brown suffered a torn Achilles in Sunday's 54-19 win over the Indianapolis Colts, meaning the Cowboys needed to add help. 

As reported by, the Cowboys will sign cornerback Mackensie Alexander to the practice squad after hosting workouts at The Star on Tuesday.

Alexander, a former second-round pick of the Minnesota Vikings, was cut after a short stint with the Miami Dolphins in September after sustaining a groin injury. 

Dallas also worked out CB Torry McTyer … and as you may know, did not work out OBJ.

DEC 5 'GOOD VISIT!' Odell Beckham Jr. ... trying to be funny?

OBJ was in Buffalo over the weekend making his free agent visit to the Bills, and on Sunday visited with Von Miller on a Twitch stream. Beckham was asked whether he enjoyed his time in town.

"I had the wings, the lemon pepper was good," Beckham told Miller. "Everything was good, bro. It was a good visit."

And now? It's the Dallas Cowboys, his hosts as you read this are, for Monday and Tuesday meetings. ... who are hoping he has a "good visit'' here in Frisco as well. 

His three-step itinerary is detailed above.

DEC 4 COWBOYS WIN, LOSE AB The Cowboys dominated the Colts, 54-19 on "Sunday Night Football'' but tucked inside the win is a loss, as the team is noting that a serious Achilles tear is the fear for starting cornerback Anthony Brown.

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“I’m sick for him, sick for us,'' Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said.

Brown gave way to Kelvin Joseph during the game as the Dallas secondary depth will be tested moving forward.

DEC 4 JIMMY PREDICTS Jimmy Johnson's predictions to open NFL Week 13, in short-hand?

'No' on the Eagles, 'Yes' on the Super Bowl Cowboys.

To be more specific: The "no'' is about Dallas catching the one-loss Eagles in the NFC East race. But the "yes'' is about what the Cowboys, who enter the weekend with a record of 8-3 and are favored to beat the Colts at home on Sunday night, can ultimately do even as a wild card.

Said Jimmy of the Cowboys: "They're not going to catch Philadelphia (in the NFC East), but (starting) in the wild card round, I think they’re good enough to make it all the way.”

DEC 4 NFC RACE The Washington Commanders are going into the locker room against the New York Giants tied at 13-all ... and the Eagles have a lead over the Titans ... all part of NFL Week 13 as the Cowboys watch ... and rest up for the nightcap, with the Colt visiting here at AT&T Stadium.

The Commanders started the game off with a bang after forcing Giants quarterback Daniel Jones to fumble on the fourth play of the game. Jonathan Allen forced his second fumble of the year and it set Washington up nicely in New York territory.

Taylor Heinicke and the offense helped tack on a field goal on the ensuing drive. And on the team's next offensive possession, Heinicke found wide receiver Terry McLaurin for a 19-yard touchdown. However, Washington's 10-0 lead going into the second quarter quickly vanished.

The Giants put together consecutive scoring drives of their own. The first came on a 48-yard field goal from Graham Gano and the second came on a 13-yard rushing touchdown from Saquon Barkley.

Washington retook a lead on the next drive on a 42-yard field goal from Slye, leading to the two-minute warning. New York also led a drive deep into Washington territory, and kicked a chip shot field goal to tie the game.

The Giants are 7-4, Washington enters the weekend at 7-5 ... Philly is 10-1 and in first place in the division, with Dallas at 8-3.

DEC 3 OBJ NOT BUFFALO WINGS The Buffalo Bills' Odell Beckham Jr. visit is official as of Saturday night, and dinner is served.

What's on the "Welcome Odell!'' menu? Per our Bills SI coverage ...

The first course: A fried goat cheese salad.

The second course: A Cajun seafood pasta (a smart fit for the Louisiana native Beckham).

The third course: Steak au poivre, described as “Peppercorn-encrusted angus prime tenderloin filet with Brandy cream sauce.

The fourth course: "Gooey butter cake with Bourbon ice cream'' or "Red velvet cake.''

Sounds delicious. 

OBJ will be in Frisco on Monday. (Flying but not running.)

Gumbo and BBQ at Dak Prescott's house, anybody?

DEC 1 STILL NO DIGGS OR GALLUP Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy is making it clear that the Dallas illness bug still isn't going away ... and for Michael Gallup and Trevon Diggs it means a second straight day of absence from practice here at The Star.

They will be involved in meetings virtually ... which might also be the case for Terence Steele, who was not present for the media-open portion of the Thursday workout at Dallas preps for the Sunday night visit from the Colts.

NOV 30 TYRON AND WASHINGTON UPDATE It was an upbeat Wednesday here inside The Star for the Dallas Cowboys as they prep for Sunday night's visit from the Colts ...

With both Tyron Smith and James Washington on track to return to the roster.

Washington's 21-day window was activated on Wednesday; we're told that could soon also happen for Tyron, sources telling that the Dec. 11 visit from the Houston Texans could be his target to make his 2022 in-game debut.

Of course, even on a most upbeat day, nothing's perfect.

And along those lines ... Trevon Diggs and Michael Gallup both get DNPs due to illness.

NOV 29 OBJ PREDICTION COMES TRUE! We stated our position on this early Sunday morning, when Adam Schefter of ESPN tried to create a "splash'' with a report about OBJ that isn't really a "report'' at all.

We said the phrasing of Schefter's "news'' would be framed a certain way by the audience ... a way Schefter knew it would be framed.

Even though the frame is crooked.

And now, on Monday? Schefter quoting an anonymous “NFL exec” on what the Las Vegas odds should be regarding where he signs, and quoting the invisible person saying "It sounds like OBJ to Dallas'' ... has taken on a life of its own.

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It's a meme now. Not a news story, like the one we've been on from early Sunday regarding Odell Beckham Jr. being ejected from a commercial airline flight.

But a meme. Well done, Adam. We suppose.

'NOV 28 OBJ ODD ODDS How can you tell when we’ve reached a saturation point on the pursuit of OBJ?

When ESPN is quoting an anonymous “NFL exec” on what the Las Vegas odds should be regarding where he signs.

Adam Schefter writes, “Here’s what one executive on a team linked to Odell Beckham Jr. said this weekend about a potential landing spot for the free-agent WR: ‘It sounds like it will be Dallas. If you’re in Vegas, your 2-1 favorite is the Cowboys and everyone else is 5- or 6-1.”

This, we suppose, is an effort to cover every angle of the story. But in another sense, it’s “sound and fury” stuff.

The guy is anonymous, the guy couches his “insight” with the words “sounds like,” and he and Schefter can also get off this “prediction” by saying one of the “5-1 teams” simply pulled off the upset …

Even though it maybe never have been an upset at all.

At this point, there remain more questions than answers, and that includes the reports - obviously leaking from the OBJ camp - that he's "cleared to play.'' ... when fact is, the Cowboys and the other suitors don't even know that yet.

NOV 24 VON DOWN Von Miller is the centerpiece of what the Buffalo Bills do in so many ways, including that team's jousting with the Dallas Cowboys in the recruitment of Odell Beckham Jr ... But for this moment, in the Thanksgiving game at Detroit, that last listed ability to contribute is in limbo.

Miller has been carted off the field in the first half of the Bills at Lions game with what is believed to be a knee injury. He's done for the day at the Bills start the second half with a 17-14 lead.

You can read more here about the Bills situation here.

NOV 22 WARE AND WOODSON ADVANCE DeMarcus Ware is a semifinalist for the second time and Darren Woodson a semifinalist for the seventh time as both Cowboys legends advance one step nearer to immortality in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The Hall released its group of 28 on Tuesday. Five first-year eligible nominees are among the 28 Modern-Era Player semifinalists for the Class of 2023. Ware and Woodson are among the group of 19 players who were semifinalists a year ago.

The final announcement on who's in will come early in 2023.

NOV 22 RAMS RETIREMENT RUMOR Is Matthew Stafford done?

The DFW product has his Super Bowl, but now his Los Angeles are struggling, a 27-20 loss to the New Orleans Saints marking the Rams' fourth loss in a row ... and back-to-back concussion protocol weeks raising questions about the future of Stafford's career.

On Monday, NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport discussed what lies ahead for Stafford and the Rams on Pat McAfee's show.

“I don’t know what his decision is going to be,” Rapoport said. “I think he will be back, but I don’t know. I think the health of the team overall goes into it ...''

Health, or a lack thereof, has been a major talking point for a Rams team that has struggled to stay healthy. They are down multiple offensive lineman, star receiver Cooper Kupp is on IR and Stafford - beyond the concussion concerns - entered the season with a bum shoulder that has impacted his season.

Stafford, who played in high school here in Dallas at Highland Park High, turns 35 in February 2023, and all told, this seems a viable conversation piece for him, his family and the Rams.

NOV 19 KELLEN - AGAIN? The Dallas Cowboys have become accustomed to it. Offensive coordinator Kellen Moore is a constant when it comes to being mentioned as a potential head coach candidates. ... young, old, no matter.

And it's happening again, with’s list of young coaches to watch having two Cowboys names appear.

What says about Moore, 34: "Moore is highly regarded for his football IQ and creativity. And he was busy last January, interviewing with the Jaguars, Broncos, Dolphins and Vikings for their head coaching jobs. (The Eagles interviewed Moore the previous year, too.) Like many really young coaches, Moore has a lot to learn in terms of the whole picture of running a program. He would need a good plan for his staff and to surround himself with experienced people. But the tools are there.''

And one more guy, D-line coach Aden Durde, 43, is on the list as a "futures'' candidate. Durde, as Cowboys fans know, is from Great Britain and has gained the rest of fellow coaches and players.

We've seen all sorts of speculation about coordinator Dan Quinn leaving/not leaving Dallas, and what that might mean to Durde. We'll gently remind, "Remember Where We Live'' and say that the speculation is a) very premature and b) tends to skip past the powerful presence of Joe Whitt Jr. on the Dallas staff.

Stay tuned ...

NOV 18 COMMANDERS TO HONOR VIRGINIA SHOOTING VICTIMS Days after a shooting claimed the lives of three University of Virginia football players, the Washington Commanders are set to wear a helmet decal honoring them Sunday against the Houston Texans.

Lavel Davis Jr., Devin Chandler and D'Sean Perry were killed in a shooting last Sunday night by a former Virginia football player. Running back Mike Hollins and another student were shot, but are nursing injuries.

NOV 15 OBJ Odell Beckham Jr. is on the Dallas Cowboys radar. And that shouldn't change just because CeeDee Lamb had a standout performance in Sunday's OT loss at Green Bay ... right? 

Right, says Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.

"I don't think so,'' Jones told 105.3 The Fan when asked of a change in approach. "I will say that was the best game I've ever seen (Lamb) play. But a talent like Odell is additive. With Beckham, the whole nature is that he can get us substantively above where we are. 

"We'll see where that is."

Well, we will see where that is if he chooses Dallas from his list of five preferences. (Or is it "two preferences''?

But this much is true: Lamb is on the record as being a big fan of OBJ, and joins the chorus of voices here at The Star, in the locker room and beyond, in supporting the Beckham courtship.

CeeDee’s endorsement of an alluring master plan: “Why wouldn’t you want to add more firepower to the offense? I feel like we had three No. 1 receivers in my rookie year. Why not get back to that?”

NOV 15 OBJ LAWSUIT Odell Beckham Jr. has filed a lawsuit against Nike that alleges the shoe giant owes him $20 million from an endorsement deal gone bad.

Yes, that's the same $20 million number that OBJ is reportedly seeking, in terms of an annual salary, from the Dallas Cowboys and other suitors.

What did Nike do wrong?

“Today, I’m taking a stand not just for me, but to set a precedent for all athletes who have dedicated their life to the sport they love — especially those who don’t have the means to stand up for themselves,” Beckham writes. “We are held responsible for fulfilling our obligations under our contracts, but we also have to hold powerful companies like Nike accountable for honoring their commitments too.”

The lawsuit alleges that Beckham “has suffered damages of $20,625,000 plus prejudgment interest.”

NOV 12 OBJ FINAL 5? The OBJ Sweepstakes - in the eyes of free agent Odell Beckham Jr. himself - reportedly includes the Dallas Cowboys and four other teams … and the five wish-list finalists, not coincidentally, are five teams with five of the NFL’s best records.

And more: ESPN is reporting that in addition to narrowing his list of prospective teams, he’s also got a target date: He now has medical clearance to play following his lengthy knee rehab and plans a decision by the end of November.

The five teams: The Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Buffalo Bills, San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs. … all of which happen to be leading playoff contenders.

NOV 12 OBJ VISITS WITH GM Great news ... except the visit wasn't (yet) with the Dallas Cowboys GM.

According to Bills standout Von Miller, that visit has occurred by phone in Buffalo.

I’ve had him on the phone with the general manager,'' Miller said this week. "(Buffalo GM Brandon) Beane sees it the same way that I see it.

"The ball is in OBJ’s court.''

This is the first bit of clarity offered regarding the recruiting of the two-time All-Pro receiver Beckham, who is reportedly on the verge of getting medical clearance to play again after a lengthy knee rehab.

The Dallas Cowboys have joined the Bills in talking openly about plans to recruit Beckham, with Dallas COO Stephen Jones saying the Cowboys will make a "compelling case'' that could include a multi-year contract offer to the 30-year old star.

And the Cowboys locker room, led by Dak Prescott and Micah Parsons, seem to be in on the effort as well.

Beckham could also have the San Francisco 49ers, the New York Giants and others on his list as he searches for a place he can call "home,'' as he recently put it.

It is the opinion (biased as it might be) of Cowboys icon Michael Irvin that OBJ will excel in a spotlight city like Dallas; indeed, Irvin is all-but-predicting that's what's going to happen. But the spotlight is also on in Buffalo because of the quality of the football team, among other reasons.

Can OBJ be at "home'' in Buffalo?

In a visit on The Pivot Podcast, Miller - who left the "spotlight'' with the Los Angeles Rams to come here - reiterated his feelings on the subject.

“I wouldn’t try to get him to come here if we didn’t have a chance,” said Miller.

Read more from the Bills perspective here.

NOV 11 'FINAL' PRACTICE INJURY REPORT - ZEKE AND/OR TONY? Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on Friday continues to maintain that he expects Ezekiel Elliott (knee) to play Sunday at Green Bay: 

“I do,'' Jones tells 105.3 The Fan. "Everything I’ve seen, I watched him yesterday, I think he’s on go.”

There is reason for that optimism, because in fact, as coach Mike McCarthy told us on Friday, Elliott had a “good day of practice” Thursday and "did everything. ... he took all of his reps in the team period.''

But our understanding is that Dallas is being patient here, waiting to see how Zeke gets through Friday and Saturday. And if he cannot go?

"Tony Pollard,'' McCarthy said with authority, "is a man.''

And, of course, so is Elliott. Stay tuned. ...

And Friday version is ...

Zeke is officially "questionable.''

NOV 10 HERE’S TYRON! "Baby steps,'' All-Pro left tackle Tyron Smith calls them as he rehabs after what happened to his hamstring - which was "ripped off the bone'' back before the start of the season.

And now? He's still on IR, of course, but he is here at practice on Thursday at The Star ... and he's stepping, alright, working on the cords with trainer Britt Brown.

© Provided by Cowboy Maven on FanNation

Your FIRST LOOK from Inside The Star ...

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"I don't have a game in mind but his progress is notable," said team owner Jerry Jones recently. "His work is intense. We are gonna see a lot of football out of Tyron. It'll be closer to the end of the year, but we're gonna see a lot of football."

© Provided by Cowboy Maven on FanNation

And today? We saw a lot of Tyron.

© Provided by Cowboy Maven on FanNation

Meanwhile ...

Two names on the Dallas practice/injury report, Anthony Barr and Jake Ferguson. And in Green Bay, Aaron Jones is listed as "limited.''

NOV 9 O-LINE STUFF The Cowboys had some high-profile O-line fun on Wednesday here at The Star - and engaged in some under-the-radar O-line stuff as well.

Dallas signed two offensive tackles, George Moore and Alex Taylor, to the practice squad. Moore (6-6, 325) is from Oregon and went undrafted this year. He was recently with the Packers.

Taylor, 25 and undrafted in 2020 after finishing at South Carolina State, is an especially intriguing guy due to his 6-9, 300-pound frame. He's been with the Browns at the Bears.

Meanwhile, an attendee at the Wednesday workout as Dallas preps for Sunday at Green Bay was future Hall of Fame tackle Tyron Smith, who was in good spirits as he hopes to return to the field later in this calendar year after sustaining his serious hamstring tear.

NOV 9 ZEKE INVITES OBJ Ezekiel Elliott is now the first actual Cowboys player to speak (not type on Twitter) on the subject of Dallas trying to sign Odell Beckham Jr:

And Zeke is saying a mouthful.

“We know how explosive he can be,” Elliott said after Wednesday’s workout here inside The Star. “It’d be great to have him in Dallas … Another weapon in our repertoire.”

That’s on the field. And what about beyond that?

“I think he’d fit in great in our locker room,” said Elliott of the knee-rehabbing two-time All-Pro wideout. “I don’t know who wouldn’t fit in our locker room.”

NOV 8 AARON TALKS 'BIG MIKE' Much has been made of the friction that existed during Aaron Rodgers' time spent working with coach Mike McCarthy when both were central figures on the Green Bay Packers. 

But lest you think they haven't grown to appreciate one another ...

"I can't wait to give Big Mike a big ol' hug,'' Rodgers said on "The Pat McAfee Show.'' I know it means a lot to him to come back.''

Indeed it does, as an emotional Cowboys coach McCarthy said this week in previewing Sunday's Cowboys at Packers meeting.

And, McCarthy noted, the legendary QB Rodgers is part of that emotion, in a positive way.

"I'm really looking forward to seeing Aaron,'' said McCarthy, reflecting on good times that included a Super Bowl title. "I have nothing but love and gratitude for him. ... I think of the one-on-one conversations we used to have, especially in the younger days, and it always ended with a hug and I love ya. So that's what I think about our relationship. I think he made me a much better coach.''

NOV 7 INJURY UPDATE FOR COWBOYS AT PACKERS The Cowboys do expect Ezekiel Elliott (knee) to play on Sunday in Green Bay, but he is sitting out the Monday workout here inside The Star.

Said coach Mike McCarthy on Elliott: "Zeke won't practice today but I know he's making great progress."

Other injury updates: Defensive end Sam Williams will work, Malik Hooker might be limited and Dallas could start the 21-day clock on the return of James Washington.

And for the Pack? Aaron Jones avoided serious injury in the loss to the Lions but his left foot is in a boot. And Romeo Doubs, Eric Stokes and Rashan Gary all sustained more serious injuries and exited Sunday with crutches.

NOV 6 COWBOYS TRADE OFFER ON JEUDY While cynics still wonder just how serious the Cowboys were - and are - about obtaining help at receiver ...

We can add a report about Jerry Jeudy to the list.

We know Dallas has Odell Beckham Jr. "on the radar.''

We know Dallas made a run at Brandin Cooks of the Texans (though some critics suggest it was all "for show.''

And now comes this nugget from NFL Network: The Cowboys also made an offer on Broncos receiver Jeudy. "The two sides could not agree on a price,'' per NFL Network Insider Tom Pelissero. ... and we're quite sure the price was high - though some rumors place the asking cost at a second-round pick, not outrageous for a player with Jeudy's potential and with a 23-year-old still playing on his rookie contract.

In the end, said Denver GM George Paton, “We received a number of calls on our receivers and some other positions. ... (But) we have a good thing going. We're in it to win it moving forward and so we kept all of our receivers.”

If Dallas was willing to give "a second-rounder plus'' for Cooks ... it stands to reason the Cowboys would do the same for Jeudy. That suggests that Denver might not have actually settled for the rumored "second-round cost.'' ... so they "kept all of their receivers.''

Next on the agenda? The OBJ Sweepstakes, as Beckham is now talking openly about joining Dallas.

NOV 5 MICAH VS. JOSH Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons has moved into rare air in terms of popularity, as he topped all jersey sales across the league for the month of October, according to official NFLPA sales figures. 

Micah is the first defensive player to lead the sales rankings this season, a domain often reserved for guys on the other side of the ball. Indeed, for the month, Bills quarterback Josh Allen finished second. Then came Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, Panthers-to-Niners running back Christian McCaffrey and Giants running back Saquon Barkley placed fifth.

Cowboys receiver CeeDee Lamb (No. 7) and cornerback Trevon Diggs (No. 9) also finished top-10.

NOV 3 NEW OWNERS? Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos is - worded one way or another by various outlets -"looking into buying the Washington Commanders" and is “serious” about it - in the wake of franchise owner Dan Snyder this week announcing an exploring of options to sell the NFL team.

Bezos could do the deal "possibly in partnership" with Jay-Z, according to People magazine..

Bezos, 58, is said to be worth $139 billion. The Washington franchise could sell for in the range of $5 billion.

NOV 2 SNYDER SELLING? JERRY 'BAILING'? Dan Snyder is looking into the idea of selling his Washington Commanders, which leads one to wonder whether the embattled boss has lost support among his NFL ownership pals.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has long been one of those pals, and Jones recently went public in suggesting that he knows of no reasons why Snyder should be forced to sell.

But now Snyder is examining the idea. And NFL insider Jay Glazer is reporting that other owners are "bailing'' on him. And it doesn't take an NFL "insider,'' or a mathematician, to wonder about 2+2 = 4 ...

OCT 30 DAK'S OTHER THUMB The Cowboys are feeling no pain right now in Weke 8 against the Bears here at AT&T Stadium, having built a 28-7 lead with Dak Prescott piling up the numbers ...

And the thumb injuries.

Dak in this first half has run for one TD and thrown for two more. But while his throwing-hand thumb is all healed up ... on a 25-yard scamper a Chicago player accidentally stepped on his other thumb.

Prescott needed the docs to look at it, but did not miss a snap ... as you sort of figured, after being "antsy'' to come back for five weeks ... he wouldn't.

OCT 28 INJURY NEWS Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy believes that Lion-backer Micah Parsons, nursing a shoulder issue, might continue to stay in bubble wrap on Friday - he hasn't practiced this week - but then should practice on Saturday in the final workout before Sunday's Week 8 visit from the Bears.

The news on Ezekiel Elliott and his knee? Not so positive.

"The only chance he has of playing is if he keeps going at the rate he is going,'' said McCarthy, not sounding too positive about the concept.

Practice-squadder Malik Davis is being prepped to dress out on Sunday and Tony Pollard is already saying he's prepared to "haul'' the football against the Bears.

Worth noting: Owner Jerry Jones on 105.3 The Fan on Friday said the coming bye has Dallas leaning toward sitting Elliott.

“It had everything to do with how we’re doing this this weekend with this bye coming up,'' Jones said. "I’m not so sure we would’ve done it this way had we not had the bye.”

OCT 27 KADARIUS TONEY TRADE OUT OF NFC EAST The New York Giants second-year wide receiver Kadarius Toney was always a scary thought …

But that’s mostly all he ever became in New York - a thought - as injuries and maybe misuse rendered him a non-entity …

And now he’s a member of the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for third- and sixth-round picks.

Toney, the 20th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, is athletic and young enough to be viewed as a low-risk potential “lottery ticket” in Kansas City.OCT 25 The Cowboys have decided they need a body and are now to sign free agent cornerback Kendall Sheffield to their practice squad, a source tells

Jourdan Lewis is out for the year due to foot surgery, with rookie DaRon Bland expected to move into the job at slot corner. But Sheffield is a Dan Quinn guy, a two-season starter in Atlanta after the 5-11, 212-pound Ohio State product was drafted by the Falcons in Round 4.

OCT 24 Falcons ex QB Matt Ryan is being benched by the Colts after a dismal performance by Indianapolis in NFL Week 7 ... and his replacement is Texas Longhorns ex Sam Ehlinger.

Part of the significance of the move: Word from Indy is that this is a "permanent'' fix for the QB position - that Ehlinger - who has yet to complete an NFL pass after being a sixth-round pick in 2021 - is being handed the job with the belief that he will keep it.

OCT 23 The Cowboys find themselves in a bit of a pressure cooker as they enter the fourth quarter in Sunday Week 7 here at AT&T Stadium, clinging to a 10-6 lead and having to deal with Detroit knocking on the 1-yard-line door. ...

And then Dallas forces the goal-line fumble - DeMarcus Lawrence with the hit, Anthony Barr with the recovery - to hold onto the late lead ...


OCT 23 WR OUT Lions wideout Amon-Ra St. Brown is OUT for the game with a concussion after he exited to the blue medical tent in the first quarter of the Detroit at Dallas game. A huge loss for the Lions offense, already missing running back D'Andre Swift, in its bid to upset the Cowboys here at AT&T Stadium.

OCT 22 4 MOVES The Cowboys have elevated tight end Sean McKeon and running back Malik Davis from practice squad ahead of Sunday’s game vs. the Lions. Additionally, Carlos Watkins has been signed to the 53-man roster to help along the D-line. And made official was the shift of rookie tackle Matt Waletzko to injured reserve.

The Watkins move suggests that Dallas might not activate rehabbing D-lineman Tarell Basham just yet, and the McKeon move looks like insurance as Dalton Schultz works through a knee issue. Also, the Davis elevation is to replace injured third-stringer Rico Dowdle.

OCT 21 ROOKIE OUT Matt Waletzko, the 6-8 rookie offensive tackle with the recurring shoulder issue, suffered another subluxation of that shoulder is expected to miss the rest of the 2022 season as the eventual surgery will be performed now, per the Dallas Morning News.

The bad news arrived here at The Star on an otherwise happy day with the full return of Dak Prescott to practice as the first-teamer and the planned starter in Week 7 vs. Detroit.

Waletzko, the Cowboys' fifth-round draft pick, first suffered the injury to his left shoulder during his senior year at North Dakota. He played through it in college but it popped up again as a problem in training camp, and Dallas entered the process knowing that the 22-year-old, who has worked as a swing tackle in his first season here, would eventually need surgery ... and that time is now.

OCT 18 JERRY VS. KRAFT & GOODELL? - NFL owners on Tuesday agreed almost unanimously on most things, but - according to ESPN - billionaire bosses Jerry Jones and Robert Kraft got involved in a heated exchange over the a new compensation package for commissioner Roger Goodell.

According to the story, the Dallas Cowboys owner at one point told the New England Patriots' boss, "Don't f--- with me!"

Replied Kraft, "Excuse me?"

"Don't mess with me," Jones repeated.

Meeting in New York, the owners voted 31-1 in favor of Goodell's deal, with Jones apparently the lone dissenter.

The New York Times reported last year that Goodell's total compensation over 2020-21 was nearly $128 million.

OCT 18 RAMS SIGN COWBOYS EX The Rams are making roster moves as they enter the NFL bye week. The shift of offensive lineman Joe Noteboom, who is out for the year after tearing his Achilles, part of the Rams' "unbelievable'' back luck in the O-line. ... had led to the signing of veteran offensive tackle Ty Nsekhe - a former Dallas Cowboys swing tackle and NFL part-time starter.

Additionally, the Rams released edge rusher Takk McKinley, a one-time standout who was signed last month. ... and who before that made a Cowboys training camp visit seeking a possible reunion with his old Falcons coach Dan Quinn, the Dallas defensive coordinator.

OCT 17 JACK OUT Jack Easterby, a controversial figure in the Houston Texans front office, is no longer involved with the franchise, which is "parting ways'' with the executive who at one time rose to the position of interim GM.

Easterby was hired by the organization in 2019 as executive vice president of team development, but he rapidly rose to power with the Texans as a year later he was promoted Easterby to executive vice president of football operations.

And rather astoundingly, despite his lack of "true football background,'' after the firing of coach and general manager Bill O’Brien in October of 2020, the Texans McNair ownership family allowed him to play the role of the club’s interim general manager.

ESPN is the first to report the news. For more on the story, go here.

OCT 16: GARRETT PICKS ... The Eagles?

“I never thought I’d say it,” he said.

Garrett, the Cowboys lifer as a player and coach now part of the NBC crew, made the prediction that the home-standing, undefeated and favored Philadelphia Eagles will win on "Sunday Night Football.''

It's a viable thought. But it still shocked our system. And ... his.

OCT 15 4 MOVES The Dallas Cowboys placed running back Rico Dowdle and receiver Simi Fehoko on Reserve/Injured on Saturday while also making a practice-squad shift for long-snapper Matt Overton up to the active roster.

Also elevated for Sunday's game at the Eagles: Running back Malik Davis (due to the Dowdle injury) and tight end Sean McKeon (as insurance against banged-up Dalton Schultz).

With Fehoko unavailable, look for rookie Jalen Tolbert to possibly get a shot to dress, and to maybe help on special teams.

Speaking of which: Mixed into this juggling act is the possibility of rookie Damone Clark - rehabbing from spinal surgery - to be moved to the active roster 

OCT 14 BEER ME Jerry Jones celebrated his 80th birthday on Thursday, and he is on record as wanting wins as his presents - last week at the Rams and this week at the Eagles - somebody at The Star had other ideas.

So .. 'Beer Me!' it is, as Miller Lite helps Jerry (or whoever it is who's going to gather up all those cases of beer from the practice field) celebrate.

OCT 12 WASHINGTON WINS UGLY The Washington Commanders, despite Carson Wentz's struggles (12/22, 99 yards), used goal-line stands to steal 12-7 win over the Chicago Bears on Thursday Night Football at Soldier Field.

Commanders rookie running back Brian Robinson Jr. scored his first NFL touchdown less than two months after being shot in the knee. Robinson ran the ball 17 times for 60 yards on the day.

But at the end, Chicago had one more chance, as QB Justin Fields ran the ball on a 39-yard gain to get the Bears all the way inside the 10-yard line ... but eventually cornerback Benjamin St-Juste stopped wide receiver Darnell Mooney on the 1-yard line on 4th down to turn the ball over once again and clinch the win for Washington.

The Commanders improve to 2-4 on the season, still trailing the 5-0 Eagles and the 4-1 Cowboys (who play Sunday night) and the 4-1 Giants in the NFC East.

OCT 11 NEW TE The Cowboys have a need at tight end with franchise-tagged standout Dalton Schultz among the Dallas guys dinged up at the position. And so, first came the workout  …

And now comes a signing of the former Houston Texans tight end Seth Green, 24, who was a DFW high school quarterback at Allen High, who after finishing working out today is reportedly getting a job, starting with a spot on the practice squad.

Green (6-4, 240) has speed as he showed after moving from the University of Houston to the Texans as an undrafted free agent. He also played at the University of Minnesota, where he was billed as a "wildcat QB.''

Meanwhile, regarding Dak Prescott’s availability for Sunday night at Philly? See above.

OCT 10 MICAH OK? Dallas coach Mike McCarthy, in Monday's review of the Cowboys' 22-10 win at the Rams on Sunday, is giving a positive update on the health of his star Lion-backer.

How is Micah and his groin issue today?

“Good,'' McCarthy said. "I saw him earlier. He’s getting better.”

Parsons sustained the injury in the Rams game but kept playing in spots, mostly as a pass-rusher. He ended up with two of Dallas' five sacks, including the strip-sack that sealed the victory to push his Cowboys to 4-1.

Dallas is at Philly on Sunday in a battle for first place in the NFC East.

Parsons' philosophy? "If I'm alive, I can go.''

OCT 9 INACTIVES The Cowboys inactives vs. the Rams: QB Dak Prescott (thumb), Jason Peters (chest), Quinton Bohanna (neck/shoulder), Jalen Tolbert, Nahshon Wright, Devin Harper and Markquese Bell, all of which means Tony Pollard (illness) is healthy, as is safety Jayron Kearse.

Dallas' captains today: Cooper Rush, Leighton Vander Esch and Bryan Anger.

OCT 8: ROSTER MOVES The Cowboys are traveling to Los Angeles to see the Rams in Week 5 and have two new linemen aboard the plane.

The Cowboys have elevated defensive lineman Carlos Watkins - a 2021 starter - from the practice squad for Sunday’s game at the Rams, a move made neccesary by the fact that Quinton Bohanna (neck/shoulder) is listed as questionable.

Also up is new long-snapper Matt Overton, a street free agent in for Jake McQuaide, who is out and injured for the year.

Additionally, concerns about Tony Pollard's illness seem to be subsiding as he is traveling with the team to L.A. while the Cowboys did not make a practice-squad move to replace him.

OCT 6 McCARTHY ODDS SHOCK The question was a good one, and innocuous enough. Does Dallas coach Mike McCarthy ever use the news of a game's point spread to inspire his team? In other words, can be the "underdog'' - using specific oddsmakers numbers - be motivating?

McCarthy made it clear that he has not really done that. And then - proving that odds are not his bag - he asked the media here at The Star what the point spread is for Cowboys at Rams this weekend.

He was told that it's "5.5 points.''

"We ... WE'RE underdogs?!'' said McCarthy, the "Coach of the Year'' candidate coach of the 3-1 Cowboys, with sincere shock.

It was really rather endearing. He truly didn't know about the numbers, likely reflective of the fact that Cooper Rush (though he is 3-0 this year as a starter) is still the first-team QB as Dak Prescott continues to rehab.

Later, gathering himself, he boldly said, “I’ll just say this: We’re nobody’s underdog - if you (media) need a quote.''

OCT 5 INJURY NOTES The Cowboys are getting ready for a Week 5 trip to the Rams, with the official practice/injury report from both teams now available ...

No on Dak Prescott (but good stuff), yes on Damone Clark (really good stuff), and much more here.

OCT 4 BRADY FALLOUT There is no joy in divorce. But there are realities.

There is no joy in divorce of public figures. But in the cases of Tom Brady and wife Gisele Bundchen, they have made highly crafted public images for themselves, meaning the fact that they are reportedly taking steps toward getting a divorce is fodder for rumors ...

And fodder for speculation about what the "distraction'' might mean to the NFL.

The Bucs, especially during Brady's time there after his departure from the New England Patriots, where he won six of his seven Super Bowl rings, have largely been in charge of the NFC South. At this moment, though, the divisional lead is shared by the Bucs and by the Falcons, both at 2-2, and they play in Week 5.

Meanwhile, the Dallas Cowboys are 3-1 - and their only loss came in Week 1, at the hands of Brady's Bucs.

Brady was a near-perennial champion as the main man on the roster of the dynastic Patriots, and then won a Super Bowl with the Buccaneers upon leaving New England. But now? As with injuries and arrests, "things happen'' ... and Tom Brady, famous for focus and execution and excellence, surely has a great deal on his mind as he and the Bucs joust with the Cowboys and other NFC contenders in an effort to stay on top.

OCT 4 GREGORY OUT The Denver Broncos are going to be without defensive end Randy Gregory, maybe for as long as six weeks, as he recovers from arthroscopic knee surgery.

Gregory, in the first year of his five-year $70 million deal in Denver after leaving the Dallas Cowboys amid contractual controversy, got carted off the field with the injury during Sunday's loss to the Las Vegas Raiders.

Gregory had been playing well, in four games recording nine tackles, two sacks and two forced fumbles.

OCT 3 INJURY UPDATE The Cowboys Monday afternoon Injury Update

Micah Parsons - No back issue

Zack Martin - no ankle issue

Noah Brown - neck

Quinton Bohanna - shoulder 

Coach Mike McCarthy said that Brown and Bohanna should practice this week in prep for the Rams in Week 5.

Parsons and Martin got dinged up in Sunday’s win over Washington, but both did finish.

“It’s just football,” Micah said.

OCT 2 MARTIN EXITS Zack Martin - the future Hall of Famer - has hobbled to the sideline and is getting his right ankle re-taped in the late-going of the third quarter of the Dallas Cowboys' Week 4 home game against Washington. Martin appeared to have collided with teammate Tyler Smith at the end of a play.

Matt Farniok is now filling in for him at right guard.

OCT 2 LEWIS OUT A Cowboys injury sustained in pregame warmups means Dallas has a rookie starter today in DB DaRon Bland.

Jourdan Lewis is the usual starter as the nickel corner, but his groin problem in pregame pushes Bland, a fifth-round rookie who experienced a good training camp, into the Sunday spotlight against Washington.

OCT 2 INACTIVES The Cowboys have named their captains for today vs. the Commanders and have released their inactives.

The captains: RB Ezekiel Elliott (offense), S Donovan Wilson (defense) and CB Kelvin Joseph (special teams).

The inactives: QB Dak Prescott (thumb), S Jayron Kearse (knee) WR Jalen Tolbert, LB Devin Harper, T Matt Waletzko and CB Nahshon Wright. ... which of course means Michael Gallup, Dalton Schultz and, in a bit of a surprise, Connor McGovern, are officially active today.

OCT 1 QB UP The Cowboys are elevating QB Will Grier from the practice squad, a move that is significant in a couple of ways.

One, the Cowboys need a No. 2 for Sunday’s Fame against Washington, with Cooper Rush still starting and Prescott (thumb) still rehabbing.

Two ….This is the team’s third and final standard elevation that can be used on Grier this season. So from now on, he’ll need to be signed to 53-man roster to be active for the Cowboys … possibly a moot point if Dak can return next week.

SEPT 29 DAK IN RED No, Dak Prescott isn't really practicing on Thursday here inside The Star, and no, he's almost certainly not really playing on Sunday against Washington.

But as you can see here, he is dressed out ...

And he is "gripping'' the football in his surgically repaired right hand.

We still think Week 6 at Philly is the realistic target date for his return. But stay tuned ...

SEPT 28 INJURY UPDATE QB Dak Prescott (thumb) is listed as a non-participant today. 

Listed as limited are DeMarcus Lawrence (foot), Dalton Schultz (knee), Connor McGovern (ankle) and Jayron Kearse. Listed as full are Michael Gallup, Luke Gifford and Simi Fehoko.

SEPT 26 THREE MOVES The Dallas Cowboys moved Jason Peters from the practice squad to the active roster today, and additionally the club also elevated QB Will Grier and tight end Sean McKeon from the practice squad to the active roster for tonight’s matchup against the Giants.

SEPT 26 INACTIVES The 1-1 Cowboys are rolling along with their backup quarterback, Cooper Rush, while starter Dak Prescott continues to rehab his broken thumb suffered in Week 1.

The stitches in Dak's surgically repaired thumb and hand were scheduled to be removed on Monday, meaning the timeline for Prescott's return is sooner than later. ... and indeed, we're told that procedure has occurred.

Meanwhile, coach Mike McCarthy has named his trio of captains for tonight: Offense CeeDee Lamb, Defense Micah Parsons, Special Teams Rico Dowdle.

And the inactives: Prescott (thumb), Michael Gallup (knee), Dalton Schultz (knee), Connor McGovern (ankle), Jayron Kearse (knee), Nahshon Wright and Luke Gifford (hamstring) - which opens up Jabril Cox to play his first game since his knee injury last October.

SEPT 26 NFL BEST? “I think Philadelphia is the best team in football right now.” – Jason Garrett, the former Dallas Cowboys coach, speaking as an NBC "Sunday Night'' analyst.

And he's right.

As the Cowboys ready for a Monday nighter at the Giants, Dallas is hoping to move to 2-1 while maybe needing a "Flu Game'' Micah Parsons to keep the score low with Cooper Rush in for Dak Prescott. Oh, and maybe that will all change in Week 6, if the injured Prescott returns to the lineup just in time to play ... A Sunday nighter at the Eagles.

But for now? Philly is 3-0, the roster is loaded, Jalen Hurts is playing like a QB who can run instead of like a running back who can't throw ... and the Eagles have outscored opponents 86-50, with just seven points given up to Minnesota last week and with this week's 24-8 drubbing of Washington.

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